1. Well, well, well, it looks like summer decided to make a last minute appearance this week! It’s been a doozy of a gorgeous few days here in Maine, and it looks like it’s going to last right through the weekend. What fun can we get up to this time? In the Bangor area, Friday brings some nifty events like the annual Acadia Hospital Battle of the Bands, featuring the Allison Ames Band and Motor Booty Affair, at the Cross Insurance Center, the Tune Squad at Paddy Murphy’s, Allison Bankston and Hippie Soup at Nocturnem Drafthaus, and Here and Now at the Sea Dog. Up in Orono, Wyld Lyfe is at Woodman’s, and the Villains are at Black Bear Brewing. On Saturday, the Norumbega Collective hosts a reading by writers Douglas Milliken and Morghen Tidd at 7 p.m. at the Rock & Art Shop, while later on downtown, the OGs are at Paddy’s, Happy Folk are at Nocturnem, Stesha Cano is at the Sea Dog, and country singer Mark Gentle at the Downunder Club at Seasons. There’s also the public performances of the results of Ten Bucks Theatre’s annual 24 hour play festival, with the brand new plays set for 7 p.m. at Comins Hall in Eddington; it’s weekend two of “The Fabulous Lipitones” at Penobscot Theatre, and the new Collins Center for the Arts season officially kicks off with an 8 p.m. performance from world-renowned modern dance troupe Pilobolus.
2. Down Portland way, Friday night brings some cool shows including The Alternate Routes and Nick Fradiani at Port City Music Hall, Michael Graves and Covered in Bees at Empire, Aldous Harding, Wildflower and Artie Appleseed at Space Gallery, and OC and the Offbeats and Luniere at Bayside Bowl. There’s also the long-awaited Portland return of Lettuce, with Chali 2Na, Percy Hill and Armies on the Maine State Pier, and there’s some great local metal with Pigboat, Holy Filth and Boat Dares at Geno’s. On Saturday, the Trey Anastasio Band rocks Thompson’s Point, it’s Pearl Jam tribute night at Portland House of Music, songwriter Ari Hest is at One Longfellow Square, and Brzkowski, Billy Woods and Myles Bullen are at Bayside Bowl. There’s also a night of New England punk rock at Geno’s with Port City Saints, Silver Screams, Michael Kane and the Morning Afters, Seasonal Disorders and Oh The Humanity.
3. In Belfast on Friday, the lovingly restored Crosby Center plays host to some excellent Americana music, including return of seriously talented duo The Coloradas, with Dylan Earl and the Reasons Why, and the Midnight Riders. Also on Friday, Primo Cubano performs at the Unity College Center for the Performing Arts. On Saturday, the Jazz de Mundo Quintet plays at Rock City Coffee in Rockland. On Sunday, Roochie Toochie and the Ragtime Shepherd Kings take the stage at Waterfall Arts in Belfast.
4. This weekend brings the Camden International Film Festival, one of the most dynamic film events in New England, and a mecca for documentary film lovers nationwide. The event started Thursday, and runs through Sunday, with more than 50 feature-length and short films shown in venues throughout Camden, Rockport and Rockland. It’s hard to pick out just a handful here to highlight, so I suggest simply clicking through here to see all the different movies available to watch. I’ve been to the festival before, and I can’t recommend it enough — especially if you’re a doc junkie like me. Full passes and single screening passes are available at ticket HQ on Bayview Street in Camden.
5. Also this weekend is the first-ever Bangor Celtic Crossroads Festival, a long-in-the-works celebration of Celtic music right here in the Bangor area. The festival began Thursday night, with storytelling and harp music at 6 p.m. at the Bangor Public Library, and an Irish session at 8 p.m. upstairs at Paddy Murphy’s. Friday night, Irish ensemble Coig plays at 7:30 p.m. at the Hammond Street Congregational Church. On Saturday, there’s Celtic story time at the Briar Patch, there’s Irish genealogy sessions all day at the Bangor Public Library, fiddler Gus LaCasse plays at 4 p.m. at Paddy Murphy’s, and at 7:30 p.m., Matt and Shannon Heaton play at the Hammond Street Congregational Church. Tickets for Friday and Saturday night’s concerts are $20.