Maine Bed & Breakfast Owner Will Sell Her Inn To Anyone For Just 200 Words

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What’s the price of a dream?

According to one innkeeper in western Maine, $125, no more than 200 words and a postage stamp will do.

More than two decades after a Maine couple gave away the Center Lovell Inn and Restaurant to the winner of an essay contest, the woman who won the quaint year-round inn with views of the White Mountains will once again offer up the 12-acre property to a hopeful, persuasive entrant in the same unorthodox way.

Janice Sage, the owner and innkeeper of the Center Lovell Inn and Restaurant, wants to retire. Rather than sell the inn traditionally, however, she is holding an essay contest to find the person who will treat the old place right. She is charging $125 per entry, and hopes to attract at least 7,500 contestants, netting her the $900,000 estimated value of the property.

Where did she get the idea to hand off the inn that way? That’s how she got it.


Back in 1993, the Center Lovell Inn was owned by Bil and Susie Mosca. They held an essay contest, charging $100 per entry, and Janice was the winner. The contest attracted a lot of media attention at the time, including a feature on The Phil Donahue Show. Janice doesn’t have the media power of the Donahue behind her, but she does have the Internet. What do you say? Do you want to help make her rich, and have a chance at owning your own piece of history in the process?

The Center Lovell Inn was built in 1805, and features two outbuildings, as well as scenic views of Kezar Lake and the White Mountains. There are 10 guest bedrooms, a 40-seat dining room, and ghosts, probably. Probably lots of ghosts.

Check out how to enter here. All entries must be mailed in by May 17. The essay must be no more than 200 words, written in English, and explain why the writer is the right caretaker for the inn. It must be typed or legibly handwritten. The rules don’t say anything about essays written in calligraphy with a quill pen on a piece of faded parchment, but you should definitely do that. If you think you’re going to beat that person, you just don’t understand B&B culture. And the Center Lovell Inn will never be yours. Good luck, though.

Source credit : Happyplace