Bike riders of all ages and experience levels are invited to take part in the Explore Merrymeeting Bay Bike Tour on July 22, sponsored by Merrymeeting Trailblazers and Maine Farmland Trust. 

Three free guided bike rides will visit open farms and art studios. Merrymeeting Wheelers, Maine Farmland Trust and Kennebec Estuary Land Trust will be supporting the rides. All rides leave from Bowdoinham’s Mailly Waterfront Park.

There will be a 24-mile ride through Bowdoinham and Richmond beginning at 9:30 a.m. with stops to explore farms and studios along the way. This is a good ride for beginner or intermediate riders. 

At 10 a.m., there will be a 38-mile ride through Bowdoinham, Richmond, and Topsham with short stops at farms and studios on the route. This ride is best for intermediate or advanced riders.

The third ride starts at 11 a.m. and is a 14-mile ride with stops to explore some of Bowdoinham’s Forever Farms led by Maine Farmland Trust staff. This is good for beginner & intermediate riders and those who are interested in learning more about farmland protection in one of the richest farming areas in Maine.

All riders and farm visitors are invited to attend the Open Farm Day barbecue from 3-6 p.m. at Bowdoinham’s Mailly Waterfront Park and features foods from local farms. The barbecue is $12 for adults, $8 for kids and $4 for dessert. 

Preregistration for the rides is not required, but it is appreciated. To register, visit merrymeetingtrail.org/events or contact Ruth Indrick at the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust at [email protected] or 442-8400.

Bowdoinham will have 10 open farms and 14 artists for Open Farm Day this year. Visitors can talk to the farmers and try samples of their products. Bowdoinham has farms for vegetables, fruits, herbs, flowers, cows, sheep, goats, alpacas and chickens. 

Local artists will have work including, paintings, prints, fabric, furniture and photography. 

For bicyclists who aren’t interested in an organized ride but still want to experience Open Farm Day by bike, there will be maps of suggested ride routes available in Mailly Waterfront Park.

The Explore Merrymeeting Bay Bike Tour provides people with the opportunity to explore and enjoy the Merrymeeting Bay region, and it helps to raise awareness about local farms, Merrymeeting Trail and farmland conservation. 

Merrymeeting Trail is a proposed 25-mile multi-use trail for bikers and walkers of all ages that will travel through the towns of Gardiner, Richmond, Bowdoinham and Topsham, connecting the Kennebec River Rail Trail with the Brunswick Bike Path. 

To learn more about Merrymeeting Trail, visit merrymeetingtrail.org.