Stay at the Lake, Play in the Mountains—Summer Starts this Holiday Weekend

The Mountain Coaster at Cranmore Mountain Resort, one of two new major attractions to the White Mountains Attractions Association.

The Mountain Coaster at Cranmore Mountain Resort, one of two new major attractions to the White Mountains Attractions Association.

There’s so much happening all around New Hampshire this Memorial Day Weekend it’s hard to know where to begin! But in our opinion, the best place to begin is in the middle—centrally located with easy access to all the festivities that are kicking off summer—and that place is right here in Meredith.

In addition to some great events happening in the Lakes Region, many of the major attractions in New Hampshire’s White Mountains Region are opening this holiday weekend, most of them within a 45-minute drive of Meredith. Mill Falls at the Lake is the perfect place to stay while exploring some of these fun places.

“There’s a lot of pent-up demand this year for summer to get started,” said Jayne O’Connor, President of the White Mountains Attractions Association. “After a long, cold winter, everyone is eager to get outside and enjoy what the White Mountains have to offer.”

Clark’s Trading Post in Lincoln is opening this weekend with Segway Safaris, train rides on the White Mountain Central Railroad, and the ever-popular bear shows. Starting Saturday, May 24th, the shows and rides will run each weekend through June 15th, and then daily through September 1st. Clark’s Trading Post Gift Shop is open daily for shoppers through October 13th.

Also in Lincoln, the Hobo Railroad begins their scenic train excursions along the Pemigewasset River beginning this holiday weekend. The Hobo Railroad’s round trip train rides last one hour and twenty minutes, and will operate weekends through June 15th, then daily from June 28th through October 19th. The Hobo Railroad has teamed up with Squam Lakes Natural Science Center once again this summer to entertain and enlighten guests with free presentations highlighting the wonders of New Hampshire’s wildlife and ecology.

Polar Caves Park in Rumney is already open for the season, and new for this year the park has guided tours available to explorers who want to learn all about the nine boulder caves that make up this natural attraction. Visitors are welcome to investigate on their own as well. Polar Caves Park is open every day from 10am to 4:30pm through October 19th.

More caves along with thundering waterfalls await explorers at Lost River Gorge & Boulder Caves in North Woodstock. The park is open daily through October 19th, with evening Lantern Tours available each weekend from May 24th through October 18th. A major expansion is currently under construction at Lost River Gorge, and when completed this summer, a new Forest Adventure Trail will bring guests to a suspension bridge leading to a forest tree-house and 750 feet of winding boardwalk through dense woods near a glacial boulder field at the foot of towering Dilly Cliffs.  Birdcage overlooks atop the boulders will provide breathtaking views of the gorge and Kinsman Notch.

In Franconia Notch State Park, the Flume Gorge is now open and the Cannon Mountain Aerial Tramway will begin its high-flying schedule on May 23rd.  Both of these famous sites have daily hours from 9am to 5pm.

There are many more attractions for those who wander a little farther through the White Mountains! A pass for all 18 of the attractions, valued at over $1000, is available at the White Mountains Visitor Center in North Woodstock, New Hampshire for $329. For pass details, or for updated operation dates and more information on the attractions, visit the WMAA website at www.VisitWhiteMountains.com.

Here in Meredith, the Marketplace at Mill Falls will be hosting its Annual Memorial Day Weekend Craft Fair, featuring American-made arts, crafts, specialty foods, and live music. The craft fair is open Saturday 10 – 7, Sunday 10 – 5, and Monday 10 – 4. Admission is free!

EKAL Lake Activity Center at Mill Falls is also opening for the season this weekend! EKAL is a full-service center offering rentals, gear, and instruction for kayaks, canoes, pedal boats, and stand up paddleboards (SUP). EKAL also offers boat tours and chartered cruises around the lake! This weekend, the center brings out its full fleet of boats, and is now open weekends to give visitors as well as locals the best ways to experience Lake Winnipesaukee up close. EKAL will then be open daily June 21st – September 1st.

This weekend promises to be the start of a beautiful summer. Come on up and celebrate the beauty of New Hampshire’s Lakes and White Mountains Regions!

Carrie Reed
The Mill Falls Blogging Team

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