Down East 2013 ©
Photograph by Susan Cole Kelly
Maine is full of stories like this: a wealthy benefactor donates a stunning piece of land for public use. Ellis Park, as this area is sometimes known, was saved in perpetuity in August 1887; a present to the people of the area from the Ellis, Moseley, and Garmon families. Talk about foresight! This was long before development pressure put the squeeze on the state’s highly desirable — and relatively rare — stretches of beachfront and Realtors began to sell adjacent land for all it was worth. Although those generous families saw their share of tourists back then — the trolleys began running in 1897 — they couldn’t have imagined what the area would look like today. On August weekends, the public certainly puts this quarter-mile cul-de-sac of sand to good use. It fairly hops with people coming and going to the restaurants, shops, arcade, zoo, and candy store. The average summer here is a mix of umbrellas, sandcastles, bodysurfing, lifeguards, people-watching, and evening concerts in the bandstand. Have you ever been to this abbreviated beach? Send us a note at P.O. Box 679, Camden, ME 04843; whip off an email to email@example.com , or post a comment at www.DownEast.com  if you can identify it.