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Presque Isle

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Presque Isle is the largest city in Aroostook County, Maine's northernmost county. The city is also the starting point for the world’s largest scale model of the solar system, which runs along U.S. Route 1 to the town of Houlton, 40 miles away. You can see the center of this solar system at the University of Maine at Presque Isle. The town also rests on the eastern edge of the great North Woods, so you can use it as a home base to go snowmobiling, hunting, fishing, hiking or mountain biking. At The Nordic Heritage Center, you'll find one of America's top competition winter biathlon courses. You can also go cross-country skiing and mountain biking here for free.

History

Northern Maine's location as the closest U.S. landmass to Europe led to Presque Isle's selection as the take-off for planes and equipment going overseas during World War II. It was also chosen as the departure point for the Double Eagle II hot air balloon in 1978. The Double Eagle II landed roughly 137 hours later in Misery, France, making it the first hot air balloon to cross the Atlantic. You can see a monument that has been erected in honor of the flight at the launching site.

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