Explore Naples, ME
Driving south from the Naples causeway on Rte 114 in Naples, Maine you'll soon pass the Naples Country Club and Golf Course and , bearing left, you'll travel along the west shore of Brandy Pond. For the next mile or so, before you get to the Sebago Lake State Park entrance, you can find some of the nicest summer vacation homes around. When most people think of a summer vacation home in Maine they think of sparkling, clear water, a nice flat lot with sandy beach swimming, a dock for a boat, open views of the water from a screened-in porch, a golden, natural pine-paneled interior, and a fireplace to help take the chill off on cool summer evenings. Such a place currently exists - and it's for sale! Just a mile from Rte. 302 and the Naples Causeway you'll find this tidy, white clapboarded c...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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The Sebago Lakes Region Area and especially Naples, Maine, is getting ready for a blues infusion. The 5th Annual Maine Blues Festival will take place on the shores of Long Lake and Brandy Pond on Fathers Day weekend. Mike McClellan says, "Over 40 bands, over 20 locations, all throughout beautiful Naples, Maine." The event showcases talented Maine bands performing simultaneously on multiple stages throughout town. The fun starts on Friday, June 18th at 7 p.m with a Warm-Up Party at seven different venues from the Freedom Cafe to the Songo River Queen II to Point Sebago Resort. Saturday is Maine Blues Festival Day. Tickets  are $10 in advance and $15 on the day of the festival and can be purchased at Bray's Brewpub and Eatery, Bullmoose Music Stores and mainebluesfestival.com. Online tick...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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If you haven't kept up with the situation in our Maine Lakes News Digest, a blatant shoreland zoning violation has taken place on Long Lake in Naples. Peter Lowell, executive director of Lakes Environmental  Association, explained it to me this way in a recent e-mail: "Early this spring, over 120 feet of shoreline on John Chase's property on Long Lake was clear cut, stumped and leveled. The lot was previously undeveloped and fully forested with a mix of large evergreen and hardwood trees. After being alerted, the local Code Enforcement Officer [of Naples] and the Maine DEP staff walked the site with the landowner. A plan was then developed by the landowner to re-vegetate the property with three foot hemlocks, six foot deciduous trees and a mix of shrub species all under 18 inches in hei...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Back in 2003 I met with an elderly gentleman who purchased his lakefront camp (or what folks from Massachusetts call a "cottage"), back in 1962. He was a former IBM salesman - a pretty big deal in the 1960s. He purchased his Sebago Lake summer home for $12,000. Now 41 years later he was selling. Although lovingly maintaining the home for 40 years, he had made no major repairs, improvements or expansion to the humble structure. We listed the home for $549,900 and it sold for $529,900. I asked him what he thought of his investment. He told me that he enjoyed 40 fabulous Maine summers and, added jokingly, earned a half million for his trouble. He described to me the history of his investment. He said that although the trend was always up, the path was cyclical or one of peaks and plateaus....
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Great boating opportunities await on Brandy Pond in the Sebago Lakes Region. Located in Naples, Maine, Brandy Pond is the middle of three interlocking lakes that cover more than 35,000 acres and has long been the link between Long Lake and Sebago Lake. The pond, at 733 acres with a maximum depth of 44 feet and an average depth of 16 feet, was originally called the Bay of Naples. Search for lakefront properties on Brandy Pond in Naples Today, lakefront property owners will find three full service marinas on the Brandy Pond: Causeway Marina, Moose Landing Marina and Naples Marina. Boat rentals, slips and gas are available at these marinas. Or you might enjoy a seaplane ride from North Country Scenic Rides, located on the Causeway. If you are looking for seaplane flight instruction, turn t...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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February 25, 8 p.m. David Bromberg Quartet, an eclectic style of hillbilly jazz including bluegrass, blues, folk, country western and rock ‘n roll, $35/person concert only, dinner sold out, order tickets by calling or on-line, Stone Mountain Arts Center, 695 Dugway Road, Brownfield. FMI: 207.935.7292, www.stonemountainartscenter.com. February 25, 8 p.m. "Tuba: The Other Solo Voice," Spotlight Concert Series, USM faculty member Dan Hunter puts the spotlight on the often overlooked voice of the tuba, joined by pianist Sanae Kanda, prices vary, Corthell Concert Hall, USM, 37 College Avenue, Gorham. FMI: 207.780.5265, www.usm.maine.edu. February 26-28, 7 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday, "One-Eyes, Two-Eyes and Three-Eyes," adapted and directed by Stephanie Ross, children's thea...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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January 22, 5-7 p.m. "Collage Exhibit," Wine and Cheese Reception, Gallery 302, 112 Main Street, Bridgton. FMI: 207.647.ARTS, www.gallery302.org. January 22, 7 p.m. "Duplicity," rated PG-13, $3/adults, $2/students, children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult, Leura Hill Eastman Performing Arts Center, Fryeburg Academy, Bradley Street, Fryeburg. FMI: 207.935.9232, www.fryeburgacademy.org. January 22, 8 p.m. Recession Session featuring Vance Gilbert, acoustic guitar, whimsical sense of humor and tenor voice, $10/person for concert, dinner available at 6 p.m. by reservation, Stone Mountain Arts Center, 695 Dugway Road, Brownfield. FMI: 207.935.7292, www.stonemountainartscenter.com or www.vancegilbert.com. January 23-24, all day, Mushers Bowl Winter Carnival, dog sled races and skijor...
