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Appalachian Mountain Club Maine Program Associate
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No snow? No problem! Lots of outdoor events for the Great Maine Outdoor Weekend
100+ events celebrating the Maine outdoors Feb. 12-14
Maine, Statewide — – Don’t let a lack of snow stop you from getting outside this winter – Great Maine Outdoor Weekend organizers still have lots in store to help you celebrate the Maine outdoors all across the state! Thousands of Mainers are expected to join in the Maine Outdoor Coalition’s ninth Great Maine Outdoor Weekend (GMOW) series on February 12-14.
“It’s still winter, folks! And hearty Mainers know that there is still plenty to do,” says planning team member Julie Mulkern, Executive Director of WinterKids. WinterKids is co-sponsoring a Winter Fun Day with L.L.Bean at the flagship store in Freeport – just one of the many unique events happening across the state!
Events range from classic snowshoe trips (or hikes, depending on trail conditions) in some of Maine’s most scenic areas to more unique activities like nature walks, contra dances, community fun days, and more. “We’re really pleased with the event submissions this year,” says Nick Callanan of No Umbrella Media, “our event organizers are ready to go no matter what the weather conditions, and many of our events include free equipment rentals. Bring the whole family out to an event near you!”
“We’re really excited about this one,” says new planning team member Meghan Henshall of the Bicycle Coalition of Maine, “it coincides with Valentine’s Day weekend, President’s Day Weekend, the first week of school vacation, and Maine IF&W’s Free Fishing Days. There are so many reasons and ways to celebrate winter in Maine this weekend!”
New this year is a small grants program from the Great Maine Outdoor Weekend planning team aimed at supporting school partnership events. “One of our main goals is to connect kids in Maine to the outdoors,” says GMOW Coordinator Kaitlyn Bernard of the Appalachian Mountain Club, “so we set aside a small pocket of money to support organizers trying to bring local school kids to their events. We’re pleased to be supporting the Downeast Lakes Land Trust in Grand Lake Stream and the Blue Hill Heritage Trust with their events this winter.” The GMOW planning team hopes to continue this small grant support for future GMOW series events.
The momentum behind the Great Maine Outdoor Weekend is continuously building. The initiative included more than 15,000 participants in 2015 through the February & September events. February’s event series is the 9th Great Maine Outdoor Weekend.
Great Maine Outdoor Weekend Planning Partners include: Appalachian Mountain Club, L.L. Bean, Maine Coast Heritage Trust, Mesh Marketing, No Umbrella Media, and WinterKids. For more information about the Great Maine Outdoor Weekend, visit www.greatmaineoutdoorweekend.org.
The Great Maine Outdoor Weekend is a project of the Maine Outdoor Coalition, which is a network of partners dedicated to increasing connections to the outdoors for all people in Maine by identifying, promoting, and amplifying opportunities for statewide action and impact: www.maineoutdoorcoalition.org.