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November
7

New England Ski Season

As leaves and temperatures drop, are you beginning to feel that irresistible pull to the mountains? It's time for another incredible winter ski season, and our real estate agents share the projected opening dates for your favorite slopes around New England.

Click Here to Read More...

October
10

Cheese Trails

Once you get settled into your New Hampshire home, it might be nice to celebrate with a trip to explore the surrounding area. In particular, New Hampshire has some of the best wineries, dairies, and chocolatiers you can find in New England. Some of which you can find on wine, cheese and chocolate trails. Here are a few of our favorite places on each trail.

  • Seven Birches Winery - 22 S Mountain Dr, Lincoln, NH 03251
    Seven Birches Winery
    produces hand-crafted, European-style wines using locally sourced fruits. They offer several different tour options, including their "Meet the Winemakers" tour - an intimate experience that provides a close look into their winemaking process, including a Q&A. The winery can also be booked for private tours, birthday parties, and other events. Plus, they have three different tasting rooms and wine bars nearby.

  • Meadowstone Farm - 809 Brook Rd, Bethlehem, NH 03574
    Meadowstone Farm
    started out as a cow dairy but has since branched out to include fruits, vegetables, flowers, and more. However, what they're best known for is their goat cheese. They raise the goats themselves and lovingly craft the cheese, which they sell daily at the farm's produce stand. They also offer free, self-guided tours of the farm daily, except during the winter.

  • Bavarian Chocolat Haus - 2483 White Mountain Hwy, North Conway, NH 03860
    Bavarian Chocolate Haus offers a variety of chocolate products, all made by hand. Their shop looks just like a house you'd find in a quaint European village. And inside, you'll find truffles, fudge, and selections of milk, dark, and white chocolates, plus maple syrup, specialty items, and more. Open Mondays and Thursdays through Saturdays from 10 am to 5:30 pm, and Sundays from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm, they're closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

  • Gilmanton Winery & Restaurant - 528 Meadow Pond Rd, Gilmanton, NH 03237
    Gilmanton Winery & Restaurant is more than just great wine and great food. They also have beautiful grounds you can tour, with a vineyard and a variety of animals, including Nigerian dwarf goats and Muscovy ducks. Wine tastings are offered on weekends, and be sure to come for brunch on Sundays. They also host all sorts of fun events throughout the year, including a murder mystery dinner!

  • Stonewall Farm - 242 Chesterfield Rd, Keene, NH 03431
    With a herd of organic dairy cows, Stonewall Farm makes a variety of delicious cheeses, as well as ice cream and more. They also host community events, such as movie nights and farm-to-table dinners, and they can be booked for private events, such as weddings and birthday parties. Their on-site store sells organic cheese, milk, and eggs, along with farm fresh produce and free-range beef. 

  • Granite State Candy Shoppe - 13 Warren St, Concord, NH 03301
    Granite State Candy Shoppe
    sells a variety of gourmet chocolate products, from chocolate bars to chocolate-covered pretzels to chocolate letters - letters of the alphabet molded out of milk chocolate. They also have non-chocolate candies available, including brittles, gummies, maple sugar candies, and roasted nuts. Plus, they have an ice cream menu as well, with flavors like chocolate toffee crunch, fudge brownie avalanche, and Indian pudding. Get it in a cup, a cone, or a float, or make your own sundae!

  • Hermit Woods Winery - 72 Main St, Meredith, NH 03253
    A small boutique establishment, Hermit Woods Winery works closely with local farmers and vineyards to get the best quality fruits, and to make the best hand-crafted wines. In addition to traditional grape wines, they also produce kiwi, peach, blackberry, and elderberry wines, among others. Come for a drink at their wine and beer garden and stay for a bite at their eater, which serves sandwiches, soups, charcuterie, and more.

