GARDINER — Michael Miclon was working his contact listing exhausting final Friday.
Simply two days after the Gardiner Metropolis Council accepted his request to placed on the Johnson Corridor Free Waterfront Live performance Sequence this yr, Miclon was scrambling to fill the eight Fridays, from July 9 to Aug. 27.
“We’re behind the eight ball,” Miclon, Johnson Corridor’s government creative director, mentioned final week.
As public well being restrictions are easing, extra individuals are getting vaccinated towards COVID-19 and quarantines for vacationers are being canceled, Miclon is just not alone. Organizers of occasions — massive and small — throughout Maine’s capital area are working to be able to welcome the general public again to festivals, agricultural festivals, live shows and different gatherings after more than a year of closures and cancellations.
Not all seasonal occasions will resume this yr, both due to timing or lingering issues about public well being. Historically, the summer time season in Gardiner kicks off with the Higher Gardiner River Competition on the finish of June, however that isn’t happening this yr. Neither is Outdated Hallowell Day or Richmond Days, each of which befell beforehand in July.
Others are going forward, with restrictions nonetheless in place. This yr, the fourth annual Kennebec River Brewfest, hosted by the Kennebec Valley Chamber of Commerce, is once more providing Brewfest To Go Cooler Baggage, full with space beers and seasonal swag, which will likely be obtainable for pickup between June 29 and July 2, reasonably than an in-person occasion.
For greater than a yr, the Johnson Corridor Performing Arts Heart has placed on a collection of livestreamed occasions from the historic opera home on Water Road due to COVID-19 public well being restrictions which have made public gatherings unattainable.
Now, nonetheless, Miclon is reserving stay acts for out of doors live shows and contemplating what he may have the ability to e book for Johnson Corridor’s Studio theater starting in September.
“I’ve obtained to get to my individuals actually quick,” Miclon mentioned, as a result of his is just not the one venue opening up once more.
Miclon mentioned he anticipated bands which have gone with out work for greater than a yr can be reserving dates and filling their calendars this summer time.
When the Gardiner Metropolis Council accepted Miclon’s request, it additionally accepted the applying submitted by the Traditional Cruisin’ on the Waterfront Park on Thursdays, from June to September, a well-liked occasion that attracts traditional, classic and different distinctive cars.
Augusta can be planning a summer time season of occasions, together with completely different choices for a Fourth of July celebration and occasions which have turn out to be traditions.
“We’re doing Films within the Park as soon as once more this summer time,” mentioned Michael Corridor, government director of the Augusta Downtown Alliance.
The films, sponsored by Bangor Financial savings Financial institution, are to start at Augusta’s Waterfront Park starting at nightfall July 15 and 22 and Aug. 5 and 12, with rain dates set for July 29 and Aug. 19.
In June, Corridor mentioned, a Enterprise After Hours on the Colonial Theatre has been scheduled, which is predicted to be the primary public gathering in downtown Augusta because the pandemic was declared in March 2020.
Corridor mentioned town can be planning Waterfront Wednesdays most weeks in the course of the summer time, and different particular occasions are within the works. From there, Corridor is remaining optimistic.
“Halloween is occurring full-scale this yr” Corridor mentioned. “As a result of if we’re nonetheless like this in October, there’s no hope.”
Outdoors the area’s cities, organizers of agricultural festivals have been preparing for the truthful season, starting with the Monmouth Truthful, the primary truthful of the season, scheduled to start June 23.
“We’re in full-force planning proper now,” Diana Morgan, president of the Monmouth Truthful board, mentioned just lately. “We’re simply making an attempt to placed on a good that will likely be secure for everybody. We hope that individuals will likely be anxious to return out and have some fries and fried dough.”
Even with rising vaccination charges, truthful organizers are planning for guaranteeing social distancing at occasions and guaranteeing handwashing or sanitizer stations can be found for guests.
Whereas a requirement to put on protecting masks in public locations is just not anticipated to be in power when Gardiner’s Waterfront Live performance Sequence begins, different measures will likely be in place to restrict contact with individuals.
“The workers working there and the volunteers will likely be vaccinated,” Miclon mentioned. “However we’re not going to do raffles, as a result of we’re going to do the least quantity of touching as attainable.”
The Gardiner Rotary Membership is planning to promote scorching canines and hamburgers, and different occasions are within the works.
“This can be a signal of main positivity,” Miclon mentioned.