, 2023-01-09 03:00:33,
Next time you and your family can’t decide whether to go sledding, skating, skiing or snowshoeing on a winter’s day, don’t worry about it.
You don’t have to decide. You can just head off to a one-stop winter fun place, like Pineland Farms in New Gloucester.
Founded in the early 2000s as a nonprofit working farm and recreation area, Pineland Farms has evolved over the years into a winter activities destination, offering free ice skating and sledding, groomed cross-country ski, fat bike and snowshoe trails (for a fee) and even disc golf. There’s also gear for rent, so it’s a great place to try something for the first time.
One big addition to Pineland’s winter recreation offerings this year is that its outdoor recreation center has moved into the building formerly used by the Pineland YMCA branch. So there’s a lot more room for people to put on their rental skis and snowshoes and take a break in the new lodge area, where the Y’s pool had been.
Here is a little closer look at what Pineland offers for winter activities, followed by a few other Maine places where everyone in the family might have fun. We’ve had a pretty snow-less winter so far, so call or check websites before heading out to your favorite winter sport destinations.
DOWN THE HILL, ACROSS THE POND
The nice thing about the sledding and skating at Pineland is that they are both free. The skating rink is a flooded area measuring 50 by 100 feet, with lights at night and a fire pit. You have to bring your own skates though. The lights are on until about 9 p.m. daily. You can warm up with hot chocolate at the Pineland Farms Welcome Center and Market.
The sledding hill is near the Pineland creamery and is kept smooth by the same grooming machines used on the ski and bike trails. Plastic tub sleds are available to rent, $5 a day, or bring your own. The hill is open dawn to dusk and people are asked to park in designated parking areas. You can find the skating rink and sledding hill, and other areas at Pineland, by checking out the trail map at pinelandfarms.org.
BIKE, SKI, SHOE
Pineland Farms has 18 miles of groomed trails for Nordic skiing, snowshoeing and fat-tire biking. You can see where the trails go by checking out the trail map, mentioned above. The cost for cross-country skiing is $20 a day for adults…
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