These five hubs are our biggest suppliers of lobster!
Sitting at the mouth of the Naurragaugus River, which empties into the bay of the same name, Milbridge is a tiny rural town of about 1,400 people, yet it acts as a supply hub for the even smaller communities that surround it. Shipbuilding was once a mainstay of the economy, but these days the major industries are lobstering, fishing, clamming, and blueberries. In fact, Milbridge and surrounding Washington County have the world’s highest concentration of low bush wild blueberries.
Stonington is a picturesque town of about 1,200 people at the Southern tip of Deer Isle, an island it shares with the town of Deer Isle proper. The town was named for its granite quarries, which were a major part of its economy at the turn of the century. Deer Island is accessible by bridge, so Stonington is a jumping off point for fishing and pleasure boats traveling to outer islands of the Penobscot Bay like Isle au Haut (pronounced eye-la-ho, in case you were wondering).
Casco Bay is an inlet just north of the city of Portland. It’s home to hundreds of islands, called the Calendar Islands. Casco bay is the hub for a huge fleet of lobster and deep sea fishing boats, which can choose between a number of marinas to unload their catch in the towns of Portland, Yarmouth, Falmouth, and Cape Elizabeth. Casco Bay served as a US Navy anchorage in World War II, and its boats are guided by the famous Portland Head Light in Luke’s hometown of Cape Elizabeth.
Vinalhaven is an island 12 miles from the coast of Maine. It was settled as a fishing and lobstering colony in 1766 and later took part in the granite boom as well. Today the island is home to only 1,200 people, yet it boasts Maine's largest lobster boat fleet. There's no bridge to the mainland, so residents are an hour-and-15-minute ferry ride from the mainland. But when you're surrounded by pristine, lobster-filled waters, who needs the mainland anyway?
The town of Boothbay Harbor sits on a peninsula jutting into the Gulf of Maine. Its protected waters have made it a fishing and boating center since the 18th century. Boothbay’s beautiful scenery and quaint village have made it a major tourist destination in recent years, but it has not strayed from its roots—fishing and lobstering remain a major part of the town’s economy, and even the tourists take to the sea on whale watches and other boating excursions.