Things to Do
- Ride the shuttle: Skip the hassle of campus parking on busy game days and campus visits by riding the Black Bear Express around town!
- Check out the region's best cluster of restaurant & Bars: Black Bear Brewery, Bear Brew Pub, Family Dog, Harvest Moon Deli, Margarita's, Pat's Pizza, Thai Orchid, Verve, The Roost Pub and Wingery, Woodman's Grill, Orono Brewing Company, Marsh Island Brewing
- Partake of coffee, sandwiches, baked good, groceries: Butterfingers Bakery, Circle K, Subway, The Nest, The Store-Ampersand.
- Don't forget the veggies: Orono Farmer's Market - "winter" market in Downtown; "summer" market at University Steam Plant parking lot
- Browse for special items: Byer of Maine (camp furniture and hammocks), DeGrasse Jewelers, Front Porch Books, Rose's Bike and Ski Shop, Shaw and Tenney (wooden oars and paddles)
- Stay overnight, within walking distance of the University: University Inn
- Feel like a new you: Dick's Barber Shop, Erv's Barber Shop, Fringe Salon, Hair After
- Fix the headache: Orono Pharmacy
- Fix the car: Murray's Campus Service Center, Swett's Tire and Auto
- Treat yourself to fine wines and hand-crafted beer: Black Bear Microbrew, Burby and Bates, The Store-Ampersand
- Get one with nature: Walk the Stillwater River trail; kayak or canoe from hand-carry landings on the Stillwater River at the end of Summer Street, at University Inn, or at Brownie's Park along the Stillwater River trail
- Listen to a summer concert: Every Tuesday evening during the summer at Webster Park
- Learn and connect: Orono Public Library, Keith Anderson Community Center
- Experience history: Walk the Orono Main Street Historic District with twenty-nine 19th Century and turn-of-the-century buildings covering all of the major styles of a hundred years
- Take a dip at the Town's outdoor pool next to the Orono school campus
Orono's current Downtown Plan dates back to 1995 (PDF), with significant updates through 2011. The updates included a new market analysis (PDF) and a fresh look at facade improvements (PDF).
Investing In Downtown
Downtown Orono - with its mix of longstanding businesses and newcomers, college youth and senior citizens, riverfront and trails - is the dynamic core of Orono. It is a strong address for restaurants, businesses catering to a University market, and professional and RandD offices. More than a decade ago, the Town, in cooperation with Downtown merchants and residents, reaffirmed its commitment to a healthy Downtown. It has since:
- Built a new, LEED-certified public library in Downtown
- Established a Downtown Development District, which is jointly administered by the Town and the Orono Village Association
- Initiated the Black Bear Orono Express, a shuttle bus between Downtown and the University of Maine campus - jointly developed by the University, Town, OVA, Maine DOT and BAT Connector
- Established a fund for capital investments in Downtown and to help pay for the shuttle bus
- In cooperation with OVA, engaged the University of Maine Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center to help market Downtown
- Established a Downtown riverfront park on the banks of the Stillwater, as part of an evolving in-town trail system
Keep up to date with the plan to redevelop the former Katahdin Building site at the center of Downtown for University Credit Union's new headquarters.