Celebrating whoopie pies in Maine
Sweet treat aficionados won’t want to miss the Maine Whoopie Pie Festival taking place in Dover-Foxcroft on June 24. The one-day event (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.) offers attendees the opportunity to sample “Maine’s Official State Treat” in dozens of flavor combinations prepared by more than 20 bakers and vendors, and then to vote for the one they like best. For those who don’t know, this delicacy is not a pie at all, but two soft cookies filled with cream. Purists might prefer the classic chocolate cookie with vanilla buttercream; more adventurous fans might try additional combinations: banana/peanut butter, chocolate/almond, cinnamon/maple-bacon or pumpkin/cream cheese, anyone?
This largest annual event in Piscataquis County offers more to do than simply ingesting sweet calories. Arrive before the festival opens to participate in or watch the 8:30 a.m. “Earn Your Whoopie Pie 3K Race/Walk” at the regional YMCA; peruse the book sale at the Thompson Free Library, or check out the Dover Cove Farmers Market. Additional activities during the fair include booths with arts and crafts, live music, rides and games for kids of all ages (including pony rides), whoopie pie eating contests, and more. Make a weekend of it by checking out lodging, dining, shopping and regional outdoor activities — fishing. hiking, boating — via links on the festival website. Festival $6; ages 12 and under free. www.mainewhoopiepiefestival.com
Planning ahead for an eclipse trip
Are you ready for the next total solar eclipse? It’s not too early to plan ahead for this event happening on Monday, April 8, 2024. Beginning in the South Pacific Ocean, the eclipse will pass over parts of Mexico, the United States, and Canada, a dramatic phenomenon that darkens the sky as if it were dawn or dusk. According to NASA, the next total solar eclipse won’t be seen from the contiguous United States until 2044.
Located within the 100-percent totality zone, the Chautauqua Harbor Hotel, a 9-acre lakeside resort in Celoron, N.Y., is offering a Solar Eclipse Package (April 7-9). The two-night minimum package includes deluxe accommodations for two guests; keepsake blankets; eclipse-viewing eyeglasses; and an eclipse-viewing party (noon-5 p.m.) with DJ, hors-d’oeuvres, and a cash bar. While at the resort, guests can also enjoy an outdoor pool, expansive patio with firepits, dining at the Lakehouse Tap & Grille; putting green; and outdoor Carousel Bar serving microbrews and brick oven pizzas. Chautauqua County also offers opportunities for fishing, hiking, biking, golfing, water sports, and wine tasting. Eclipse package rates from $699. 716-489-2800, www.thechautauquaharborhotel.com
A high-performance jacket for on the go
Hiking season is upon us. And though we’d all prefer sunny days and perfect conditions, it’s best to be prepared for the inevitable rain, drizzle, and wind. (This is New England, after all.)
With harsh weather conditions in mind, performance apparel brand ARTILECT debuts its Darkstart Fusion Jacket that may just become your favorite new rain gear. Designed to keep you dry and comfortable all day long, the high-performance jacket is made with four-way stretch nylon and Lavalan Sport European wool insulation, with chemical-free treatment for a waterproof, yet breathable jacket. Features include two YKK zippered hand pockets with 100-percent recycled lining; one zippered chest pocket; and an adjustable hem and hood.
Techies will appreciate the center-front YKK Touchlink Zipper with LifeKey that offers NFC-enabled smartphone connectivity, providing access to digital functionality, sharing experiences, and Lifekey safety features. Simply connect your phone’s NFC reader to the zipper puller to allow digital information transfer between two devices when in extremely close contact. Available for women and men in a range of sizes and three colors. $300. www.artilect.studio/us
Necee Regis can be reached at email@example.com.