Some summer activities unfold organically as a lazy weekend lays before you and you decide a day or two before how you want to get the most from the warm days. Other events take a bit more planning. You need to clear your schedule and, in some cases, get tickets ahead of time so that you don’t miss out on the fun.
Both types of activities have a place on my summer to do list, but for those that require advanced planning now is the time to start marking them down on the calendar. With that in mind, here’s a hit list of a few of the festivals happening in Maine this summer that are worth planning for ahead of time.
Old Port Festival | Portland, Maine | Sunday, June 12, 2016, from 11 AM — 5 PM
Every year the Old Port Festival kicks-off the summer season. If you’re in the area I encourage you to give this one a try. It’s always a fun day. There is an abundance of music playing across seven different stages. There are also vendors and crafters along with many delicious food and drink options. It’s family friendly too with games and activities for kids. The Casco Bay Eye Ferris Wheel looks especially intriguing.
There are also other weekend activities planned prior to the festival including Walk the Working Waterfront, and Shop for a Cause in suport of Portland Trails, both being held on Saturday, June 11th.
Why I want to go to this one… Portland is my favorite city, and any event that highlights all the great things the city offers is on the top of my list.
Allagash Street Fair | Portland, Maine | Saturday, July 9th 2016, from 1-6 PM | Cost $20
This is the 2nd annual street fair. We went last year and it was fabulous. They block off the road by Allagash Brewing Company on Industrial Way in Portland to make way for the festivities. You can enjoy beer from not only Allagash but also other participating brewers. They also have some fun food options provided by a variety of local food trucks and restaurants. Last year at the street fair, I had my first Eventide Oyster Company Lobster Roll which was delicious. They also have street performances, craft vendors and entertainment throughout the festival. From the list of the activities on their website, this year’s fair looks to be even bigger than the last years.
Why I want to go to this one… I tend to be the tag along when it comes to craft beer as that’s really my husbands area, but I discovered recently that I love Allagash White so any festival that features my new (for me) beer of choice is worth a visit.
Maine Brewers’ Guild 2016 Summer Beer Festival | Portland, Maine | Saturday, July 23rd, from 1-5 PM | $49
I’ve always been intrigued by the Maine Brewers’ Guild beer trail especially since my husband is unofficially visiting all the beer stops already. While we haven’t yet started working our way through the beer trail, this summer festival looks fun and maybe it will finally motivate us onto the beer trail.
Either way, it definitely would make for a wonderful summer afternoon. There is an extensive list of Maine brewers who will be participating, with over fifty already listed on the festival website. Thompson’s point has a large open gathering space and the event allows lawn chairs so you can find your spot, spread out and enjoy the many craft brewers and food trucks in attendance.
Why I want to go to this one… Having so many great craft brewers in one spot will make for a spectacular day plus I am enjoying watching as Thompson’s Point continues to develop into a great destination and event venue.
Maine Lobster Festival | Rockland, Maine | August 3 – 7, 2016
I’ve been to the Maine Lobster Festival before, although it was quite a while ago so I’m sure a lot has changed and I’m definitely overdue for another visit. This is a five-day festival with each day offering a range of fun activities from races, a parade, entertainment and of course lobster, lobster, and more lobster. If you have a favorite recipe that you’re known for making, be sure to enter the seafood cooking contest, or just kick back and enjoy the array of other activities available. The Great International Lobster Crate Race looks especially fun.
Why I want to go to this one… Anyplace with lobster is a place that I want to be!
Common Ground Country Fair | Unity, Maine | September 23, 24 and 25, 2016 | $10 in Advance / $15 Day of the Fair
This is one festival I’ve been planing to get to for years, but the timing has always been challenging with the start of the school year. Hopefully, this is the year that I can make it work. It would be a great wrap up the summer fun. This is a large agricultural fair put on by the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association and, according to their website, over 60,000 people attend each year. This is a really big event and there is a full list of activities on their website.
Why I want to go to this one… I love learning about local, organic food options in Maine and this fair has got that and so much more covered.
There are quite a few other events and festivals planned in and around Maine this summer. This list is just a few highlights to get you started as you plan out your summer activities. Summer is a such a busy time, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to get to all of these amazing events, but they’re definitely on my “really, really hope to” list.