The Great Maine Outdoor Weekend is a series of events led by outdoor oriented organizations and companies to celebrate the how, where, and what of being active outside in Maine. Our goal is to connect our friends and neighbors with the natural world, to promote fun, physical activity, & good health.


Activities will occur across the entire state of Maine, in all counties.


Many activities will be free and at an introductory level.

Our Planning Team:

Kaitlyn Bernard

Appalachian Mountain Club

Kaitlyn is the Maine Program Associate for the Appalachian Mountain Club, working out of their Portland office. She serves as the coordinator for the Great Maine Outdoor Weekend, and tracks state and federal policy issues relating to outdoor recreation and access. Kaitlyn is a recent graduate of Colby College, and grew up skiing and adventuring across Aroostook County. She loves living in “the GSOM” (the Great State of Maine) because each corner of the state offers fantastic opportunities  for outdoor adventures!

Julie Mulkern


Julie has spent her entire career working for nonprofit organizations in Maine. Before joining WinterKids in 2008, Julie was Manager of Development & Volunteer Resources at Spring Harbor Hospital. She has also developed volunteer and philanthropy programs for Community Counseling Center and the American Cancer Society. Julie holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Bates College and has certifications in philanthropy from the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy & the University of Wisconsin Madison. She is a member of the Upsilon Class of the Institute for Civic Leadership, the Maine CDC Physical Activity & Nutrition Workgroup, and serves as Treasurer on the Maine Public Health Association’s board of directors. Julie lives in Gorham with her husband, Ric. Both native to Maine, they enjoy all that the Maine outdoors has to offer through snowshoeing, hiking, and camping. They welcomed their first “winter kid”, Johnny, in October and look forward to introducing him to the great outdoors.

Scot Balentine

L.L. Bean

Scot Balentine is a Senior Product Developer for Equipment at L.L. Bean Inc., in this role he creates fun new gear that helps people  enjoy their time outdoors.  Scot is a Registered Maine Guide,  Wilderness First Responder  and a former Baxter State Park Ranger.  Scot has led paddling, backpacking and backcountry ski trips all over North America.  A Maine native he enjoys exploring remote corners of the state with his wife Kristel Hayes and son Sam Balentine.  One of his most successful efforts to get people outside was to convince 99 other Bean employees to join him in paddling a 407 foot long kayak in a celebration of the companies 100th Anniversary.  Scot also serves on the Steering Committee for the Maine Outdoor Coalition and the Winterkid’s Board of Directors.

Kristel Hayes

Mesh Marketing

Kristel is founder of Mesh Marketing, an online marketing agency in Portland, Maine. She moved to Maine in 2004, because of her love for the rugged landscapes and uniquely expansive access to outdoor resources, and now enjoys living and getting outside with her husband (Scot Balentine) and two dogs (Capo & Dora). With a Bachelor of Music from UC Irvine, she spent several years working the musical theater circuit in San Francisco. These days, she’s transferred much of what she learned there about promoting shows & events into her marketing business, but can still be caught performing occasionally around Portland, and by the campfire.

Nick Callanan

No Umbrella Media

Nick Callanan is founder and co-owner of No Umbrella Media – an HD Video Services firm in Portland. He has worked as newspaper reporter, outdoor writer, whitewater rafting guide and high school ultimate frisbee coach. He is also a bicycle commuter and co-founder and director of the Maine Outdoor Film Festival.

Donna Bissett

Maine Coast Heritage Trust

Donna started working at Maine Coast Heritage Trust (MCHT) in April 2002 as its office manager. Later, after getting a grounding in land trust work, she began taking on increasingly important roles within MCHT’s Land Trust Program. Her background in customer service was useful there, where the goal is to support the work of all ninety Maine land trusts and to promote best practices in land trust management, land transactions, fundraising, stewardship and more. She now spends nearly all her work time communicating with the trusts, sharing information, developing trainings, and facilitating peer-to-peer exchange. Donna spends a good deal of her year planning MCHT’s Maine Land Conservation Conference, the annual spring gathering of land conservation professionals, volunteers, students and individual landowners. When Donna is not at work, she enjoys dancing, knitting, gardening and exploring Maine with her partner Rob and their dog Zuki in their 1981 VW Westfalia camper.

Katy DeGrass

Social Media Marketing Pro

Katy is proud to call Maine home, especially due to the endless opportunities to explore and enjoy the outdoors. As a resident of Bar Harbor, she gets to enjoy one of Maine’s most prized possessions – Acadia National Park – which she fully takes advantage of year round. She is a former sea kayak guide and still holds her Registered Maine Guide license. During her free time, she enjoys hiking, training for marathons, kayaking, globe trotting and loves to dabble in rock climbing, biking as well as anything else that gets her outside.

Maine Outdoor Coalition

Increasing Connections to Nature and The Outdoors in Maine

The Great Maine Outdoor Weekend is a project of the Maine Outdoor Coalition, a network of partners dedicated to increasing connection to the outdoors for all people in Maine.

The Maine Outdoor Coalition envisions a future where all people in Maine share a greater awareness, appreciation, and understanding of the benefits of spending time outdoors and increase their time in the outdoors.