Sitting on 32 wooded acres along the shores of Sebago Lake and complete with a beach, walking trails and cabins, Tassel Top Park, “the best-kept secret in Maine”-according to some-has a new park manager.

Sue LaMarre, 52, was hired in May to oversee the park’s everyday operations.

“I love to work outside,” said LaMarre. “I like to see if I can take something and make it better. This is a job where people have fun…and I love to have fun at my job.”

Raymond Deputy Treasurer Nancy Yates praises LaMarre’s abilities as park manager.

“She’s doing a fabulous job and she’s got all the bases covered,” Yates said. “She’s also done a great job cleaning the park up for the summer.”

Born in Canada, LaMarre has been living in Raymond for most of her life. Her three children all work at the park-either at the snack shop or the gatehouse. She worked as the administrative director at the Frye Island Ferry for the last two years, where she managed more than two dozen people-an experience, she says, that gave her a leg up applying for the post at Tassel Top.

“It looked like it would be a good fit all the way around,” she said.

LaMarre said that one of the biggest issues for the park is “to get the word out that we exist. A lot of people who have been living in Raymond for a long time don’t even know about us… we hear that comment a lot.”

To let people know about Tassel Top, LaMarre said she is working on some flyers and with the press, but the most effective method is word of mouth.

“People have a good time here, and they’ll tell others about it,” she said.

Another project LaMarre is working on is the nature trail that winds its way around the park. “We’re going to upgrade the trail and have an educational aspect to it,” she said, similar to the Gray Animal Farm where there are animal cutouts that children can identify.

“A lot of people come for the beach. They would stay longer if there were other things for them to do,” such as a new playground and an educational tour of the nature trails, she said.

As for renovations, LaMarre said, “We’ve done some improvements to the buildings, some little projects here and there to spruce the park up to make it more people friendly and inviting.”

With a meditative and relaxing atmosphere, LaMarre said she would like the park to host seminars during the fall, when groups who want to practice yoga, for example, can rent the “compound”-an area of three cabins of various sizes that can sleep up to eight people and which has its own view of the lake and beach access. It costs $200 per day, and the group can stay overnight.

These cabins are also available to families, and cost $956 per week, and $100 less during the off-season.

As for the people she works with, LaMarre commends the Tassel Top staff. “I have awesome people working for me,” said LaMarre. “They enjoy what they do and I take great pride in that.”

For more information on Tassel Top, please contact LaMarre at 655-4675.

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