  • Boggy Meadow Farm - 13 Boggy Mdw Ln, Walpole, NH 03608
    Making cheese since 1812, it's safe to say Boggy Meadow Farm has perfected its craft. Their specialties include Baby Swiss, in both smoked and unsmoked varieties, and Fiddlehead Tomme, an aged, semi-hard cheese with a natural rind. They also grow peppers and beans on the farm and even make their own cider vodka!

  • Kellerhaus - 259 Endicott St N, Laconia, NH 03246
    Family-owned and operated, Kellerhaus has been making handmade chocolates since 1906. Using premium ingredients and their own special recipes, they have chocolates of all types, each of them irresistible. They also make handmade ice cream in flavors ranging from chocolate and strawberry to maple walnut and black raspberry. Bring some friends and try the Kellerhaus Colossus - a 10-scoop sundae loaded with hot fudge, butterscotch, homemade whipped cream, and other toppings. Closed on Tuesdays, they're open 10 am to 6 pm the rest of the week.

These are just a few of the stops on New Hampshire's wine, cheese and chocolate trails. And there's so much more that the area has to offer as well! Contact us if you're ready to make New Hampshire your new home. Our real estate agents will help you find the house that's right for you in a neighborhood you'll love.

September
12

Maine Corn MazeThere's something special about autumn in Maine. Our real estate agents look forward to the crisp morning air and brilliant foliage all year long. It's also the perfect time of year to visit Maine's lovely farms and orchards, which offer some great corn mazes this time of year!

  • Pumpkin Valley Farm - 100 Union Falls Rd, Dayton, ME 04005
    There are several events to look forward to at Pumpkin Valley Farm every year—their Sunflower Festival is always a late summer highlight—but pumpkin season is when the farm really comes alive. This year, Pumpkin Valley Farm's annual Pumpkin Festival returns every Saturday and Sunday from September 24 to October 30. The five-acre corn maze, corn pit, and various other kids' activities are included in the price of admission. You can also get brick oven pizza and beer at the Rust Bucket or stop in at the Cow Lick Café for hot dogs, kettle corn, and cider. 

  • Ricker Hill Orchards - 295 Buckfield Rd, Turner, ME 04282
    Ricker Hill Orchards is known far and wide for you-pick apples. More than a dozen varieties are ready to pick throughout September and October, but that's not the only activity on this picturesque Turner farm. Craft fairs, animal shows, pony rides, and other activities take place throughout the fall, and kids can also enjoy getting lost in the twists and turns of Ricker Hill's corn maze. The maze is designed for kids to be able to solve within a half hour, which should give grown-ups just enough time to visit the Ricker Hill Orchards tasting room to sample some hard cider. 

  • Treworgy Family Orchards - 3876 Union St, Levant, ME 04456
    The corn maze at Treworgy Family Orchards is the stuff of legends. Every year, they create one of the most intricate and elaborate corn mazes in Maine, always with a different theme. But finding your way through this year's Winnie-the-Pooh-shaped maze may not be an easy task! Before heading into the corn, be sure to pick up a copy of the map, which includes riddles that can be completed as you pick your way through the labyrinth. Bring your completed puzzle to the café afterward for a free ice cream! And consider visiting during one of the Night Maze events on select weekend nights in October to try your hand at the corn maze after dark. 

  • Zach's Farm, 7 Colby Turner Ln, York, ME 03909
    Zach's Farm is a cozy family-owned farm known for its incredible farm stand. They offer a dizzying array of crops throughout the season, including some of the best sweet corn around. Come fall, their 17-acre cornfield becomes a massive corn maze that kids and grown-ups alike come from miles around to enjoy. The Zacharias family, who own and operate the farm, have been creating their corn maze for the public for more than 15 years now and have no plans of stopping!

