Sunday, June 25, 2017

A Weekend in Maine... Epsteins in New England

We made our way across New Hampshire to Maine where we spent the weekend.
On Thursday, we went paddleboarding on the New Meadows River courtesy of Sea Spray Kayaking.

It took us a bit of time to get used to it, but we had a wonderful time once we did. The water was exceedingly refreshing and paddleboarding is actually a great workout.

It wasn't so far from Freeport, ME which is the home of L.L. Bean and hence a massive outlet center. We figured "may as well," so we hit the mean streets and found a few bargains. We also posed with some hunting rifles because, well, why not?
Aftewards, we made our way to the Old Port part of Portland, which is a rejuvenated area like the Inner Harbor in Baltimore or numerous other urban renewal efforts.  It has a ton of bars and restaurants, but not so much for the kids, sadly. We did hear about a small gauge railroad and made our way over there, but we missed the train by 2 minutes. Oh well, at least we found some tasty vegan ice cream.
The Old Port has a great feel to it, but it was hot and my team wasn't so up for it.
For Shabbat, we went to Old Orchard Beach which has one of the oldest orthodox synagogues in Maine.  It was sparse in terms of attendance, but it was quite meaningful to pray in a building that was over 100 years old and represented a very different period when "OOB," as it's known was a popular destination for Jews from New York, Boston, and Montreal. 
Today, it is kept alive by the Weinstein brothers and they rely on summer visitors and donations to keep services going (though apparently the High Holidays attract 100+ people).
Still, it was a beautiful sanctuary and a nice experience.
The afternoon was about a perfect a beach day as you could ask for. So relaxing and refreshing and, at night, we hit the boardwalk and enjoyed some of the carnival rides.

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