While you’re wandering in search of food, and trying desperately to figure ouL how many different kinds of meals you can possibly consume rather than be forced to make a single choice, you may also stop and shop in the many boutiques of the Old Port.
It’s a toss up whether there are more shops or restaurants. Exchange Street, in the center, runs at a right angle to Com mercial, all the way up to Congress Street. Here you’ll find designer clothing, jewelry stores, specialty boutiques, coffee shops, art galleries and more restaurants.
Maine USA Map With Cities Photo Gallery
In the early 19th century ice cut from Maine’s frozen rivers and ponds was a com modity. traded and shipped by merchants to places as far away as the West Indies. Har vest Ice, you ask? Indeed. Once a good thick layer had formed, usually by mid to late January, crews would go and saw out large blocks. The blocks, weighing upward of 300 pounds, were then guided to shore, hauled out, and stored in the icehouse.
You can relive the history, and break your back in the process, by joining a modern day ice cutting operation though they still use traditional tools. The small village of South Bristol and its Thompson Ice House Harvesting Museum host an annual ice harvest. Attendees can join in the sawing of the ice on Thompson Pond, transporting blocks, stacking them in the icehouse, or simply watching. There’s a bit of a festival atmosphere and hot dogs, soup, chili, hot cocoa, coffee, and baked goods can be had. Plus, its a good cure for cabin fever.
If you’re not a winter outdoors person, you can go to the museum in July for their annual ice cream social. The ice cream is made from ice harvested the previous winter. At the museum you can learn all about the history of ice harvesting and the equipment that was used. Times vary depending on the weather, so check the website for dates and museum hours.