If you’re looking for something to do this month around Maine, you might want to follow your nose.

Apple cider doughnuts may once have been an afterthought, a nice treat while you’re at an orchard picking apples. But so many farms and orchards across Maine offer them that you can focus a whole fall adventure around traveling to find your favorite.

There’s still apple picking to be done at many orchards, too, and it’s prime pumpkin picking time, with Halloween just a couple weeks away. Some farms and orchards are offering corn mazes and other fall-themed activities, like trolley or wagon rides to the pumpkin patch. And several Maine towns have scarecrow displays.

Here are details on some fun things to do in the coming weeks to help round out your fall.

Ride a trolley to the pumpkin patch at Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport. Photo courtesy of the Seashore Trolley Museum


The New England Cider Donut Map is the place go to start mapping out your cider doughnut adventures. Created by Alex Schwartz, a software designer who lives in the Midcoast town of Arrowsic, it lists and locates some 230 places across New England that sell cider doughnuts, including about 25 to 30 in Maine. You can click any location on the map and get the name of the farm or orchard, plus a link to its website or social media accounts. The two-year-old map has been viewed more than 2.6 million times.


A bucket of doughnuts from Captain Jack’s Donut Shack. Photo courtesy of McDougal Orchards

Schwartz, 35, started his map in 2020, when he was looking for outdoor things to do near the start of the pandemic. His map can be found on his Instagram account, Ciderdonuteur, where he posts photos and short reviews of his latest cider doughnut adventure. He has visited about 40 to 50 of the places himself but also gets recommendations from his Instagram followers. To see his reviews and his New England Cider Donut Map, go to Ciderdonuteur on Instagram.

Rocky Ridge Orchard in Bowdoin is one of the spots Schwartz recently posted about. The orchard uses local eggs and milk to make the doughnuts everyday, available through Halloween and priced at $1.30 each or $13 a dozen. For a perfect multipurpose trip, you can also pick out your pumpkins at the orchard, which will still have apples for picking, too. For more information go to rockyridgeorchard.com.

McDougal Orchards in Springvale is another place doughnut buffs have recommended to Schwartz. Captain Jack’s Donut Shack at the orchard will be open just a couple days more, Saturday and Sunday. The treats are sold hot by the bucket, as well in bags that feature different flavors. The shack also serves hot apple cider and cider slushies. The orchard will be open until Oct. 30, with apples for picking, a pumpkin patch, raspberries, a small corn maze and wagon rides. For more information, go to mcdougalorchards.com.

Ricker Hill Orchards in Turner is also popular with followers of the New England Cider Donut Map. Ricker Hill makes its doughnuts fresh daily until about Christmas. They sell for $1.50 each or $12.99 a dozen. The orchard’s stand also sells a variety of apples, baked goods and its own jams, jellies and pickles, among many other goodies. There is also a hard cider tasting barn, a kids’ play area, goats and rabbits, and a 7-acre corn maze. Located high on its namesake hill, the orchard provides spectacular views, too. For more information, go to rickerhill.com.

Alex Schwartz, seen here at Rocky Ridge Orchard in Bowdoin with his dog, Berko, created the New England Cider Donut Map and has an Instagram account dedicated to cider doughnuts.  Photo courtesy of Alex Schwartz


The Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport is running its 24th annual Pumpkin Patch Trolley event this month. The final rides are this weekend, Friday through Sunday. Historic trolleys leave the museum’s station eight times a day for scenic rides into the woods, out to the pumpkin patch and back. At the visitors center, there will be opportunities to paint pumpkins, make crafts, take part in a scavenger hunt and explore the museum. Admission to the museum, including the pumpkin ride, is $15 for adults, $13 for ages 6-16 and $8 for ages 3-5. Kids under 3 are free. For more information, go to trolleymuseum.org.


Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment in Freeport is offering hay wagon rides to its pumpkin patch on Saturdays and Sundays in October. Riders get to enjoy views of the center’s farm pastures and of Casco Bay on the ride, before getting a chance to pick out a pumpkin. There will also be hay-bale climbing for kids, scarecrows and fall treats from the farm cafe. Preregistration is required and tickets are $6 online. For reservations and more information, go to wolfesneck.org.

This scarecrow at Hinckley Park in South Portland wants company. Photo courtesy of South Portland Parks and Recreation


South Portland is one of several cities and towns this year whose parks departments are organizing scarecrow displays. There’s a Scarecrow Patch on view now at South Portland’s Hinckley Park, which includes hiking trails and ponds as well as a community garden. As of early October, there were only a handful of resident-built scarecrows on display, but the city is still accepting scarecrows this month from folks who might want to make one. Of those on view now, one is supposed to be Mother Nature and another is a very large dog dressed in human’s clothing. Anyone who wants more information or to build their own scarecrow in the park can go to South Portland Parks and Recreation on Facebook.

Wiscasset is hosting its annual Scarecrowfest now through Saturday. Businesses and groups built their own scarecrows, which are being displayed on the town’s municipal building lawn, on Route 1. On Saturday, there will be a scarecrow-building session for anyone who wants to make their own, with a cost of $5 if you leave it and $10 if you take it home. Also on Saturday, there’s face painting, a vintage car show, live music and a chili and chowder challenge. The latter costs $20 to sample the various chili and chowders. For more information, go to wiscassetme.myrec.com.

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