The Maven is back: News from Northport, Sunday River, Sugarloaf, and Maine’s wilderness

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Apologies for being MIA for so long. Between the book deadline of Oct. 30 (new edition of Moon Coastal Maine) and a trip to South Africa for a magazine assignment, I either had no time or no Internet. Let me begin the catch up with some news and a few events worth considering:

• This weekend (Nov. 16-18, 2012): Artfull Gifts Show

Get your holiday shopping done early at the Artfull Gifts Show at Point Lookout Resort, Northport: 50 artists and artisans from Maine and New Hampshire; Maine foods, and on Sunday, local authors and an Artfull Gifts Storytime 2-3 p.m. for kids. Show runs 10 a.m.-4 p.m. daily; admission is $3. Point Lookout is located just north of Camden/Lincolnville. It’s worth the drive on this gorgeous weekend for the sweeping views over Penobscot Bay.

• New online lift ticket program at Sunday River

Purchase lift tickets online at least 24 hours in advance, and save up to 35% off the window price at Sunday River this season. Pricing is tiered with a limited number of advance tix available each day. Adult one-day tix can be purchased for $55, that’s $30 less than the $85 you’ll pay if you walk up to the ticket window. For the best savings, purchase tickets well in advance.

• Thanksgiving at Bullwinkle’s

Skiers and riders, no need to rush home for the turkey. Sugarloaf is opening its on-mountain restaurant, Bullwinkle’s, for a buffet-style Thanksgiving dinner, served 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Snowcat transportation is available for any nonskiing family members (departing from The Beach every 30 minutes). Ski in/out until 4 p.m. or take the snowcat for later dining. Reservations are recommended (required for snowcat rides). Fee is $57 adults, $35 for kids 17 and under, or $250 for a family of six. Details and menu download available here.

• Early-Bird Savings for AMC’s Maine Lodges

Make reservations for a three-night stay, Sunday, through Friday, through Jan. 31 by Dec. 15, and save 30% at the AMC’s full-service Maine Wilderness Lodges.

AMC’s Maine Wilderness Lodges, Gorman Chairback and Little Lyford, offer Nordic skiers more than 130 km (80 miles) of ski trails to explore on over 66,000 acres of AMC-owned conservation and recreation land—making it New England’s largest backcountry network of lodge-served, groomed cross-country ski trails. Ski lodge-to-lodge in a wilderness setting between Gorman Chairback, Little Lyford, and partner West Branch Pond Camps, or spend several days at one destination to ski and snowshoe the surrounding trails. Private cabin accommodations have a woodstove and gas lights with a private or shared bath, and a hot sauna awaits guests at day’s end along with a hearty, home-cooked meal. Gear shuttling is also provided for lodge-to-lodge itineraries, offering guests the convenience of skiing light with a small pack.