Adventure Length: Full Day
Month We Adventured: August
Ideal Time for this Adventure: Late morning to Dinner
Bring: Sunscreen, bug spray, bathing suit, towels, swimming tube/noodle
Adventure Begins: Maine State Prison Showroom
Adventure Continues: Ancho Honey, Marshall Point Lighthouse, Long Cove Quarry
Adventure Ends: El Jefe Taco Bar
Portland -> Tenants Harbor = 1.5 Hours
Freeport -> Portland = 15 Mins
Tenants Harbor is a neighborhood in St. George Maine that feels like a tiny slice of summer heaven. It has a tiny downtown with a couple restaurants and stores that feels like a secret hideaway tucked along the shore.
On our way to Tenants Harbor, we stopped at the Maine State Prison Showroom. The Maine State Prison Showroom, is in fact, a shop with hand crafted wood items all made by Maine prisoners. The people checking you out after finding some items to take home with you, are likely prison guards (or sometimes prisoners who are there working for the day, I've heard.) The Maine State Prison Showroom's mission is to not only give these prisoners a skill but it is also helping them with their reentry into society. Maine’s department of corrections places 10% of inmate wages into a savings account that they have access to when released.
Most of what you will find in the showroom are hand crafted wood items. The quality is unreal. I left with a bag full of goodies and my daughter brought home a doll's house.
Goodies in tow, we made our way to Ancho Honey for a grilled cheese. With a sign that proudly boasts "Carryout before it was cool" - Ancho Honey takes pre-made, prepared foods to the next level. COVID friendly before we needed COVID friendly. Beyond the pre-made meals on the inside that you can quickly grab and take home to feed the fam, they have a take-out window that during the day you can get any grilled cheese you could possibly imagine (take it from me: The Brie and Blue is the way to go!) and dinner specials every Thursday/Friday night from 4-7PM.
We then made the 10 minute drive down to the beautiful Marshall Point Lighthouse. I wouldn't say I am a huge lighthouse fanatic, but this one is definitely one to add to the visit list in Maine. There's plenty of space for the littles to roam, and a museum that we didn't check out (thanks, COVID!) but looked pretty adorable from the outside. We were lucky to visit on a bright, sunny day and spent over an hour just hanging out on the rocks and letting the little one find some fun shells.
After some mainstream, touristy lighthouse viewing (sometimes you just have to do it, ya know?) we made our way to a secret old granite quarry that I found through some heavy digging. A water filled quarry in St. George, known to locals as Long Cove Quarry, attracts families, teenagers enjoying a hot summer day with pals and artists who like to decorate the surrounding rocks. If you look closely at the rocks, you'll see teenagers dotting the edges swinging from rope swings and taunting each other to make the jump. People casually float in tubes and noodles (noted for next time, you really need some sort of swimming raft to truly enjoy the quarry as there's no beach, of course, to casually make your way in) and music plays from various devices throughout. I have to say, it was even cooler than I thought it was going to be. Next time: swimmies for the little one, tubes for us.
After the quarry, we decided to make our way back to Portland. Of course, just as we got on the road, we didn't want our adventure to end. So, naturally, tacos were next. Right off the highway on US1 sits El Jefe Taco Bar in Freeport. Their outside setup pretty much is what your COVID dreams are made of. There's an outside bar, plenty of spaced seating, it's kiddo and dog friendly and plenty of space to comfortably move about without having to interact with anyone. Yes, that is rosé in a plastic cup.
We finished our day eating our weight in chips and guac.