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Heather Steeves

Heather Steeves tries to do things that are fun -- and only things that are fun. So far that's included stilt walking, roller derby and cross-country road trips in her Saturn.

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Posted: December 26, 2014

Our top 14 stories from 2014: including things you should do, eat and see in 2015

Written by: Heather Steeves

You voted with your clicks. These are our 14 top stories from 2014 — and, lucky for you, almost all of the stories are things you can still do, eat and try. ICYMI:

The Knife Edge as seen from Chimney Pond Campground. Press Herald file photo.

The Knife Edge as seen from Chimney Pond Campground. Press Herald file photo.

1. Most beautiful places in Maine

It’s what some people call “earth porn” — or, I guess in this instance Maine porn? We rounded up 26 of Maine’s most beautiful places, from Katahdin to Monhegan. This can act as your Maine bucket list of sorts. The story has more than 40 comments from our readers with their suggestions on where to visit in-state too.

Read it.

Carey Kish photo.

Carey Kish photo.

2. 10 easy hikes

We get it. Not everyone wants to climb ladders, throw themselves over rocks or spend hours and hours traversing Maine’s (incredibly interesting) geography. Sometimes you just want to walk your dog. Or impress your date with a mountaintop view, but get down the mountain in less than 30 minutes, in time for dinner. We found 10 easy hikes anyone can do — and most of them are within an hour of Portland.

Read it.

Clockwise from top: lobster rolls and onion rings at the Lobster Shack at Two Lights in Cape Elizabeth; the Lobster Shack sign and ocean view; Harraseeket Lunch & Lobster Company in South Freeport. All photos: Press Herald file.

Clockwise from top: lobster rolls and onion rings at the Lobster Shack at Two Lights in Cape Elizabeth; the Lobster Shack sign and ocean view; Harraseeket Lunch & Lobster Company in South Freeport. All photos: Press Herald file.

3. Lobster shack season: 20 authentic places to eat Maine seafood

Remember summer? We were all really into lobster rolls and fried clams back then. Feels like ages ago. Anticipating the return of everyone’s favorite season in Maine in 2014, we put together a guide to 20 noteworthy, waterside lobster shacks from Kittery to Quoddy Head. Some of them have more varied menus than others, but all offer the authentic experience of tucking into a Maine lobster dinner at a picnic table, outdoors, under the clear blue sky of a summer day or as the sun is setting. Ugh, now I can’t wait for July all over again.

Read it.

Eggs Florentine is a popular brunch dish at The Porthole Restaurant on Portland’s waterfront. (Press Herald file photo).

Eggs Florentine is a popular brunch dish at The Porthole Restaurant on Portland’s waterfront. (Press Herald file photo).

4. Brunch: 28 ways to do it right in Portland

Brunch: It’s what we do in Portland on weekends. Whether we jump up ready to start the day with exercise, or drag our sorry selves out of bed — possibly regretting (ahem) beverage choices made the night before — chances are we’ll be sitting down to a plate of eggs or pancakes sometime before noon. Preferably accompanied by both coffee and a cocktail.

Read it.

Press Herald file photo.

Press Herald file photo.

5. Five true legends every Mainer should know

Maine is magical. You know this. In the state’s history there are sunken circus ships, whorehouse riots and stolen corpses. If you dare call yourself a Mainer, you better know these true tales. (Not to mention monkey fights in Portland)

Read it.

6. Tim McGraw doesn’t know where Portland is

Tim McGraw released a song about Portland, Maine which details how he doesn’t know where the city is and how he would like to keep it that way. The song did not get popular. We freaked out about it anyway.

Read it.

Screen Shot 2014-12-26 at 1.31.58 PM7. Things to do in Portland: A visitor’s guide

This one was for the out-of-towners. If you live on the peninsula, you’re always getting asked, “what should I do when So-And-So and I come to Portland?” — and this was a way for all the locals to get out of that question. Just Facebook message them this article. Phew. But locals also like biking, tea, islands, art, food and beer.

Read it.

Kaleigh Natale on Congress St during First Friday Art Walk. Photo by Jonathan Reece.

Kaleigh Natale on Congress St during First Friday Art Walk. Photo by Jonathan Reece.

8. Portland Ballet takes it to the streets: 20 stunning photos

The photos are gorgeous. And they’re not Photoshopped. The Discover Portland Ballet series – 20 images shot in Portland by photographer Jonathan Reece over the course of the last year – showcases some of Portland’s most iconic locations and introduces us to Portland Ballet’s talented company of dancers.

Read it.

Three Tides’ beer garden. Photo by Ted Axelrod.

Three Tides’ beer garden. Photo by Ted Axelrod.

9. Maine’s best beer bars: 10 great places to drink local

Earlier this year, Ebenezer’s got a bunch of attention — and it’s certainly deserving of the praise. But we rounded up some other great choices for people who don’t live in Western Maine or aren’t up for the trek (Lovell is about 90 minutes west of Portland), because there are beer bars closer to home and equally worthy of praise.

Read it.

Screen Shot 2014-12-26 at 1.41.43 PM10. Trampoline park comes to Portland

This was such an awesome addition to Portland. I mean, if I were to dream up a trampoline park there might be more booze, better food and I’d want to allow more than one person per trampoline, but for what it is, this is pretty fun too.

Read it.

Shutterstock photo.

Shutterstock photo.

11. Happy hour: 30 places for deals in Portland

Happy hour is that weekday miracle that makes the food and drinks I want to order the items I can afford to order. Apparently a lot of you feel the same way.

Read it.

Thank you, Two Lights Lobster Shack.

Thank you, Two Lights Lobster Shack.

12. Friends visiting southern Maine

When you live in Maine, it’s inevitable: Out-of-town friends and family are going to want to visit. Can you blame them? This list doesn’t come close to covering all the things there are to do around here – it’s just a list of the things I tend to do with guests from out of town. They’re ideas that will hopefully help you keep everybody entertained, well-fed and happily exhausted by day’s end.

Read it.

Ten lanes of ten-pin bowling and five really big projector screens, so you can bowl a game without missing the game. Shannon Bryan/mainetoday.com photo.

Ten lanes of ten-pin bowling and five really big projector screens, so you can bowl a game without missing the game. Shannon Bryan/mainetoday.com photo.

13. Easy Day opened in South Portland

South Portlanders were very excited for this bar and bowling alley. In the summer, Easy Day became a great place to hear music, sit on the porch and watch the bay in the summer. The space isn’t recognizable from its previous iterations (you may have been in Events on Broadway or Beale Street Barbecue). It’s bright, lively, and open from front to back.

Read it.

Screen Shot 2014-12-26 at 1.53.45 PM14. Bill Murray please come to Beer Week

A clever marketing ploy? Sure. But it worked. It seemed like everyone was buzzing about the possibility that Bill Murray would come to town to try the beers all the Maine breweries made for him. As far as we know, he didn’t show. Maybe in 2015.

Read it.

 

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