Bubbles break the surface of the water as the beast makes its way upward for a breath of fresh air. Suddenly, her back can be seen atop the waves as her spout releases a geyser-like explosion of air and water. From the decks of Odyssey Whale Watch’s vessels, passengers take in sights such as these and further their understanding of the creatures with the help of an on-board naturalist, who identifies humpback, finback, and minke whale species. His job is made all the easier by the cruise ship’s captain, an experienced mariner who has committed to memory the most densely populated feeding areas for Maine’s massive mammalian residents, which often hang out about 20 miles off shore. In addition to whale-watching tours, Odyssey Whale Watch takes passengers out on deep-sea fishing trips to reel in cod, haddock, and mackerel.
It's a tradition dating back to the 1930s, and for many moviegoers, it still eclipses the modern multiplex experience. But it's also threatened by extinction. With only an estimated 357 drive-ins still functioning throughout the US, Saco is one of the last places where an audience of automobiles can bask in movie magic under the twinkling starlight. With speakers propped by the car windows and affordable concessions at hand, viewers laugh, cry, and cheer at double features of first-run films while knowing exactly who's kicking the seat behind them. Those who want to keep this American tradition going can donate to Project Drive-In, which aids outdoor theaters as they strive to make the pricey conversions to digital projection.
In the 1800s, windjammers and their mighty sails were a frequent sight up and down Maine's coast, where they would pull fish from the water and fill New England's insatiable need for goldfish crackers. By the 21st century, most had abandoned windjammers for engine-powered vessels—but not Hasket Derby Hildreth. A boat builder and mechanical engineer, Hildreth had a vision to re-create the windjammer's classic design on modern shores. Working with a friend who was a boat restorer, Hildreth and his team fashioned their own steel tools and built one of Portland's only engineless windjammers, which they affectionately christened Frances. Maine Sailing Adventures launched Frances in the fall of 2003. Though Hildreth has since passed away, his memory lives on through the legacy Frances continues to perpetuate with each voyage. Today, she can be found at Maine State Pier, where passengers board her shallow deck and sail out to enjoy Maine's scenic coasts without the noise or emissions typical of engine-powered boats. These trips stretch beyond standard tours, though. As they sail, the crew spins tails of Portland's maritime history, teaches passengers how to hoist the topsail, and transforms the boat into a floating classroom, where students can learn about lobster migration and how many wishes they can get from a starfish.
Maine Tactical features an indoor range, so students can practice what they learn in NRA firearms classes directly onsite.
At Maine Tactical, instructors lead training classes. When not helping guests improve their marksmanship, the team mans a pro shop that, as a Glock Blue Label dealer, extends exclusive benefits to law enforcement, military personnel, and state-licensed security officers. Maine Tactical's staff also includes armorers for manufacturers such as Sig Sauer and Smith & Wesson, which means the staff can complete custom builds, including hunting scopes.
Throughout the skating season from July to April, more than 60,000 people visit Portland Ice Arena for open-skate sessions, to play hockey, or watch an event. Public sessions during those months send skaters of all ages gliding across the rink. The arena also plays host to a number of other icy scenes, including learn-to-skate classes and practices for the AHL's Portland Pirates. Away from the 750-seat arena, the facility provides sharpening services, rentals, and a concession area.
Greenlight Studio helps busy parents relax and make new friends over cups of espresso and plates of local food, while kids gallivant around the open play space. A menu of toasty panini sandwiches, gluten-free muffins, and granola bars keeps kids' and parents' stomachs from growling, and a climbing wall, dome, and art area foster a sense of creativity and community. Open throughout the year, Greenlight Studio maintains a full schedule of schedule of fun events like pajama-party movie nights for children and parents.