Trickey Pond, in the Sebago Lake Watershed, is the most transparent lake in western Maine. Trickey Pond is one of the ponds that Lakes Environmental Association's Executive Director, Peter Lowell, describes as "The cream of the crop." The average clarity, measured by a Secchi Disk, is over 33 feet deep. The Lakes Environmental Association routinely monitors Trickey Pond and rates it in the moderate degree of concern category, to ensure that the water quality is maintained. The lake is small at only 315 acres, but it provides a high quality fishery for landlocked salmon, brook trout, lake trout, splake (a hybrid cross between brook and lake trout) and smallmouth bass. According to John Boland, regional fisheries biologist, "Efforts are underway through the regulatory process to keep the ...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Located on Brandy Pond in Naples, Maine, in the heart of the Sebago Lakes Region, is Naples Golf and Country Club. The Naples Golf and Country Club was established in 1921 with the fine front nine, then the back nine were added in 2000. The rolling fairways and views of Brandy Pond make this a premiere course in western Maine. About 2,000 feet of the course fronts the edge of Brandy Pond. Robert "Bob" Caron is the PGA Professional and General Manager of the club. Gene Ferreira, who works in the Pro Shop told me his favorite hole is the 14th. "It's an interesting par 5 with a pine tree smack dab in the middle of the fairway. Challenging," said Gene. June Gyger also likes the 14th hole. "It's picturesque," she said. According to Gene, playing the front and back nine is like playing two di...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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If you're renting a lakefront camp or cabin this summer in Maine, your vacation is not complete until you've fully enjoyed the fun and beauty of our area lakes and ponds. The Causeway Marina on Brandy Pond sits beside the moveable swing bridge in Naples, right in the heart of the Sebago Lakes Region.  It has been family owned and operated for the last twenty years and been helping customers enjoy the fun and beauty of our Maine lakes all that time. Though it's small in size, Causeway Marina offers big amenities. The owners, Dan and Dawn Allen, proudly claim the longest fuel dock (130′) in the Lakes Region as well as the largest boat rental operation in Maine. Dan says, "We're very busy for the next few weeks ... for as long as the good weather holds." This full-service marina offers the...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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August 14, 10 a.m. Natural Community Hike at Pleasant Mountain, an introduction to the Ironwood-Oak-Ash woodland communtiy, sponsored by Loon Echo Land Trust, meet at the Ledges Trail trailhead, Mountain Road, Denmark. FMI: 207.647.4352 or http://loonecholandtrust.org August 14, 1:30-5:30 p.m. Harrison Farmers' Market, "Our goods travel just a short trip from our farms to your table . . . Taste the difference," parking lot between the Town Office and Caswell Public Library, Route 35, Harrison. FMI: 207.583.4668 or www.harrisonfarmersmarket.com August 14, 8 p.m. Meet the Artist: Avner the Eccentric and Julie Goell, an introduction to the world of clowning and celebration of the comic art of succeeding in the face of failure, Tickets: $8, Celebration Barn, 190 Stock Farm Road, South Paris...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Shabby chic furniture to decorate your lakefront property is available at the charming My Sister's Garage Antique Shop at 1328 Roosevelt Trail (Route 302) in Naples. Sisters Sarah and Jen Tringali first opened the shop three years ago because "we like everything retro," explains Sarah. "We named it My Sister's Garage because it's located in Jen's garage." The Tringali sisters began their business by giving up some of their own well-loved pieces. They've supplemented this with trips up and down the East Coast, including two trips a year to the Brimfield Antique Show. Sarah says, "We remake items by salvaging pieces out of the other things. We rewire and make new chandeliers and we paint just about everything that walks through the door." The motto of My Sister's Garage is "pre-loved piec...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Last week Sebago Lake, Brandy Pond and Long Lake in the western Maine Lakes Region glistened with beautiful antique watercraft, including many woodies, as the Mountainview Woodies Classic Boat Club held its 16th Annual Antique and Classic Boat Show on the Causeway in Naples on Saturday, August 1. Some of the rarest and most beautiful antique and classic boats still in existence were on display for all to enjoy. Wooden boats have graced the Lakes Region for many years. They recall a more elegant era, where form and function combined in a graceful work of art that glides across the water. With sleek, smooth lines, detailed handiwork and the extraordinary glow of mahogany, these boats offer unique beauty from bow to stern. Though wooden runabouts, the first personal powerboats, were replac...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Looking to rent a pontoon boat while you are searching for lakefront property in the Sebago Lakes Region? The folks at Moose Landing Marina enjoy serving the people and visitors of the Mountains and Lakes Region of western Maine. Conveniently located on Route 302 and Brandy Pond, by Long Lake in Naples, Moose Landing Marina is your perfect choice for a boat rental. Their pontoon boats are clean, comfortable and easy to maneuver around our lakes and ponds. They also offer a full-service marina at Point Sebago Resort on Sebago Lake. With over 1,000 feet of water frontage, 300 deep water slips are available at this family owned and operated marina. A wide range of professional services includes new and pre-owned boat sales, pontoon boat rentals, brokerage services, indoor and outdoor stora...