Greater Bangor Maine Attractions
Bangor Waterfront – The City of Bangor has been developing its waterfront and activities are always happening there. Of course, there are docks if you want to sail the Penobscot River.
Turtle Head Marina – This regional favorite can meet all your marina needs.
* Beal College – For over 111 years, the enigmatic Beal College is located at 99 Farm Road in Bangor. Visit www.BealCollege.edu.
* Husson University – Renowned elite business school, and home of New England School of Broadcasting, Husson College is located between Broadway and Kenduskeag Avenue. Visit their site at www.Husson.edu.
* University of Maine – The University of Maine System spans the entire state, but the largest branch is the University of Maine at Orono. You’ll find the Maine Center for the Arts, the Alfond Arena (home of the nationally known Maine Black Bears hockey team), the Page Farm Museum (in the last original agricultural building on campus), the Hudson Museum of anthropology, and much more. Visit: www.umaine.edu or Page Farm Museum: www.umaine.edu/pagefarm or Hudson Museum: www.UMaine.edu/HudsonMuseum
* Eastern Maine Community College – Offering over 30 one and two-year degree programs. Located off of I-95 Exit 187 on Hogan Road in Bangor. http://www.emcc.edu/
* Bangor Municipal Golf Course – Both 9- and 18-hole courses available, an easy-to-walk (mostly flat) area. Golf Digest has rated the 18-hole course as one of the top 50 in the U.S.
* Blackbeard’s Amusement Center – Right off the intersection of I-95 and I-395, you can play 36 holes of “the most challenging adventure golf in New England,” and this seems pretty darn accurate. If putting isn’t your thing, try the modern 10-cage batting facility or their Indy-style Go-Karts–they claim they’re the fastest on the East Coast, with a 1/4 mile, high-banked track. Visit them at www.BlackbeardsUSA.com.
* Hermon Mountain – (www.skihermonmountain.com) If there’s snow on the ground, it’s skiing time at Hermon Mountain. There’s no need to travel for hours to find a good skiing spot; Hermon Mountain is right around the corner.
* Hollywood Casino – Located on Main Street in Bangor and is located across the street from the Cross Center – has slot machines and table games.
* Cross Center, Bangor State Fair, and the Paul Bunyan Statue – With the huge statue of legendary logger Paul Bunyan towering before it with giant axe and pick, the Cross Center is the hub of conventions and activity in Eastern and Central Maine. It’s also the site of the annual springtime Anah Temple Shrine Circus. – The annual Bangor State Fair is held on the premises; if you’re here in late July and early August, it’s a treat to enjoy! You’ll find midway rides and games, 4H and farm displays, live concerts, and even harness racing track and other things.
* Penobscot Theatre – (www.penobscottheatre.org) Catch a play while you’re in town. Located on Main Street near the Joshua Chamberlain Bridge, you can visit them at PTC.
* Penobscot High Stakes Bingo – Like Bingo? So do the Penobscot Indians, and they do a great job with it. Located on the Penobscot Indian Reservation near Old Town (known as Indian Island).
* Maynard F. Jordan Planetarium – Stargazing takes on a whole new meaning when you do it at a planetarium
* Waterfront Concert Series – Various national acts come to the area for concerts throughout the year. Find out more here Also, check out the Kahbang Music and Arts Festival in August on the Bangor Waterfront.
Historical sites of Downtown Bangor
…such as the statue of Hannibal Hamlin (off Franklin and Central Streets), the spot where notorious mobster Al Brady and his gang were gunned down by Federal agents decades ago (on Central Street), and more.
* Thomas Hill Standpipe – Operated by the Bangor Water District, the 105+ year-old water tower once served all of Bangor. Today, it exists as an amazing monument. It’s halo-like ring of lights, at night, has been called “the diamonds in the crown of Bangor.” Once or twice a year, the Standpipe is opened for tours. If you’re not here for a tour day (check the Bangor Water District’s Standpipe page to see when), it’s worth a drive by (between Ohio and Union Streets, up Highland). If you can get up on top, the view is tremendous! (Interesting note: the Standpipe was featured prominently in Stephen King’s IT, as were many other Bangor landmarks [in the fictional town of Derry]; if you’ve read the book and know of the ultimate fate of the Standpipe, your visit may be all the more exciting.)
* Mount Hope Cemetery – Established in 1834 (the same year of Bangor’s incorporation), Mount Hope Cemetery is now roughly 264 acres in size. It is recognized as America’s second garden cemetery; like a park, it is visited regularly by the general public for educational and recreational purposes–as well as providing crematory, mausoleum, and related cemetery services. There’s nothing spooky here (in the daylight, anyway), and worth a walk through. (Note: it was the cemetery used in Stephen King’s Pet Sematary movie.) Visit www.MtHopeBGR.com.
