Greetings from the Harraseeket Inn and happy 2018!  Winter and the holiday season arrived with a long term polar blast not seen in quite a few years,  so it's a very good thing that the Maine coast and mountains have such stunning arctic beauty and so many fun things to do, especially in the bitter cold of  winter.   Dog sledding is my favorite, of course, but there's
Doesn't this look like fun?

also downhill and cross country skiing, ice fishing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, ice climbing,  winter hiking and camping, snow cave building and tobogganing.  Everyone who partakes of these hobbies and sports thrives on cold weather and snow, but it's hard to deny that nothing feels better than cuddling up by the fire with a cup of hot chocolate or a hot toddy afterward.  That's when a good book comes in handy.

Speaking of good books, the University of Southern Maine's Stonecoast MFA Winter Residency is once again taking place here at the inn and the halls are filled with aspiring writers.  The class is in the final stretch of earning their Master of Fine Arts, so excitement levels among the students are understandably high.  We always look forward to hosting this dynamic group and wish all of them the best of luck in crafting the next NYT best seller!  Speaking of best sellers, check out my author's page on and buy a few dozen.  They're on sale now, operators are standing by!
Our popular Cabin Fever Package is back!  This package runs from now until June 14th, Sunday through Thursday only. Why suffer when the cure's waiting for you right here in Freeport?

The Cabin Fever Package includes: 
*Two nights lodging
*$50. LLBean Gift Certificate
*Dinner for two one evening in our Broad  ArrowTavern
*Tavern Lunch Buffet for two one day
*Full buffet breakfast each morning
*Afternoon Tea daily

$435. per couple, standard room
$510. per couple, deluxe room
Check out our website for more great values for off season travelers.  Call us toll free at 1-800-342-6423 to book your reservation direct and receive complimentary afternoon tea and full buffet breakfast for two. Come for a visit, and we'll pamper you with great food and hospitality that will warm your spirit and banish the winter doldrums.  Don't forget to check out LL.Bean's Calendar of Events ; everything from snowshoeing, fly tying, bike maintenance, cross country skiing...and some great presentations from world adventurers! 

Voting has begun in one of the most prestigious travel awards of the year, the Travel + Leisure World's Best Awards 2018. Share your travel experiences to be entered to win a $10,000. dream trip for two.  

We'd love to have your vote this year. Cast your vote by clicking here .  Many thanks for your loyal patronage and here's hoping you win the trip of your dreams!

Upcoming events:

* Wolfe's Neck Farm Backyard Gardener Workshops  Just because it's winter doesn't mean you can't be learning new skills (like winter gardening) and getting ready for spring.

* Freeport USA  Check out the winter sales events and fun happenings in town!

*Valentine's Day February 14th.  Pick out that special one-of-a-kind treasure for your special someone at Brown Goldsmiths  and then make reservations at the Harraseeket Inn and enjoy a romantic, candlelit dinner in the Maine Harvest Restaurant. Make it an evening to remember.

*Flavors of Freeport  is coming up February 16th through 18th, offering food tastings, and ice bar, dance parties, ice sculptures and the popular Chef's Signature Series.  This is a great way to spice up your February.  Mark your calendars!
Maine's Ice Trade in the 19th Century

Ice houses along the Kennebec.

January is typically the coldest month here in Maine, and in olden times, there was money to made on that cold weather.  Through the mid to late 1800's, Maine's river ice generated more wealth than that of California's annual gold
Typical ice box, very retro.
production.  Ice boxes in cities along the eastern seaboard thirsted for the big chunks of clear crystal-blue ice from the Kennebec as more and more people began eating fresh dairy, meat and produce year round.  During the heydey of Maine's "Ice Trade", some 25,000 farmers and fishermen gathered along the Kennebec river each winter just to cut and store the two foot thick blocks of ice, which were called "Kennebec Diamonds". Ice houses lined the river, the ice blocks were insulated with sawdust from Maine's wood mills, and access to shipping lanes, both sail and rail, kept transportation costs low.  
This photo has something to do with part 2 of  the trivia question.

And now for the trivia question, and it's a tough one with two parts .  You must answer both to win the voucher. Part One:  What was the name of the American businessman and merchant  who pioneered the international ice trade in the early 19th century, and who made a fortune shipping ice from New England to ports in the Caribbean, Europe and as far away as India?   Part 2: W hat was the connection between this Boston ice king and the Wyeth family of artistic fame? (The answer to part 2 will take some digging but the story will lead you on an historical transcontinental journey during the early 1800's. I'm looking for the name of this particular Wyeth and his connection to the ice trade.)  

All correct trivia answers win a voucher worth $5. toward food or lodging on your next visit.  You may redeem up to 12 vouchers at one time, preferably in the year they were won.  Sorry, but we cannot print out your vouchers.  You must bring them with you and present them upon check-in or while dining.  Please be patient with my replies, there are a lot of responses to answer. Answer the trivia within ONE WEEK from receiving the newsletter to guarantee a reply.  To respond to this newsletter with your answer, just hit "reply".  Good luck, enjoy this January thaw and we hope to see you soon!
Best regards,
Penny Gray
The Gray family