For nine years running, New England Brewfest has assembled a coterie of craft breweries to get more than 100 taps flowing with their unique creations. This year, the event includes 30 breweries, and each of them will treat every guest through the gates with complimentary samples of small-batch beverages and reasonably priced high-fives. Exhibitors range from Magic Hat and Peak Organic Brewing Company to Angry Orchard Hard Cider and Twisted Tea. You can also take in brewing demonstrations and learn about the creation of items such as beer-infused jelly.
Organizers require that guests present ID at the entrance, and recommend bringing a folding chair and comfortable dancing shoes. These items come in handy when absorbing the sweet rhythms of live music acts such as the Rustic Overtones and Air Traffic Controller.
David Calvo first picked up woodcarving as a college student at the University of Massachusetts more than 30 years ago. Since then, he’s consistently showcased his skills at international woodworking trade shows, on nationally televised PBS programs such as The Woodwright’s Shop and American Woodshop, and in woodworking-centric magazines, including Popular Woodworking and Woodshop News. David’s studio splits its time between contemporary and classical styles, and its work—ranging from ornaments and furniture to custom-carved doors—has inhabited an impressive lineup of venues, including the Boston Architectural Center and Harvard University’s renowned Sanders Theatre. Students hoping to learn the woodcarving craft can have David and his staff whittle skills and tips into their brains during a variety of classes, seminars, and multiday workshops offered at the studio.
A former art teach of 30 years, owner Patti Spinelli welcomes students of all ages into her studio to superimpose colorful imagery upon three-dimensional figurines and placards. More than 100 unique pieces beckon to painters, who are encouraged to don aprons, brushes, and paints to festoon pottery pieces with colors they draw from a vivid palette or channel through a past life as a kaleidoscope. The studio's lively instructors roam the workspace doling out encouraging words and helpful techniques. Patti also hosts intimate art classes, opens her studio to group parties, and stocks traditional canvases for those who prefer rendering still lifes or globes from a time when the Earth was flat.
Continuously operated by the Lahout family since 1920, Lahout’s Country Clothing and Ski Shop has supplied four generations of shoppers with winter-sports gear and backcountry apparel. Patagonia, North Face, and Columbia clothing highlights their collection of seasonal apparel, while their on-site ski shop rents out skis and snowboards and offers fast turn-around on tune-ups.
After six years of guiding thrill seekers through winter snowmobiling tours, SledVentures' team of White Mountain wayfarers decided to parlay their spirit for adventure into a year-round enterprise, establishing DirtVentures ATV Rentals and swapping snow-covered runs for the rugged terrain of spring, summer, and fall. A typical tour begins with a crash course in vehicle operation and safety before cruising through the trails of the New Hampshire mountains, including old carriage roads paved by some of the area's original settlers and sasquatches in search of sugar from the neighbors. Brief stops along the way allow amateur explorers to relax and take pictures of the burbling streams, mountainside panoramas, and tree-lined scenery that surrounds them at every turn. All riders must wear long-sleeve shirts, pants, and boots in order to operate DirtVentures' brand-new Brute Force 300 ATVs.
The Boathouse’s team of aquatic experts makes Casco Bay accessible to adventurers of all ages and skill levels by renting out and selling Riviera stand-up paddleboards, which boast a quick response, easy glide, and maneuverability. Their one-hour private paddleboarding lessons empower newcomers to gracefully propel themselves over calm, glassy waters using an oar or an uprooted stop sign. In addition to paddleboards, The Boathouse also sends thrill-seekers splashing through the bay with surf boards, Hobie Cat boats, and various water accessories, such as wetsuits and sailing shorts.