* Korean War Memorial – Honoring all Maine service men and women who served in Korea, especially those who died there. The Memorial is located off Mt. Hope Avenue on the back side of Mount Hope Cemetery.
* Cole Land Transportation Museum – The Cole Museum seeks to collect, preserve, and display a cross section of Maine’s land transportation equipment before they disappear forever. They also seek to remember, record, and display U.S. military memorabilia to forever remind future generations of the high price our comrades have paid to protect our freedom. This is a must-see if you’re in the Greater Bangor Area. Visit www.ColeMuseum.com.
* Maine Discovery Museum – “Maine Discovery Museum is too much fun!” That’s the truth! Filled with seven major interactive exhibit areas on three floors, the museum is the largest children’s museum north of Boston. It’s located in the historic Freese’s building. Visit www.MaineDiscoveryMuseum.com.
* Hose #5 Museum – The City of Bangor’s firefighting museum on State Street, between downtown and Eastern Maine Medical Center. This building was, until recently, an active fire station serving Bangor, until the newest station was built on the Hogan Road.
* Leonard’s Mills Maine Forest and Logging Museum – Maine grew because of its forestry and logging, and in fact Bangor was once “the lumber capital of the world.” Not too long ago, when loggers would float thousands of logs down the Penobscot River to Bangor, it was said that one could walk across the entire river without getting wet. The Leonard’s Mills Maine Forest and Logging Museum in Orono seeks to preserve this wondrous history. Visit them at www.LeonardsMills.com.
Nature / Hiking / Biking
* Seasonal walking path on premises and 1 mile from nature trail
* Downtown Bangor: walking/biking trail paralleling the Kenduskeag Stream from Franklin Street to outer Valley Avenue
* Chick Hill in the Clifton/Eddington area, an excellent afternoon hike
* Stephen King’s house (near downtown) – The one and only Stephen King lives in a beautifully restored mansion on West Broadway in Bangor, between Union and Hammond Streets. If you’re a fan–and even if you’re not–this is worth a drive by just to see the wrought iron gate complete with ornate bats and spiders. Pictures from the sidewalk are fine, but please respect the Kings’ privacy and don’t trespass. Stephen and Tabitha King have been a wonderful force in our community, from major donations to build the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Eastern Maine Medical Center to helping fund a baseball diamond to restoring libraries and beyond. Visit www.StephenKing.com to learn more about him.
* Cascade Park – By far the city’s most beautiful and popular park, Cascade Park features a lighted water fountain and a water fall that’s more than 20 feet high. The park, which overlooks the Penobscot River, also has a small gazebo, picnic tables, and short walking trails. There’s a long history here, and Bangorites half-jokingly say more weddings have been performed here than anywhere else. Probably not, but a lot of them do take place here.
We’re right next door to the famous Dysart’s Restaurant! – In the July 2002 issue of Esquire magazine, Dysart’s was rated #31 on “67 Things Worth a Detour,” and this is. Also, featured on the Travel Channel’s “Food Paradise” series. The service is unmatched and the corned beef hash is absolutely legendary. Don’t let “truck stop” fool you; this is as much a family restaurant. Visit www.Dysarts.com.
Bangor International Airport – This busy international airport is a class act; and, sometime in the 1980s, was almost the landing site for the space shuttle when all other options were out. There aren’t likely to be any space shuttles landing here, but Concordes are known to make stops. Visit www.FlyBangor.com.
Downtown Bangor – such as the renowned Mexicali Blues, Peruvian Link, and more.
* The Bangor Mall – In the 1970s, outer Hogan Road by Stillwater Avenue was mostly cow pastures. K-Mart went up, and a few car dealerships, but even then the Downtown Bangor district, airport, and Broadway areas were where the businesses were. Then, in 1978, the Bangor Mall turned barely-used farmland into a commercial lightning rod. Stores, strip malls, and other businesses sprung up around it. Now, 25+ years later, the Mall boasts about 80 fine stores. Around it are 200 others! If you want to do some heavy-duty shopping in a variety of retail venues, head over here. You can get off I-95 at the Stillwater or Hogan Road exits. Visit www.BangorMall.com.
* Old Town Canoe – Old Town Canoe is legendary for the unmatched quality of their canoes, and they’re manufactured up in Old Town. Just a 15-minute drive up Route 2 (beyond Veazie and Orono, near the University of Maine), Old Town Canoe does business on Old Town’s Main Street.