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Ray Routhier

Portland Press Herald staff writer Ray Routhier will try anything. Once. During 20 years at the Press Herald he’s been equally attracted to stories that are unusually quirky and seemingly mundane. He’s taken rides on garbage trucks, sought out the mother of two rock stars, dug clams, raked blueberries, and spent time with the family of bedridden man who finds strength in music. Nothing too dangerous mind you, just adventurous enough to find the stories of real Mainers doing real cool things.

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Posted: March 2, 2016

Red’s Dairy Freeze in South Portland is now open!

Written by: Ray Routhier
Red's Dairy Freeze in South Portland. Photo by Joel Page/Staff Photographer

Red’s Dairy Freeze in South Portland in 2015. Photo by Joel Page/Staff Photographer

The first and surest sign of spring in Greater Portland was spotted Wednesday  – the open sign at Red’s Dairy Freeze in South Portland.

The venerable red and white ice cream shop on Cottage Road opened for its 64th season. The news was posted on the Red’s Facebook page and within a few hours, it had 634  likes and 162 shares. People from South Portland and neighboring towns wait breathlessly each March for Red’s to open. In Maine,  where the natural signs of spring don’t show up until June, the opening of Red’s is the one many people count on.

On spring and summer evenings the place is often filled with Little League teams, families out for a stroll, or kids on bikes. The take-out stand is a nostalgic nod to the days when a shake or a sundae was a night’s entertainment. And at Red’s, it still is.

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