Give Dad the Gift of Experience with these Fun June Events

There are lots of fun ways to celebrate Father’s Day that don’t involve a new tie. Think outside the box and give the gift of experience this year. There are lots of fun happenings all around Dirigo Pines this month — take Dad and the whole family for an outing they won’t forget.

Waterfront Concerts

Just 15 minutes from Dirigo Pines, you’ll find some of the biggest names in music (and comedy and more) performing at the Bangor Waterfront. The concert season kicks into high gear in June, featuring the Outlaw Music Festival on June 14 with Willie Nelson, Phil Lesh, Alison Krause and more. Visit for tickets and more shows!

Best of the North Fest 

Beer, food and music might be the perfect trio for Dad’s gift this year. Check out this all day celebration of Maine breweries, food trucks, and fun musical tribute acts on the Bangor Waterfront. Coming June 22. Click for details.

Whoopie Pie Festival

Speaking of great food, what’s a more “Maine” way to spend time with Dad than at the Whoopie Pie Festival in Dover-Foxcroft (less than an hour from Dirigo Pines) on June 22. Taste-test, dance, and have an all around good time with the whole family.

Portland Sea Dogs Game

Catch a ballgame with Dad at Portland’s Hadlock Field (2 hours from Dirigo Pines) and watch Maine’s own minor league baseball team. Sea Dogs games are fun for everyone with affordable tickets and concessions and plenty of action. For a full schedule, click here.

Take a Look Inside

Springtime has us thinking of new beginnings — like retirement and what that might look like. Maybe it’s a comfortable, well-appointed cottage in a community full of other retirees, days spent tending to gardens, exploring nature trails, and sharing meals with friends; no home maintenance to worry about. The Cottage Community at Dirigo Pines might be just what you’re looking for.

Our Cottage Community offers one monthly fee which includes cable television, internet, grounds keeping, snow plowing, trash removal, building repairs, maintenance and more. You can also access an array of services and facilities in the central Inn, including a beautiful gathering room with a large fireplace, dining rooms, library, hair salon, activity rooms and more. There is even a large private dining room, which you can reserve for your own gatherings with friends and family.

Every duplex style cottage home at Dirigo Pines offers a living room, dining area, fully applianced kitchen, master bedroom with walk-in closet, guest bedroom, two baths, screened-in porch, and attached garage. Some cottages also have a den. There are many interior finish options and upgrades available. Click here to learn more about our cottage community. 

June 12 & June 26 from 9:30 -11 a.m.

Open Houses: Cottages at 14 Poplar Drive, 110 Dirigo Drive and 13 Longwood Court.

We currently have 3 cottages available. Stop by our Open House on Tuesday, June 12 or 26 to take a look inside these beautiful homes. Enjoy living surrounded by natural beauty, with all the conveniences of Dirigo Pines and the Town of Orono, just steps away.

Learn more about 14 Poplar Drive

Learn more about 110 Dirigo Drive

Learn more about 13 Longwood Court

Come see for yourself what retirement at Dirigo Pines looks like. Call 1-866-344-3400 or email for more information or to schedule a tour.

About our Short-term/Respite Stays

Dirigo Dish: Spinach Salad

Brighter, lighter eating is what springtime is all about. Fresh greens, farmers market finds and a light, warm orange vinaigrette all come together in this healthy salad from the American Heart Association. Find even more heart healthy recipes at!


  • 6 oz. fresh spinach
  • 2 medium Italian plum (Roma) tomatoes (sliced crosswise)
  • 1 oz. crumbled soft goat cheese (1/4 cup)
  • 1 Tbsp. imitation bacon bits
  • 2 Tbsp. sliced almonds (dry-roasted)
  • 2 tsp. olive oil (extra virgin preferred)
  • 2 medium green onions (thinly sliced)
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. light brown sugar
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper


  1. In a large serving bowl, make one layer each, in order, of the spinach, tomatoes, goat cheese, bacon bits and almonds.
  2. In a small skillet, heat the oil over medium heat, swirling to coat the bottom. Cook the green onions for 1 to 2 minutes, or until almost soft, stirring occasionally. Stir in the remaining dressing ingredients. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the brown sugar is dissolved and the mixture is heated through, stirring occasionally. Pour over the salad.
The American Heart Association’s website is a great place for seniors and people of all ages to find delicious heart healthy recipes. Click here for more AHA recipes!

From Poppies to Parades — How Memorial Day Came to Be

Today we remember those we’ve lost and those who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. Many people recognize Memorial Day in different ways, paying thanks to our veterans, visiting with family and remembering those we’ve lost.

