OWLS HEAD—The Owls Head General Store, shuttered for nearly three years, is back in operation under new owner, Maya Newsam, 27.
“We originally planned to be open the Fourth of July, and here we are, Columbus Day Weekend,” said Newsam with a laugh.
The Owls Head and peninsula communities are overjoyed to have their convenience store back and one of the most frequent questions Newsam has been asked is: “Is the 7-Napkin Burger on the new menu?”
The answer is yes. The famous burger made national news when The Food Network deemed it “Best Burger in Maine.”
“I didn’t think the burger was that big of a deal until I bought the store and it was every person’s question I got,” she said. “They told me ‘bring back this burger!’ and so I had to do it.”
Newsam officially opened the store on Friday, October 9, to a packed parking lot. Many locals dropped by just to check out the new menu, see the store and pay respects to Newsam.
Bringing the store back to life was a family affair. “I had so much help,” she said. “My step-dad did almost all of my contracting and renovating—he was amazing.”
The renovated store still has the same layout as before, but most of the inside tables have been removed due to capacity restrictions as a result of COVID-19.
“My mom cooks all of the fudge herself and she put the entire shop together,” said Newsam.
Noticeably different were a number of displays offering practical items one might need down in a peninsula, where tools and household supplies are hard to get. One sign above a shelf of practical items reads: “Would you happen to need?”
“The whole purpose of us being here is for the community,” she said. “We’ve got groceries, breakfast items, sandwiches, and everyday items you could possibly need.”
Newsam has had her hands full getting ready for the opening and dealing with the rush of visitors, getting up around 4 or 5 a.m. and leaving at 8 p.m. each night. She works the cash register, while a crew of cooks takes orders in the step-down kitchen behind her. “I have a couple of employees from the previous owners who came back and my staff is absolutely incredible,” she said.
The store’s hours are currently:
Kay Stephens can be reached at email@example.com