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  • Catie Joyce Bulay

Our Top 11 Local Experiential Gift Ideas for Everyone

Need a last-minute gift idea that’s sure to spark joy, curiosity and wonder in any kid and kid-at-heart (and aren’t we all?) in your life? Sometimes it’s extra special to give the gift of an experience, especially one that can be shared with loved ones. Here’s our top picks for experiential gifts:


For the Arts & Culture Lovers:


1. A class at Ticonic Gallery + Studios – give the gift of creative play, from beginner clay wheel throwing to embroidery brunches and more

2. Tickets to a performance at Waterville Opera House, upcoming shows include Peking Acrobats, blues singer Skemekia Copeland, and Pete the Cat’s Big Hollywood Adventure!

3. Tickets to a movie at Maine Film Center. They’ve got a great lineup of holiday films happening throughout December, and more to come in their new downtown Waterville space

4. Tickets to The Stage at CDM, our brand-new kids’ entertainment series. We’ve already lined up monthly shows through April, with more to come. Buy tickets for a specific event or a bundle and let the recipient decide how to use them

5. Tickets to a show at Johnson Hall Theatre in Gardiner, they’ve got regular stand-up comedy, vaudeville, and more


For the Outdoors & Nature Lovers:


6. A class or rental passes for snow-shoeing or cross-country skiing at Viles Arboretum. Did you know they offer cross-country ski and snow-shoe rentals? A great way to try out the sport. An instructional period or tour for groups are also available. They’ve also got some cool classes, like Introduction to Bee-keeping or Basket-making

7. Passes for skiing at Quarry Road Trails. They offer both alpine (with a rope tow) and Nordic, day or season passes, and have Nordic skis available to rent and private lessons. Or go for dreams of summer, and get some disc golf passes

8. A gift certificate to Whole Hearted Goods Art & Nature Workshops. These workshops, held at the museum (though not affiliated with CDM), are free-flowing classes designed to teach basic art skills while incorporating natural materials, exploring aspects of natural sciences, and developing creativity and imagination. Appropriate for ages 4 & up


For Lovers of All Things Fun!


9. We love the Alfond Youth & Community Center’s Adventure Playland – a giant indoor playground, bouncy houses and rock wall – to get all the little wiggles out! Get a few passes to stuff those stockings

10. Gift Certificate to the Western Maine Play Museum, located in Wilton, the perfect place to play while you wait for our museum exhibits hall to open!

11. We’re kinda partial, but what better gift than an annual membership for a family you love. Pre-ordering gets you a VIP peek and play in our brand-new exhibits hall on opening weekend!



(And if you'd like to give us a gift, stop by our Amazon Wishlist.)


Happy holidays from the museum!

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