New Year's Eve 2015 Panorama at Harborfields, Boothbay Harbor, Maine

The Harborfields Herald Winter 2016

January 1, 2016

Happy New Year!

Winter finally arrived here in New England just in the last few days. Just in the nick of time, some might say. People were water-skiing on the lakes in Maine and New Hampshire on Christmas Day (and Boxing Day, too), that’s how warm December had been!

In anticipation of the eventual cold weather, the cottages at Harborfields have been buttoned up tight for a while now, water pipes drained and electricity shut off; and the boats hauled out, covered, and “winterized.” Even if we wanted to go boating, the dock and the floats have been taken away to be stored as well. Our moorings get pulled out for the winter, too.

So it is a waiting game for spring when we can open the cottages back up without risk of freezing the pipes (or the guests!). In the mean time, we occupy ourselves with other things, indoor projects, schoolwork, and of course taking your reservations for a stay at Harborfields! But we have been waiting for the snow, with our skis waxed, ready to schuss down the mountain, through the gates, off the jumps, and hitting all the terrain-park “features.” Finally, it is here -- we rejoice!

2015 was a great year for Harborfields, with a record number of nights booked. And so far, 2016 is looking pretty good, too! This year we only held cottages for returning guests(*) until December 1, instead of January 1, so we were able to get folks off our waiting list and into a cottage a bit earlier. We are filling up pretty quickly, though, but if you are only just now getting around to thinking ahead to the summer, we do still have some openings (at least as of right now):

Do you see any patterns here? There are three cottages that seem always among the last to book.

BUT... BUT....

Last spring we put a lot of effort in to jacking up and leveling the Shore Cottage, putting new foundations under it, and this fall we re-finished the living room floor (it is really nice!) and replaced the old refrigerator with a “new” one. This is the only cottage still available with a real fireplace (rather than a woodstove), so just think of the ambiance you could enjoy -- we supply the firewood!

This spring, the plan is to jack and level the Terrace Cottage and put new foundations under it, as well. When these cottages were built, cedar posts were simply set in the ground to support them. Now cedar is a good rot-resistant wood, but it is only rot-resistant, not rot-proof! These posts probably had a useful structural life of about 30, maybe 40, years -- but these cottages were built more than 65 years ago! (The other cottages are setting on ledge, for the most part, so not quite as prone to this problem.) All this to say, if you have been avoiding coming to Harborfields simply because of the Terrace Cottage’s sloping floors and poorly draining sinks and stuff, then you should seriously reconsider!

Now the Hillside Cottage, what a commanding view it has from it’s perch! You do know, don’t you, that it has a QUEEN-size bed in the master bedroom, as opposed to a regular double or two twins, like what’s found in most of the cottages? OK, we know the steps to get up to this cottage are a bit funky, but it’s worth the climb, really it is! Our long-range plan is to build a proper staircase to make access a bit easier, but that likely won’t happen in time for this season. In the meantime we do anticipate completing a smaller project sometime this spring that will enhance the storage space in the kitchen, so at least that is something to look forward to.

The View of West Boothbay Harbor, Maine, from the Hillside Cottage at Harborfields On The Shore

Oh, and for anyone interested in a two-week stay during the heart of the summer, the Pine Cottage is currently available for the two weeks from July 23 to August 6! The old “Gurglers” are gone, replaced last spring by a quiet underground pumping station, making the Pine even more peaceful!

As always we are continuing to try catch up and then stay ahead of the maintenance, and make incremental improvements to the appurtenances. The big waste-water infrastructure projects are now done, so we can start thinking about more “fun” projects, like.... expanding the boat barn to accommodate Wendy’s pottery studio, or maybe, eventually, adding a second floor bedroom to Hillside Cottage so we can get the beds out of the small living room. Of course, since it is winter here in Maine, there’s not really much more that we can do but dream about such things.

This coming September, Bennett will be heading off to college (we don’t know where, yet...), but in the meantime we still have high-school ski racing and spring track to look forward to, as well as great progress in the four (4!) AP classes he is taking this year. Wendy is teaching skiing at Granite Gorge Ski Area again this winter -- now that it is finally winter -- and throwing more pottery (including more Harborfields mugs). Tim continues to make important contributions in his work at Keene State College.

So there is a lot going on in Keene as well as in Boothbay Harbor, where we hope you will come to visit this summer. The availability calendars on the Harborfields website are always up-to-date -- they are in fact what WE look at to see what is available. You can make your reservations online, or by e-mail, or telephone (207-633-5082). Remember that we are offering a 3% discount off the posted rates if you make your payments by check or cash rather than with a card.

Wishing you all the best for 2016,

Tim, Wendy, and Bennett

(*) we hold the cottages for guests who stayed for a week or more during the months of July and August. In May, June, September, and October we sometimes have the opportunity to book the entire place for a wedding, which can impinge on a traditional Saturday-to-Saturday week by a day at one end and/or the other. We appreciate your flexibility should this happen, and offer a reduced or pro-rated rate in that event.

The Harborfields Herald newsletter is published annually in the fall, with maybe a few other short updates in the winter, spring, and summer.

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Home Harborfields
PO Box 524
West Boothbay Harbor, Maine 04575
207-633-5082 1 January 2016
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