Here are a few things you might not have known about this special day and how it came to be:

  • Also known as Decoration Day, Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the U.S. observed every year on the last Monday of May. But did you know the holiday was held on May 30 from 1868 to 1970?
  • Some believe that the annual cemetery decoration practice began before the American Civil War. Annual Decoration Days for particular cemeteries are still held on a Sunday in late spring or early summer in some rural areas of the American South.
  • On June 3, 1861, Warrenton, Virginia was the location of the first Civil War soldier’s grave ever to be decorated, according to a Richmond Times-Dispatch newspaper article in 1906. However, Boalsburg, Pennsylvania promotes itself as the birthplace of Memorial Day, after ladies decorated soldiers’ graves on July 4, 1864.
  • In April 1865, following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination and after more than 600,000 soldiers of both sides died in the Civil War, memorialization took on new significance. Under the leadership of women during the war, an increasingly formal practice of decorating graves took shape. In 1865, the federal government began creating national military cemeteries for the Union war dead.
  • In 1868, General John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of Union veterans founded in Decatur, Illinois, established Decoration Day as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the Union war dead with flowers.
  • In 1915, following the Second Battle of Ypres, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, a physician with the Canadian Expeditionary Force, wrote the poem, “In Flanders Fields.” Its opening lines refer to the fields of poppies that grew among the soldiers’ graves in Flanders. In 1918, inspired by the poem, YWCA worker Moina Michael attended a YWCA Overseas War Secretaries’ conference wearing a silk poppy pinned to her coat and distributed over two dozen more to others present. In 1920, the National American Legion adopted it as their official symbol of remembrance.
  • On May 26, 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson designated an “official” birthplace of the holiday by signing the presidential proclamation naming Waterloo, New York, as the holder of the title. This action followed House Concurrent Resolution 587, in which the 89th Congress had officially recognized that the patriotic tradition of observing Memorial Day had begun one hundred years prior in Waterloo, New York. The village credits druggist Henry C. Welles and county clerk John B. Murray as the founders of the holiday.

Test Your Knowledge: Defining Dirigo

Dirigo Pines is named after Maine’s state motto: Dirigo. It’s on the flag, the Maine coat of arms, the state seal. But what does it mean? Quiz yourself or quiz your friends and test your Dirigo knowledge…

  1. The word “Dirigo” is latin for:
    1. Pine Tree State
    2. I Lead
    3. Oceanside
  2. What analogy of “Dirigo” is represented on the state seal?
    1. North Star
    2. Moose
    3. Pine Tree
  3. What two professions are represented on the state seal?
    1. Blueberry Picker and Lobsterman
    2. Farmer and Sailor
    3. Football Player and Businessman
  4. Maine was a part of the commonwealth of Massachusetts, until what year? 
    1. 1790
    2. 1805
    3. 1820
  5. One other way Maine leads the nation is being the first to see what?
    1. The sunrise
    2. Election results
    3. Blackflies in the summer

Bonus Question: Besides Dirigo, name 5 other Maine nicknames or slogans. 1 point per answer!



  1. B. Dirigo is Latin for “I Direct” or “I Lead.”
  2. A. The North Star is considered the mariner’s guide, just as Maine was the leader or guide for the nation. Maine was once been the only state to hold its elections in September and that how we got the phrase “As Maine goes, so goes the nation.”
  3. B. Farmer and Sailor. A farmer rests on his scythe and a sailor leans on an anchor.
  4. C. 1820. On March 15, 1820, under the Missouri Compromise, Maine was admitted to the Union as the 23rd state.
  5. A. The summit of Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park and Lubec, Maine are 2 of the first spots to see the sunrise each morning. Though, the blackfly answer could be debated too 🙂

Possible Bonus Answers: The Pine Tree State, Vacationland, Worth a Visit – Worth a Lifetime, The Way Life Should Be, Where America’s Day Begins. How many more can you come up with?

Celebrate Mom with Fun, Local Events

It’s time to celebrate Mom — now, what to do? Go beyond flowers and trinkets, and plan a mini adventure. All around Dirigo Pines there are fun events, perfect for spending some quality time with Mom and showing your appreciation for all she does. Here are just a few of the fun things going on around Mother’s Day:

  • Color Bangor 5K: Get the whole family moving and sign up for the Color Bangor 5K, a fundraiser for the American Folk Festival, taking place the Saturday before Mother’s Day. Walk, run or skip through multiple color stations throughout Bangor, where volunteers cover participants in colored corn-starch powder. It’s fun, it’s messy and mom will love it. Click here for more info and to register.
  • Mother’s Day at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens: Take Mother’s Day flowers to the next level and treat mom to garden after garden at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay (a little over 2 hours if you take scenic Route 1 — click here for directions). Enjoy the early tulip display and other spring ephemerals with mom this Mother’s Day. All moms receive free admission to the gardens on Sunday, May 12. Visit for more information.
  • Catch a Show: Penobscot Theatre in Bangor has a great line-up of shows for Mom! Catch the last performance of Fun Home on May 12, or pick up tickets now for a June or July show of Mamma Mia. Click here for tickets and details:
  • All Roads Music Festival: Does mom love music? The weekend after Mother’s Day, May 17 and 18, is the perfect time to visit nearby Belfast (only about an hour away — click here for driving directions) and enjoy some of Maine’s favorite indie musicians. The lineup this year includes Rustic Overtones, The Mallett Brothers, Spose, Paranoid Social Club, Kenya Hall and more! Tickets start at $20. Visit to get yours and surprise mom.
  • Wingfest Maine 2019: How about tickets to Wingfest Maine for some excellent sampling, judging and just plain fun. Restaurants around the area offer up their tastiest wings for participants to taste test. Coming May 30 to the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor. Visit for more info and tickets.

