Friday is the longest day of the year — the sun doesn’t go down until 8:30, and it won’t be fully dark out until 9:30 p.m. Celebrate the solstice in Bangor that evening with a downtown garden party, set for 4 to 6 p.m. in Norumbega Parkway, complete with croquet matches and fancy hats. Later that evening, take your pick from the Bangtown Swingers at Nocturnem Drafthaus, Adam Babcock at Paddy Murphy’s, Maine favorite Chris Ross plays at Blaze in downtown Bangor, and there’s standup comedy at Bangor Beer Company, featuring Mary Mack and Tim Harmston. Saturday brings the parade (noon) and festival (1-4 p.m.) for Bangor Pride, which we wrote about extensively here. It’s also the Best of the North Fest, a beer, wine and food fest set for Saturday afternoon on the Bangor Waterfront. That evening, there are Pride dance parties set for 7 p.m. at the Bangor Public Library (chem-free) and 9 p.m. at the Bangor Arts Exchange (not chem-free); One Sixty One is at Nocturnem, jam band Smoked Salmon is at Paddy’s, and at the Downunder Club at Seasons there’s a night of local metal bands, benefiting the Shaw House.
In Portland on Friday, take your pick from concerts including psychedelic bands Khruangbin and Kikagaku Moyo at the State Theatre, rockers Thank You Scientist, Bent Knee and Five of the Eyes at Port City Music Hall, Swedish jazz singer Gunhild Carling at Portland House of Music, local metal with Holy Filth, Devil’s Night Out, Cryptius and Goatery at Geno’s, and hip hop legend Talib Kweli at Bayside Bowl. At Aura, Geoff Tate and his band will perform Queensryche’s “Operation: Mindcrime” in its entirety, and out at the Maine Savings Pavilion in Westbrook, blues legend Buddy Guy is joined by Kenny Wayne Shepard. On Saturday, ska band the Expendables is at Aura, songwriters Amy Helm and Jonah Tolchin are at One Longfellow Square, and there’s more metal with Willzyx, Horrible Earth, Quiet Warning and Sores at Geno’s.
Along the coast, there are several wonderful folk and traditional concerts this weekend. On Saturday, at the Crosby Center in Belfast, legendary Maine songwriter David Mallett performs at 7 p.m. Also on Saturday, folk band Lula Wiles performs at the Criterion Theatre in Bar Harbor at 8 p.m. And on Sunday, the annual Acadia Trad Fest kicks off at College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, with a week of concerts, dances and workshops celebrating traditional music, beginning with Sunday’s contradance featuring Bennett Konesni, Ed Howe and Maggie Robinson, at 7 p.m. at Gates Auditorium.
In Orono, here’s something you don’t see every day: the “Wheel of Fortune” Wheelmobile will roll into town this weekend. It’ll park at the Collins Center for the Arts on the UMaine campus, and between 5 and 9 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday, you can register to potentially participate in a simulated show at the Collins Center, and maybe even be selected to be on the actual TV show. I’m not kidding. I mean, why not, right? It’s free, and it sounds like it might actually be kind of fun!
There are two movies opening this weekend that feature toys that come to life — albeit in drastically, dramatically different ways. Pixar’s long-awaited “Toy Story 4” hits theaters this weekend, as does a reboot of 80s horror classic “Child’s Play,” featuring Mark Hammill as the voice of Chucky. On TV, Netflix premieres a second season of the mind-bending drama “Dark.”