The city of Biddeford is a blend of urban, suburban and rural with an up and coming vibrant downtown. The mill complexes, covering 35 acres of the downtown, are amidst a 10+ year renaissance, now housing thousands of residents and hundreds of businesses.
Convenient access to the Interstate 95 means Portland is only a 20-minute ride to the north, and Kennebunkport is a 15 ride to the south using Route 1.
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Starting in the downtown area, there are numerous shops along Main St. and Alfred St. Take a walking tour inside the public spaces of the mills and you’ll stumble across nationally-renowned businesses like Angelrox (clothing manufacturer), and Rabelais Books (named by Bon Appetit magazine as one of the top culinary bookstores in the country).
Summer is a very special time in Maine, and a perfect time for outdoor concerts. The Heart of Biddeford sponsors a summer series of live music on Wednesday evenings in Shevenell Park. Plenty of seating or bring your own chair and enjoy the music and dancing in the heart of downtown!
For a full mill experience, the Biddeford Mill Museum offers guided tours, including areas still under re-development, with the most interesting and colorful guides; men who spent their careers in the very same mills. A trip to the underground lagoons is worth the price of admission alone!
Art Walk takes place the last Friday of the month from April to November. Many art galleries to explore and even area businesses invite artists to display their work in their office spaces!
Increasing competition and rising rents in Portland have contributed to a few rising star chefs calling Biddeford home and we are lucky to have them!
The Palace Diner is Maine’s oldest diner, built in Lowell Massachusetts in 1927. Owners Chad Conley and Greg Mitchell have put their spin on traditional blue plate specials and have built up a loyal following in the couple years they have been open as well as attracting national attention in the press. Only 15 seats at the counter, so get there early for the best breakfast in town! You can’t go wrong with their Deluxe Sandwich and a side of their famous red smashed and fried potatoes!
Not far from there, you’ll find Custom Deluxe on Main St., the creation of chef Tom Maltz and his fiancée Megan McVey. Tom is a Culinary Institute of America graduate and his small restaurant has made a big splash in its first year as well. Tom is a master at taking some of the best known comfort foods and elevating each component as well as blending in elements of other ethnic cuisines. While the menu changes seasonally, two constants are the Aviator Salad and the Pommes Frites with garlic aioli, my favorite light summer meal!
Que Houng for Vietnamese is fantastic; great food and definitely a family affair where you’ll often find 3 generations of women working (the youngest only when she’s not in school, though)!
Jewel of India offers traditional Indian fare and is another one of my favorites (can never get enough of the onion chutney)!
With as much water as we have surrounding us in Biddeford, there are numerous sports that take advantage of that. There is a public boat launch above the falls at Rotary Park, as well as one off of Pool St. at Marblehead. Whether you’re in a motorized boat or a kayak, you’ll have fun exploring the Saco River.
Rotary Park also has many ball fields and a public beach with a lifeguard on duty. With its relatively flat terrain and magnificent views of the coastline, even non-sporty people like myself can enjoy biking in the area. There are several parking lots available that enable access to our beaches. During peak season, you will need a parking pass which is available at City Hall.
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For 21 years, the Biddeford-Saco Rotary Club has been a helping hand for families in need during the holidays.Read More