  • Hooper's Orchard - 856 Back Brooks Rd, Monroe, ME 04951
    Pick-your-own apples and pumpkins are fall staples at Hooper's Orchard, a 300-acre farm in the rolling Mid Coast Maine foothills. More than 50 varieties of heirloom and modern apples are grown here. It's one of the best apple picking places in Maine, and their corn maze has also become a fall tradition. The maze offers kids and families a fun activity, along with free food and hayrides, during the annual Hooper's Orchard Apple Fest in late September. 

  • McDougal Orchards - 201 Hanson Ridge Rd, Springvale, ME 04083
    A seventh-generation farm in Southern Maine, McDougal Orchards is a staple of the Springvale community. In addition to growing 40 varieties of apples (and quite a few other crops), the farm also puts on some of the best fall festivities around. Stop by to pick apples, browse the farm store, take a weekend wagon ride, grab a coffee and apple cider donuts, and get lost in the corn maze! The maze and McDougal Orchards are smaller and easier than most, making them ideal for younger kids. 

  • Thunder Road Farm - 185 Newport Rd, Corinna, ME 04928
    The farm stand at Thunder Road Farm offers an amazing variety of produce throughout the year, from carrots and cucumbers to peaches and plums. In fall, they open up the farm to visitors with a wide range of attractions, including you-pick pumpkins, a 6-acre corn maze, and a 2-acre play area. It's the perfect destination for fall fun, open every Saturday and Sunday from September 17 to October 30. Thunder Road Farm chooses a unique theme for their corn maze every year, and this year's maze is dedicated to the champion 2021/2022 Nokomis Regional High Warriors varsity basketball team. 

Contact us today to learn more about life in Maine. It's a special place to call home in any season, and our real estate agents are dedicated to helping you find the perfect Maine dream home for you and your family. 

July
11

Coops in Vermont

Vermont is known for many things, New England architecture , maple syrup, and picturesque autumns.

When you live in this state, you'll also learn about the sustainable way you can get your groceries throughout the area.

Food co-ops are owned and governed by their shareholders, who usually live right in the community. As a result, these stores are a great way to combine economic value and social responsibility. You don't have to be a member to shop at these wonderful co-ops throughout Vermont, as recommended by our real estate agents.

  • Brattleboro Food Co-op - 2 Main St., Brattleboro, VT 05301
    Founded in 1975 as a small buying club, Brattleboro Food Co-op underwent an extensive redevelopment in 2012. Today, the beautiful four-story building houses a 14,580-square-foot natural foods market and deli along with a commissary kitchen, cooking classroom, and the co-op offices. The convenient location, at the foot of Main Street in downtown Brattleboro, provides easy access to customers. Programs such as Bag-A-Bean, where customers who reuse bulk containers receive a fava bean representing a donation to a non-profit, help promote community awareness. The share price of $80 can be paid over 18 months. Hours are 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. daily except Sunday when doors open at 9 a.m.

  • Caledonia Food Co-op - P.O. Box 736, St. Johnsbury, VT 05819
    Want to get in on the ground floor of a project that supports local growers and the Northeast Kingdom economy? Caledonia Food Co-op is working to provide a source of natural, artisanal, and international foods to the community. A group of local residents is spearheading this exciting start-up, which currently has more than 600 members signed up. Just $100 buys a share in the co-op and entitles everyone in your household to benefits. Visit the website for more information.

  • City Market/Onion River Co-op - 82 S. Winooski Ave., Burlington, VT 05401
    Co-ops have a number of features in common, most notably their guiding principles, but the business model of City Market/Onion River Co-op is unique. When Onion River Co-op leased land from Burlington to open their store, they agreed to sell a number of conventional foods as an affordable option for city residents. This became City Market, while Onion River Co-op continued to sell natural foods. There is a second location on Flynn Ave. in Burlington's South End. A full equity share is $200, which can be purchased with $15 annual payments. Both stores are open seven days a week from 7 a.m. - 9 p.m.