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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For a leisurely way to view Long Lake and Brandy Pond lakefront properties, why not take a ride on the Songo River Queen II, which docks on the Causeway in Naples. Relive a bygone era and travel from Long Lake in Naples to the Songo River, home of the historic Songo Lock. The Songo River Queen is a modern day replica of the grand riverboats that traveled the Mississippi River in the 1800s. True to tradition, her only means of propulsion is the authentic stern paddlewheel. Built by Frank Gerrish in 1982, she operates on Long Lake and Brandy Pond. Daily cruises occur in July and August. Chartered trips are available from Mother's Day through Halloween.One of my favorite rides on the Songo River Queen is the relaxing two and a half hour tour down the Songo River to the Songo Lock. The rive...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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The 4th annual Maine Blues Festival returns to Naples, Maine on the shores of Long Lake and Brandy Pond this Friday night and Saturday providing young and old alike a chance to see over 40 bands and performers at a dozen different sites in this picturesque town in the heart of the Sebago Lakes Region. The Greater Bridgton Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce provides the organizational backbone to this two day event which ushers in the summer season in Maine's lakes region with world-class performers playing America's music - the blues. One ticket gets you into all the venues and there's even a place for children to hang out if they are not as enthralled with the music as their Moms and Dads. Tickets are $11 in advance and $15 at the door. This is truly a family fun event - in fact, childre...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Brandy Pond, once known as the Bay of Naples, sits at the heart of the Sebago Lakes Region between the long and narrow Long Lake to the north and the mighty Sebago Lake to the south. Connected by the Naples swingbridge and causeway to Long Lake and by the Songo River,  through the Songo locks, to Sebago Lake, Brandy Pond is the centerpiece of 35 miles of boating that is the pride of the Lakes Region. Flanked, as it is, by two relative giants, Brandy Pond is no mud puddle. It's surface area covers 733 acres, its maximum depth is 44 feet and mean depth 16 feet, and it's shorefront is comprised of 204 lakefront lots. On its surface on a summer's day find all kinds of floating craft, from canoes and kayaks, to powerboats pulling waterskiers and wakeboarders, to the grandest lady in the area...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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Sebago Lake State Park is a popular state park in Maine that is well-known for camping, boating, swimming, and recreation. Located in the town of Naples at the north end of mighty Sebago Lake, the state park was founded in 1938 as one of the five original Maine state parks. This state park offers 250 campsites, two public boat launch areas, and bathrooms. The park is mostly forested and encompasses 1,400 acres. The woods provide a respite from the sun and beach activities and are enjoyed by hikers, bikers, and nature walkers alike. The park is open from May 1 to October 15. Sebago Lake State Park is divided into two areas for camping - Naples Beach and Witch Cove. Besides the beach areas, both sites offer boat ramps and bathrooms with flush toilets and hot showers. While the park is pop...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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I was driving over the causeway in Naples earlier this week and saw the strangest sight out on Long Lake. The ice had just gone out and there on the lake, probably a mile or two from the causeway, was this big black thing floating on the water. What could it be? Stopping to have a look - I saw that it was moving! It was a beautiful early spring day - no fog or rain - visibility for scores of miles. I could see the top of snow-covered Mount Washington. The lake was blue and dappled with sunlight. I watched  that thing, moving slowly against the horizon. Then it hit me! That floating monolith was the Songo River Queen out for its maiden voyage. Every fall they basically shrink wrap "the Queen" in black plastic to protect it from the elements. For some reason, they hadn't yet removed the p...
By Jon Whitney
(Anne Plummer and Associates)
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When it opened its doors in the summer of 1900, the Bay of Naples Hotel on the east shore of Long Lake in Naples, Maine had a full compliment of guests ready to occupy its four floors and 72 rooms. A staff of 85 would have waited on the front veranda and watched as their guests disembarked from a boat provided by hotel owner Charles Goodrich. Horse-drawn buggies would have taxied the guests from lakeside, up the gravel path, to the hotel front door. Before entering, they could turn and take in a sweeping view of Long Lake, the causeway and Naples Village and, on the horizon, the Presidential Range of the White Mountains and mighty Mount Washington. Goodrich built the Bay of Naples Hotel as a destination for all the passengers he carried on the Songo River Steamboat Company, which he als...

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