Allagash Brewing Co. celebrated 18 years of philanthropic partnership with Victoria Mansion on July 14 at the return of their summer lawn party, renamed Brownstone Bites & Brews.

“We did this event 14 years in a row, then the pandemic intervened,” said Executive Director Timothy Brosnihan. “It’s exciting to have people on the lawn again.”

The Pete Kilpatrick Bank played on the piazza as 175 guests enjoyed tours of the National Historic Landmark on Danforth Street in Portland and refreshments on the lawn. Cellardoor Winery and Green Bee soda joined Allagash as beverage sponsors, alongside food sponsors Portland Pie Company, Anania’s, The Pink Waffle and Nothing Bundt Cakes. Tickets were $48 per person/$40 for members, with proceeds supporting Victoria Mansion’s historic preservation and educational efforts.

“Our mission is to preserve this house and to use it as an educational resource to teach about art and history,” Brosnihan said. “The house was a masterpiece from the day it was built, from 1858 to 1860, and we have over 90 percent of the furnishings. Other houses like it are gone, making this one nationally important. People come from all over the country and the world to see it.”

Out-of-state guests present at the party included Christopher Lee of Arizona and his mother, Meredith Lee of California.

“We’re fans of architecture, historical buildings and cool cities,” he said, adding that they were enjoying the relatively cool temperatures in Maine and the local beer.


Each guest received a souvenir Allagash glass. Pour options included the flagship Allagash White, the IPA Hop Reach and the lager Seconds to Summer.

“We have a broad and robust philanthropy program now,” said Allagash founder Rob Tod. “But this is one of our first partnerships. In those early days, we even brewed a Victoria Ale, which came in cork-finished bottles, and a dollar from every bottle went to Victoria Mansion.”

With the summer lawn party in the books, the mansion is also bringing back its fall Victorian fair (not seen since 2017), with an intriguing new name: A Bizarre Victorian Bazaar: An Exposition of Oddities and the Obscure.

The fair will feature live music from the Shank Painters, scenes from Portland Ballet’s “Tales by Poe,” and everything from palm readings to Victorian period crafts, folklore and camera trickery.

Did you know that some elite Victorians held mummy unwrapping parties? If oddities are your idea of a good time, save the date: Oct. 7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, go to

Amy Paradysz is a freelance writer and photographer from Scarborough. She can be reached at

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