  • Hunger Mountain Co-op - 623 Stone Cutters Way, Montpelier, VT 05602
    During the 1960s, Plainfield Co-op was as much a social group as a source for groceries. Members frequently got together for pot lucks at picnics. In 1972, the co-op moved to Montpelier and became Hunger Mountain Co-op, which celebrates its golden anniversary this year with more than 10,000 shareholders. Sustainability and conservation are major priorities for the co-op, which recently installed a solar panel carport with an EV charging station in the parking lot. Membership is $180, which can be paid all at once or in annual installments of at least $15. Hunger Mountain Co-op is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.

  • Middlebury Natural Foods Co-op - 9 Washington St., Middlebury, VT 05753
    Like many others, Middlebury Natural Foods Co-op began as a pre-order buying club back in the mid-1970s. Members bought food in bulk and packed the food themselves. Steady growth over more than 45 years resulted in a number of expansions, culminating in the current storefront that features a prepared foods and deli section with indoor and outdoor seating. Memberships are available for $20 a share, with a maximum of 15 shares. Hours are 8 a.m. - 7 p.m. daily.

  • Plainfield Co-op - 153 Main St., Plainfield, VT 05667
    While it was founded in 1972, Plainfield Co-op is a throwback to the days when general stores and similar shops served as social gathering places. Above the grocery store is a community center that's available for classes, workshops, and other public and private events. Any member of the community may rent the space for $15 per hour, with a $9 hourly fee for co-op shareholders. The center also serves as a gallery, spotlighting works from local artists. Share prices are $180, payable up front, or minimum installments of $20 per year. Plainfield Co-op is open 9 a.m. - 7 p.m. daily except Sunday, which has a start time of 10 a.m.

  • Putney Food Co-op - 8 Carol Brown Way, Putney, VT 05346
    The roots of Putney Food Co-op extend all the way back to 1941 when obtaining food was a challenge due to wartime fuel shortages. A group of residents led by Carol Brown assembled to form the co-op, and the street on which the storefront is located is named after Carol in her honor. The charming store includes a deli that features a make-your-own-sandwich option with your choice of bread, protein, cheese, spreads, and veggies. A hot bar and soup is also offered every day from noon - 4 p.m. Membership fee of $75 can be split into three payments. Hours are 7 a.m. - 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. Sunday.

"Co-op" is short for "cooperative," which is a strong value in the communities around Vermont. Contact us at The Masiello Group for all your real estate needs.

May
23

New England Summer

Northern New England is charming in every season! But, there's something special about summers out on the lakes, enjoying the sea breeze and summertime activities.

Our real estate agents will be creating their own delightful summer memories with activities at these amazing locations around Northern New England. Which ones will be on your list?

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January
17

New England Winter

Every season offers a unique experience in New England. Our real estate agents love the brilliant colors of fall, the warm hazy nights of summer, and the blooming wildflowers of spring. But winter is a particularly special time. 

There's so much to see and do when the snow flies in New England! With all these fun activities awaiting in winter, there's no place we'd rather be. 

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January
3

Ski Resorts

While the summer months are glorious, Northern New England is just as scenic and exciting during winter. When our real estate agents are ready for some outdoor fun, they spend time at these incredible ski resorts in Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire.

Plan Your Northern New England Ski Trip

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November
8

New England Small Businesses

With the start of the holiday season so close at hand, you're probably already thinking about how you're going to get all your holiday shopping done. This year, our real estate agents have challenged themselves to do what they can to help the small businesses that make every community a better place to live. Want to join them in their support of local entrepreneurs? Here are seven ideas to get you started.

Tips for Supporting Local Businesses During the 2021 Holiday Season 

  • Chat with the Owners 
    When big businesses get so much of the local economy's market share, it's easy for local shop owners to begin to feel underappreciated. Take a few minutes to stop and talk with the owner of the store you are visiting. That person will undoubtedly appreciate the gesture, and you'll get a chance to learn more about their wares and what makes them special. You may not be aware of some of the small details that make their products special – for instance, maybe their café makes all of its food items with locally sourced ingredients.  

