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What to Do When it Rains in Maine
(If You're on the Midcoast)
By Sherry Ballou Hanson

Not every day Maine will bring
brilliant sunshine dancing on the
water. There will be the occasional
foggy morning with drizzle, which
means no swimming or sunbathing.
If you're on vacation on the Midcoast
of Maine, here are some alternatives
to sulking in your cottage or hotel room:

BOWDOIN COLLEGE in Brunswick is home to two outstanding museums that
do not charge an admission.  The Museum of Art in Walker Art Building is open
Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 500 p.m., and on Sunday from 2:00
p.m. to 5:00 p.m., year-round. Holdings in this fine museum include the Winslow
Homer Collection, old master prints, and works by 19th and 20th century artists
such as Rockwell Kent, Mary Cassatt and John Sloan.  For those with a thirst for
adventure, Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum houses the memorabilia of the arctic
explorations of Bowdoin alumni Robert Peary and Donald B. MacMillan. The
Peary -MacMillan Arctic Museum maintains the same hours as the Museum of
Art. Both facilities are closed on Mondays and on national holidays.

MAINE MARITIME MUSEUM on the banks of the Kennebec River in Bath
covers 10 acres and includes an authentic 19th century shipyard with 5 original
buildings and many demonstrations. The exhibition building houses the striking
collection of paintings, models and artifacts that attracts thousands of visitors
annually. Historic vessels are often docked here and the museum offers a full
schedule of cruises on the Kennebec River, usually on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
The museum is open 9:30-5:00 daily, year round. Admission is $7.50 for adults,
$4.75 for kids under 17, free under 6 years. There is a nice gift shop on the
premises. Call 207-443-1316 for more information.

FORT ANDROSS FLEA MARKET is an intriguing destination for a rainy
Saturday or Sunday morning in Brunswick. Be aware that this is a somewhat
informal event, meaning that most displays are open by 8:00 a.m., but not always.
This experience is worth the trip, however, as a recent visit, lasting far longer than
it should have, yielded a set of old Craftsman wrenches, some vintage Elvis
records, a tiffany lampshade, a car stereo, and a wall placque featuring the horses
from Marlboro Country that now hangs in this writer's office.

WISCASSET'S OLD JAIL and the Jailer's House on Federal Street are a delight
for kids.  The jail, begun in 1809 and finished in  1811, near the site of the original
settlement of Wiscasset, is suitably scary, built of forty-one-inch granite blocks,
with iron doors, leg irons, 100-year-old graffiti and other grisly accouterments of
prison life in the 1800s. New this season is the refurbished Christmas parlor at the
Jailer's House. The Jail is open July 1 through August 31, Tuesday through
Sunday from 11:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m., the last tour starting at 4:00. Admission is $2.00
for adults, $1.00 for kids under 12.

PEJEPSCOT HISTORICAL SOCIETY, headquartered at 159 Park Row in
Brunswick, maintains three museum sites which will provide history buffs and
kids alike with an authentic blast from the past. The Pejepscot Museum, open
weekdays from 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. the first Saturday of
each month, is free. Exhibits change with different themes that correspond to
events in the Brunswick area. The Joshua L. Chamberlain Museum at 226 Maine
Street is located in Chamberlain's former home. The Civil War general comes to
life in these restored rooms and original furnishings. Tours available by
appointment, 207-729-6606.  The Skolfield-Whittier House at 161 Park Row is an
1858 Italianate brick house occupied from 1862-1925 by members of the Skolfield
and Whittier families, involved in shipping, seafaring, medicine and community
affairs. Tours leave the adjacent Pejepscot Historical Society weekdays from 10:00
a.m.-3:00 p.m., Memorial Day through Labor Day. (Admission for tour).

REGAL CINEMAS BRUNSWICK TEN at Cook's Corner in Brunswick offers ten
choices of films for rainy day viewing, with all shows before 6:oo p.m. priced
$6.50, $6.00 seniors Evening admissions higher. Shows run from noon to late
evening during the week and Saturday evenings add a midnight showing. For a
complete schedule, call Regal automated answering service at 207-798-3996. The
cinema complex is located adjacent to The Atrium on Route 24.

L.L.BEAN catalogs arrive monthly, but there is no substitute for the real thing in
Freeport. Take the kids to the sporting and camping department where everyone
can peruse the equipment of their favorite sport, be it kayaking, fishing, camping
or biking. This is a great way to perk up soggy spirits after a drenching rain in the
tent. Mom and Dad can even grab a cup of coffee at the coffee cart in the foyer
behind the information center.




MORE MAINE TRAVEL INFORMATION

About the author: Sherry Ballou Hanson has published hundreds of articles in magazines,
newspapers, newsletters, and on line publications. Sherry lives in Brunswick, Maine, and
in her spare time, enjoys walking, hiking, in-line skating, biking, kayaking, skiing, archery,
writing, reading and star gazing.
Rain in Maine? Click here for more ideas
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