Cheap Dates: Editorial Cartoons, an indoor picnic and a cold one at Marshall Wharf Brewing Co.

Mon, 03/08/2021 - 12:00pm

    Here we go: March, 2021. Officially one year into a pandemic and the month that Maine went into shut-down mode last year. Right about now, a good number of people are getting antsy to get out and do something—anything! A road trip. A socially distanced social.

    Luckily, right here in Staycationland, we have the perfect Cheap Date for you and a beau or a buddy.

    Editorial Cartoons of Douglas Coffin

    The Belfast Free Library is hosting the editorial cartoons of Douglas Coffin until March 31. Coffin’s single-panel, black-and-white cartoons were run in the Waldo Independent, a Belfast-based weekly newspaper for 22 years in which he chronicled the evolution that Belfast went through the ‘80s, and ‘90s. From the reconstruction of the Belfast Waterfront to backroom politics to small-town observations, Coffin’s style reminds me of Berkeley Breathed (Bloom County) and is highly entertaining.  Of 1100+ cartoons Coffin created, 230 have been selected to exhibit in the Barbara Kramer gallery on the first floor.

    To learn more about this exhibit visit Barbara Kramer Gallery.

    Marshall Wharf Brewing Co.’s New Enclosed Atrium

    Back in February 2020, I wrote a story on Marshall Wharf Brewing Co. new owners and their plans to re-open the iconic waterfront brewery. When I met Daniel Waldron and Kathleen Dunckel, the new co-owners of Three Tides and Marshall Wharf Brewery, they were excited to eventually re-open with construction going on all around them. They couldn’t have anticipated that their efforts would be stalled when the emerging pandemic required all bars and restaurants to shut down a month later.

    A year later, they’ve got the brewing operations up and running with 15 beers on draft and two in cans. For your companions who don’t like beer, Marshall Wharf also offers an impressive wine list, as well as hard ciders. And although the Tasting Room cannot be opened yet, the outdoor atrium has now been enclosed and is quite snug inside with socially distanced spool tables, heaters, and the old wood stove that roars in the background. 

    With Cheap Dates, we always strive to put an emphasis on affordability. Because there is a limited kitchen at the moment, they offer burritos on Thursday, with The Moody Dog food truck sitting outside on Friday and Sunday as well as homemade soups on Sunday. Customers are invited to bring in their own food while sipping on one of the brewery’s extensive beers.  I recommend you craft a “picnic on a plate” by bringing in your own version of a Ploughman’s Lunch. Additionally, The Stone Brick Oven Kitchen in Northport and Satori in Belfast offer delivery to the atrium.

    Oh and the best part? You can bring your dog to the atrium. Well-behaved dogs on leashes are allowed to hang out at tables while their owners enjoy a couple of hours outside the house. Maybe, if you’re like some of my friends, your dog is your Cheap Date.

    They are still undergoing renovations and plan to open this spring. Stay tuned to their public Facebook Page.

    Kay Stephens can be reached at