    Talking with the owner may also open doors for you if you discover they do not currently stock the product you were looking for. Many shop owners are happy to do the legwork of finding and ordering specific products for patrons if they know someone is interested in those items.  

  • Look for Local Alternatives 
    Many of the items on your friends' wishlists are probably available from local retailers. They may not carry the exact item that was requested, but if you know the recipient isn't typically concerned with brands, you might be able to find a great substitute from a quality local producer instead. Stick to the spirit of everyone's gift requests instead of trying to follow them to the letter, and you'll end up with nicer gifts while also injecting money into your local economy. 

  • Speak Up for Small Business 
    Instead of buying from a small retailer yourself, spread the word about these businesses to people who do have a holiday budget they want to spend. Recommend small local shops to your friends and family, and consider leaving the business a good review on Google, Facebook, or Yelp. Every bit of good publicity helps these small businesses grow their customer base and stay profitable.  

  • Don't Forget About Food 
    Even if you aren't buying many presents this year, chances are good that you're still planning to have something special to eat during the holiday season. If so, remember that local retailers carry food too! Whether you're cooking a full festive dinner or just want a few small treats to indulge in, there is probably a butcher, cheesemaker, vineyard, confectioner, or other local business that sells what you need. As a bonus, their wares are probably much higher quality than what you would get at your neighborhood grocery store. The premium flavors and textures will add a little extra magic to your holiday table.  

  • Shop Based on Your Values 
    Shopping local is an excellent opportunity to use your money to support the outcomes you want to see in the world. Many small businesses partner with local charities to raise money or organize important local events, so you can buy from a shop that is affiliated with a cause that is near and dear to your heart.  

  • Look for Extended Deals 
    Small businesses know they are competing with many other retailers to win your dollars. To make shopping at their locations more attractive, many extend their Black Friday deals for longer than bigger stores do. You can often get excellent prices on all kinds of items well into December, making it easier to fit the cost of shopping local into your budget.

    It is still a good idea to shop as early as possible, though – unlike their competition, small retailers may not have a regularly updated Facebook page or website that you could use to find out when these promotions end. If you don't want to miss out, don't wait.

  • Look for One-of-a-Kind Artisan Gifts 
    Local retailers rarely stick to selling the same old merchandise you could get from the big box store down the street. Instead, many of them pair up with local creatives to sell hand-crafted items you won't find anywhere else. Buying a handmade necklace, scented candle, or piece of furniture not only supports two local independent businesses at the same time – but it also gets you an incredibly unique gift that your loved ones are sure to treasure.  

Once you've experienced the magic of shopping local around the holidays, this practice is sure to become a household tradition for your family. Do your part to support your local economy today, and if you have an imminent move on the horizon, don't fret. Contact us for help finding a home and getting settled into your new community.  

October
4

Northern New England Autumn

It's hard to believe that fall is already at our doorstep. But as sad as we are to see summer go, we must admit that autumn is our real estate agents' favorite season in New England. The scenery this time of year is nothing short of spectacular. 

Peak foliage usually arrives in early to mid-October, so you still have plenty of time to plan an amazing fall foliage road trip in New England. These are some of our favorite spots for leaf peeping. 

Leaf Peeping Around Northern New England

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April
22

  • Skip the bottled water.
  • Bring your own coffee mug to work instead of using disposable cups.
  • Turn off lights when you're not in the room will help save energy costs.
  • Bring your own grocery bags to the market.
  • Try carpooling or walking to work if possible.
  • Go Paperless! Pay your bills online.
  • Donate clothes or used items you no longer need rather than throwing them away.
  • Try cutting down on shower time by a few minutes.
  • Switch to glass containers and reusable sandwich bags for lunch and leftovers.
  • Switch to LED lightbulbs

If we all pitch in, we can make this earth a better place for all! Happy Earth Day!

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