Have your own great idea for Mother’s Day fun? Share it with us!

May the Cinco de Derby Be With You

If you’re looking for a reason to celebrate and have fun with friends, this weekend’s got you covered! From Star Wars fans to Mexican food to horse races, we’re combining this Saturday and Sunday’s festivities into one big “May the Cinco de Derby” weekend.

Saturday, May 4 (aka May the Fourth) is Star Wars Day: Use the force and celebrate Luke, Leia, Han, Chewy and the gang on this “punny” day. “May the Fourth Be With You” started as a clever play on words and is now a full fledged holiday. We recommend gathering friends from galaxies both near and far, far away for a movie night — or even an all day marathon! Click here for the recipe for a yummy Avocado Pesto Dip to serve to guests. And click here for more fun ways to celebrate — and May the Fourth be with you!

Saturday, May 4 marks the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby: Louisville, Kentucky hosts one of the biggest horse races of the year at 6:50 p.m. Did you know the Kentucky Derby is only open to 3-year-old Thoroughbreds? Who will be victorious this year: Omaha Beach? Improbable? Game Winner? (Don’t you just love horse names?) Some must-haves for the perfect derby party include a big, fun hat (make it a contest for the most creative!) and the perfect Mint Julep (get the recipe here). Have guests wage friendly bets (winner gets to host the next party?) and enjoy the race!

Sunday, May 5 is Cinco de Mayo: Cinco de Mayo celebrates the date of the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War. While it’s actually not that big of a deal in Mexico, here in the U.S., it’s turned into a reason to enjoy Mexico food dishes and fiesta! So invite your amigos over for some tasty treats and a margarita! Check out this recipe for Sweet Potato Nachos for a twist on a classic.

Or go for a trifecta and combine all 3 festivities into one big May the Cinco de Derby celebration with Mint Juleps, nachos, horse races and a movie night!

Register by Friday for The Heart of the Pines Golf Tournament!

The cost is $60 per player, with 4-person teams. The fee includes a cart and lunch. And lots prizes will be given out during lunch following the tournament!

All proceeds will go to the American Heart Association.

To register, contact Laurie Cates at 866-3400 or email Register by May 3!

Interested in sponsoring? Sponsor a hole for just $75! Contact Laurie. All proceeds will go to the American Heart Association.

Dirigo Dish: Tuna-Stuffed Avocados with Corn Salsa

Fresher, lighter lunches are the things springtime is made of. Try this tasty dish from the American Heart Association, packed with fresh corn, tomatoes, avocados, lime juice and tuna. Find even more heart healthy recipes at!


For the Salsa:

  • ears corn, shucked and kernels cut off
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 1 cup chopped tomato (about 1 medium tomato)
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 Tbsp finely chopped red onion
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped jalapeño
  • 2 Tbsp. lime juice, plus more if needed (from 1 lime)

For the Tuna:

  • 1 (12.6-ounce) pouch chunk light tuna in water
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/3 cup fat-free, plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, plus more as needed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • avocados (halved, pitted)


For the Salsa:

  1. Use a knife to slice the kernels off 2 ears of corn. Add corn into a heatproof container with 1 tablespoon water, cover, and heat until cooked, about 1 to 2 minutes. Cool to use in the salsa.
  2. Prepare the other ingredients, chopping the tomato, cilantro, red onion, and jalapeno. Add into a bowl, along with the corn and lime juice.
  3. Stir together to combine. Taste, adding more lime juice or jalapeno depending on desired taste. Let sit for flavors to mingle.

For the Tuna:

  1. In a medium bowl, add the tuna. Chop the celery and add to the tuna.
  2. Into the tuna, stir in yogurt, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
  3. Mix the prepared corn salsa into the tuna.
  4. Halve and remove the pit from each avocado. Drizzle a little lemon juice on the top of each avocado half to prevent from browning. Spoon tuna mixture into each avocado half, packing as much tuna into each one as possible. (If the pit doesn’t leave large enough of a “cup” for the tuna, spoon a tiny bit of the avocado out to fill it up with tuna.)
  5. Serve immediately or place in the fridge to chill before serving.
The American Heart Association’s website is a great place for seniors and people of all ages to find delicious heart healthy recipes. Click here for more AHA recipes!