Fido Friendly - Fall 2006


Maine Teen Camp Kids and Pampered Pets Alike Enjoy Maine in the Summer Time

The General Manager of Portland Maine's Eastover Resort with Stephanie Abrams and her two Springer Spaniel's, Molly and Beau.

In my role as “Stephanie Abrams Travel Fairy Godmother,” I often send people on trips that I believe they need to take as much as they need to breathe. One of my recurring wand-wavings is a four-week trip I sponsor at the Maine Teen Camp in Porter, Maine, for three teens. The teenagers are identifed by the Giving Tree Outreach Program of Tucson, Arizona, which assists needy kids and rescues homeless kids from the streets of Tucson. This year I few Kamisha and Alex, 14 and 15, and Eric, also 15 and who was returning for his second summer at camp, to the East Coast for their participation at this wonderland for teenagers.

The best part is that Molly and Beau, our Springer Spaniels, got to go to camp for a day as well! Wanting to visit the teens mid-session at camp, we piled into the car and took off from our home in the beautiful Berkshire Mountains in western Massachusetts and headed to Maine. Our furry family members were fast asleep before we reached the end of our street—no surprise there, since our dogs love to travel! Kamisha, Eric, Alex and their chaperones, Libby Wright Giovingo (the founder and executive director of the Giving Tree Outreach Program) and her husband Carlo, had visited with us in the Berkshires upon their arrival from Tucson. It was clear that the teens enjoyed exploring the Berkshires, having Molly and Beau visit them at the pet-friendly Crowne Plaza Berkshires in Pittsfeld, MA, and joining Molly and Beau for swims in our lake.

Giving Tree Kids at the Maine Teen Camp getting a visit from Molly, Beau and Stephanie Abrams.

I knew that the teens, three thousand miles away from Tucson, would enjoy a visit from Molly and Beau as much as a visit from us. . .or maybe more! Our preparation for the trip started a week earlier with a visit to the groomer. We certainly wanted to put our best paw forward! We made our reservations at the pet-friendly historic hotel, The Eastland Park Hotel, in Portland, about forty-fve minutes drive from the camp. Spokespersons from the hotel had been on as guests-by-telephone during the Traveling Paws segment on the nationally syndicated radio shows, “Travel WITH Stephanie Abrams” and “Traveling Feet” that I host weekly as the travel expert. The hotel's special programs for dogs were the magnet that drew us to this property, and its close proximity to the camp made it an ideal location for our twelve feet! While I was impressed by the description of the dog-friendly atmosphere at The Eastland Park Hotel and motivated to want to see and experience it for myself with my pets, I have to say that they exceeded my expectations and clearly impressed Molly and Beau!

Kamisha is at Camp at the Maine Teen Camp enjoying a summer's day and ice cream

Pulling up at the hotel was a special experience. In a large display window to the right of the hotel entrance is a most unusual display: mannequins of dogs dressed in sweaters and a fre hydrant and pet toys with a large poster backdrop encouraging people to participate in the Eastland Park Hotel-sponsored “Take Your Dog To Work Day!” Now that's putting your philosophy of “dog-friendliness” really “to work.”

Molly and Beau stepped up to reception and knew this was a special place for dogs when they sniffed out special biscuits that were baked at a local dog bakery. Accompanying the biscuits, each received a welcome sack flled with a Frisbee; a copy of Downeast Dog News, published in Rockland, Maine; a doggy-poop sack for tidy walks; and a marvelous booklet called, “The Eastland Park Pampered Pets Guide to Pampering Your Pet in Portland, Maine,” with a frst-page welcome by Scout, the hotel's First Pooch, who signs off with a powerful paw print. This wonderful publication includes the following information to unique and vital services: A menu of all natural pet foods “for carnivorous canines with Back to Basics foods formulated to be the highest quality. . . holistic, all natural and balanced.” Each Pet Room Service order is delivered with an Eastland Park Hotel bowl for the pet to keep and a bottle of all natural spring water. Of course, like “people room service,” a twenty percent service charge is added to food costs.

A comprehensive list of pet shops, grooming services, pet sitting services (including such great names as Peace of Mind Pet Sitting, Creature Comforts, and The Pet Nanny), and veterinarians (including a twenty-four-hour emergency clinic).

An explanation of Portland's Poo policies, which include a maximum fne of $250, and Portland's Leash Laws, which carry a maximum fne of $75.

Suggested Walks which include: Deering Oaks Park, which provides lush greenery and a duck pond.

A series of trails that are part of the Portland Trails network including Back Cove Trail providing fabulous views of Portland's cityscape and Back Cove where you'll fnd paved and stone dust surfaces.

The Eastern Prom Trail, which takes you and Fido past memorable views of Casco Bay and its islands and the Portland cityscape.

This booklet provides detailed instructions for the visitor and pet that start at the entrance of the hotel and guide visitors to the parklands and trails to explore. To prove they've thought of everything that Fido and owner will need to enjoy Portland, a street map is included in the booklet.

Could you ask for more? You can, and you'll get it! Need to go out and leave Fido alone in the room? The Bell Man, when available, will take Fido out for a walk if you set up an appointment at the Bell Stand before you leave. And be sure to leave a contact number so you can be reached if needed.>

Impressed by all of the services provided by Eastland Park Hotel? You'll fnd these services duplicated at other Pampered Pets locations. Check out my award-winning website at for a comprehensive listing of hotels in California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, Texas, Wisconsin and Quebec that cater to Fido as well as other hotels you can count on to love you and your pet!

It's easy to see that a great time was had by all!

Gotta Fly Now! sm
Stephanie Abrams • Fall 2006

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