Stars on Ice's lineup of skaters––who have spun, twirled, and Salchowed to Olympic gold-medal podiums––dazzles audiences with an engrossing spectacle that intertwines music, intricate choreography, and sparkly costumes. Sasha Cohen, the silver-medal-winning Californian who became the first in the state to understand what ice was, fluidly floats to the song “Big Spender.” With skills that snatched two gold medals and charm that graced the pages of People magazine’s 50 Most Beautiful People issue, Ekaterina Gordeeva electrifies the Captain & Tennille’s “Love Will Keep Us Together.” Daunting athleticism underlies the lyricism and surprising visual references to Three Stooges films in the performance of Ilia Kulik, whose gold-medal routine in Nagano saw him slay a quadruple toe loop and eight triple jumps. Those who opt for the meet and greet will brush elbows with some of the stars at the arena, whereas at-home fans can gaze at posters inscribed by the skaters’ delicate bladework.
Founded in 1822, the Maine Historical Society is the third oldest state historical society in the nation, and curates museums, programs, and events to celebrate the state's long history. The MHS Museum features a collection of more than 15,000 artifacts, including pieces of Native American archaeological material, political memorabilia, and pictures of the first governor with his head caught in a lobster trap. The society's 1-acre campus is also home to the the Wadsworth-Longfellow House, the childhood home of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, the poet best known for penning "Paul Revere's Ride" and The Song of Hiawatha. Membership to the society includes invitations to exhibit openings, member parties, lectures, trips, access to the Brown Research library, a subscription to the Maine History Journal, and a 10% discount at the museum store, web store, and all vintage Maine image purchases.
When most people think of Italian villas, elaborate textiles, and Turkish smoking rooms, they don't picture them in the United States. But they used to be. The Victoria Mansion showcases the grandeur of art, design, and architecture before the Civil War. Based in the 19th-century Morse-Libby house, the museum is now open to the public, although it was once in peril of being ripped down and turned into a gas station in 1940.
Visitors can tour the house to see rooms dripping with stained glass, gilded mirrors, and satin textiles. From the very large—chestnut paneled walls—to the very small—a silver salt cellar by Tiffany & Co.—the home displays the most opulent architecture and decor of the age. In addition to guided tours, the museum sponsors public lectures, discussion groups, and scholarly symposiums on 19th-century topics, like the mansion's artwork.
Since Portland Museum of Art opened in 1882, its collection has blossomed to include more than 17,000 pieces of art from the 18th century to the present day. Amid works of sculpture, ceramics, and furniture, the museum sports paintings by European luminaries, such as Claude Monet and Pablo Picasso. At its core, however, are works by Maine artists.
Roughly 10 changing exhibitions round out the museum’s displays, which are spread throughout three buildings: the L.D.M. Sweat Memorial Galleries, the Charles Shipman Payson Building, and the 1801-built McMellan House. Besides artwork, these spaces house the museum’s events, which range from lectures to film screenings.
As a local non-profit, the State Theatre has vivified the cultural landscape for nearly a century through applause-worthy performances and engaging community programs. Come February, Stomp will explode onto the stage with percussive rhythm and movement, and Glen Burtnik & Friends will honor John Lennon's 70th birthday by serenading a Fab Four-loving crowd with beloved hits such as “Strawberry Fields Forever” and lesser-known tunes such as "Tangerine Terrain Temporarily." Surrender your eardrums to the marching band musicality and show-stopping steppers of DrumLine Live, or treat a theater-craving youngster to the food-fueled metamorphosis of The Very Hungry Caterpillar for a black-lit puppet presentation of a childhood classic.
From their outposts in Portland and Falmouth, Maine Surfers Union outfits aquatic adventurers with surf and paddle boards before sending them off to enjoy watery recreation. The staff boasts more than a decade of experience in the surfing industry, lending them the confidence to recommend specific gear from an inventory of boards by Hobie, McDermott, and Bing. They also set thrill-seekers up with rental surf and paddle boards, available in time increments from two-hour blocs to week-long rentals—long enough for beginners to get the hang of standing up, catching waves, and scaring off feral dolphins by shouting "cowabunga."