A fun summer night listening to the Barenaked Ladies at the Maine State Pier.

I was intrigued by the Maine State Pier music venue. I loved the idea of hanging out on the waterfront while listening to music, so when they started announcing the musical acts that would be playing at this young venue over the summer, we quickly grabbed a couple of tickets to see the Barenaked Ladies “Last Summer on Earth 2016” tour.

As with most tickets, you buy them so far ahead of time, there’s often a disconnect between when you buy them and when you actually go to the show, but eventually the night arrived and we headed to Portland. Apparently, there’s also a disconnect on how long it takes to get the blog post up too since this show was back in June and I’m finally getting around to posting about it! Good news though, there are still more concerts scheduled at Maine State Pier with an especially busy block of shows the first few days of September. You can check out the full schedule HERE.

The night of the show, things got off to a bit of a rocky start as my husband’s flight back to Portland was delayed. Rather than having a nice leisurely happy hour stop before the show, as we had planned, we were rushing into the city hoping we would get there before the Barenaked Ladies. We knew from our tickets that there were a couple of opening acts, so we had some wiggle room. Fortunately, that was the only unexpected negative that happened. The rest of the night was a perfect Maine summer evening relaxing on the Maine State Pier listening to great music.

I had read many mixed reviews of the Maine State Pier venue so was a little unsure of what to expect. We had reserved seats in the second section back from the stage and most of the negative reviews I had seen were focused on the general admission seats which are further back. Certainly there’s a lot of activity happening in the general admission area, and I can understand where it could feel distracting, but our seats were great and I loved the vibe of the venue.

As we turned the corner off commercial street and onto the pier, we spotted a long line snaking its way through the security check. We walked to the end and were happy to find it was moving at a nice clip. We entered the venue as the first warm up act Howard Jones was on the stage.

We thought it would be easier to grab drinks at the bar setup immediately inside the entrance rather than get to our seats first and venture out again. The bar line was much slower than the line to get in, but we had views of the stage while we waited so it was pleasant. Later, we did learn that there are multiple bar areas throughout the area, including one close to where we were sitting, so our initial stop when entering was not needed. Beer choices were a bit limited especially for my husband’s taste, but there was a cider option, which is his new favorite thing, so all was not lost.

Our seats were in the first row of the second section back. We picked them thinking that we’d have more leg room, which was true, but the down side is that we had people walking in front of use throughout the show as it was not obvious that there was a walking path setup in the section in front of us.

By the time the second opening act, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, took the stage, we were happily in our seats, sipping our drinks, and enjoying the view. The energy of the crowd picked as soon as the band started. They were a fun, nostalgic walk through the eighties.

During intermission, I wandered around the venue enjoying the ocean views. There were tall ships docked on the side of the pier adding a nautical feel to the festivities, and the views of the Portland skyline were beautiful especially as the sun began to set.

The Barenaked Ladies put on a great show. I especially enjoyed people watching during the concert. There was a Mom dancing with her daughter on her shoulders for most of the show, and both were so happy and joyful. There was also a couple who performed a synchronized dance to OMD’s song “If You Leave”. There’s always endless activity at a concert.

I also want to thank the Barenaked Ladies for coming out for their encore even though the crowd struggled to chant B-N-L. There was however lots of clapping and cheering!

I think Maine State Pier was a fantastic concert venue. It helped that it was a gorgeous night and, to me, felt like a true Maine summer experience. It is the type of venue where there is a lot of activity happening in and around the site so I can see where you may not want to come to a show where you want to focus 100% on the musical act. But, I feel concerts are about the complete experience, not just the music, so this location definitely worked for me, and I’ll be watching for future shows.

Barenaked Ladies at the Maine State Pier

Barenaked Ladies at the Maine State Pier


things to know
Destination Maine State Pier
Address Commercial Street/Franklin Arterial
Portland, ME 04101
Website Maine State Pier
Favorite ♥ Harbor Views

WIM Signature

2 thoughts on “A fun summer night listening to the Barenaked Ladies at the Maine State Pier.

  1. dyannedillon says:

    What a great line up! Go see Blues Traveler and The Wallflowers for me!

    We took the kids to see Taylor Swift a few years ago, and I had to buy the tickets nine months before the concert date. I could have grown a baby in that time! Well, not ME, but SOMEONE could have grown a baby in that time!

    Liked by 1 person

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