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Holiday Shopping in Maine

Maine’s shopping is worth a visit year-round, but during the winter holidays, communities across the state step up their game to celebrate the season.

There are holiday art and craft fairs like the Maine College of Art’s Holiday Sale where you can purchase artwork made by both students and staff, and towns that recreate traditional European Christmas markets with food and drink and outdoor shopping. As part of Kennebunkport’s two-week long Christmas Prelude, there’s a European Holiday Outdoor Market, complete with heated tents, live music and dozens of local vendors. In Livermore, an Olde Fashioned Christmas is held in a light-strewn orchard, with Maine-made gifts for sale and other activities for the family.

Bar Harbor’s Village Holidays celebration includes a one-night Midnight Madness Sale which begins at 8 p.m. with local retailers offering discounts. Beforehand, you can watch Santa Claus light the Christmas tree and enjoy free hot chocolate.

Portland – with its Old Port charm – is ideal for holiday shopping. Clothing, cookware, specialty food and drink and gifts for everyone on your list can be found as you stroll the cobblestone streets.

Freeport is known for its elegant outlet stores and, of course, L.L.Bean’s impressive flagship location but the town’s Sparkle Celebration takes it up a notch! You can enjoy free horse-drawn carriage rides to take a break between the outlets and boutiques and other winter holiday activities and events.

Kittery’s countless outlets (okay, there are more than 100) are the perfect one-stop shopping destination. Near the New Hampshire border and minutes from the interstate, holiday shopping here offers affordable convenience.

And don’t miss Maine’s downtowns this time of year as holiday shopping gears up and shops and galleries warmly welcome shoppers with the most unique gifts.

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