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Downtown Countdown to ring in 2018

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A large beach ball is held aloft atop Paddy Murphy’s in downtown Bangor to get the crowd gathered in West Market Square excited just moments before the stroke of midnight as the city rang in 2017 as part of last year’s Downtown Countdown. A large beach ball is held aloft atop Paddy Murphy’s in downtown Bangor to get the crowd gathered in West Market Square excited just moments before the stroke of midnight as the city rang in 2017 as part of last year’s Downtown Countdown. (edge photo/Kevin Bennett)

BANGOR – Downtown Bangor is once again going to be the place to be when ringing in the New Year, with numerous events and performances aimed at making your New Year’s Eve celebration an exciting one.

The Downtown Bangor Partnership has been a part of this event since its inception 11 years ago. This year, Greater Bangor Coffee Chat has joined the fun, helping to promote the 12th year of the event.

Downtown Countdown is an annual highlight, one of the many events that make the City of Bangor a special and unique place. And with loads of happenings taking place all day, there’s something exciting for everyone.

It should be noted that, in a departure from previous years, there will be no admission buttons or badges. The majority of events are free; those that are not will have individual ticketed admission according to the venue.

From 8 a.m. all the way to the legendary ball drop from the roof of Paddy Murphy’s at midnight, there’s a whole lot going on.

Here are just a few of the highlights:

West Market Square is going to be bustling all day long. There will be an ice throne carving at 1 p.m., sponsored by Camden National Bank. There’s will be a dance party for kids in the tent at 7 p.m. The Dragon Keeper Fire Spinners will be on the scene at 8 and 10 p.m. Plus, the various businesses surrounding the square – West Market Artisan Coffee House, Mexicali Blues, BLAZE – will be hosting assorted events during the day and into the night.

The Maine Discovery Museum will be hopping with kid-friendly happenings all day; regular museum admission applies. The Bangor Public Library will be hosting some family fun stuff as well. There will be a pair of Story Slams as well – one at Fork & Spoon at 9 p.m., the other at West Market Square Artisan Coffee House at 10:30 p.m.

And music, of course. There will be bands playing all over downtown – you can find tunes at The Rock & Art Shop, Nocturnem Draft Haus, Happy Endings, BLAZE, the Union Street Brick Church and in the West Market Square tent.

There are also a couple of ticketed music events happening that sound like a heck of a time.

Penobscot Theatre Company is hosting “I’m Your Diva Tonight” at the Bangor Opera House. It’s a cabaret of sorts, featuring the wildly talented vocalist Clare Bathe performing songs from three music legends – Whitney Houston, Tina Turner and Aretha Franklin. There will be two performances – one at 6 p.m. and the other at 9 p.m.

For fans of Prince, Bangor Arts Exchange is presenting Dean Ford & the Beautiful Ones at the Ballroom, with doors opening at 8 p.m. and the show starting at 9. Ford’s Prince tribute has achieved legendary status among those in the know – it’s a wonderful way for BAE to celebrate their very first New Year’s Eve as part of the Downtown Bangor cultural scene.

What’s not to love about a daylong celebration of both the year that was and the one that is yet to come? Downtown Countdown has long been a highlight of the city’s social calendar – this year is no different. Nothing more needs to be said – just head downtown for some or all of what this year’s Countdown has to offer!

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Downtown Countdown Schedule of Events

8:00 A.M. - The Charles Inn Free Waffle Tasting

8:00 A.M. West Market Square Artisan Coffee House – Tasting

9:00 A.M. Registration – Epic 5K Race Finale Road Race - Regular race admission

10:00 A.M. – Epic 5K Finale Road Race

10:30 A.M. After Race Party - Happy Endings

12:00 P.M. Face Painting - Maine Discovery Museum (Regular museum admission)

1:00 P.M. Make Hats and Noisemakers - Maine Discovery Museum (Regular museum admission)

1:00 P.M. Ice Throne Carving - West Market Square - Sponsored by Camden National Bank

2:00 P.M. Henna Demonstration - Mexicali Blues

2:30 P.M. Fractured Fairy Tales, by Ten Bucks Theatre - West Market Square Artisan Coffee House

3:00 P.M. Wax Fortune Casting - Maine Discovery Museum (Regular museum admission)

4:00 P.M. Maine Home Roaster Coffee Demonstration - West Market Square Artisan Coffee House

4:00 P.M. Make Hats and Noisemakers - Maine Discovery Museum (Regular museum admission)

4:00 P.M. – 9:00 P.M. Photo Booth - Memory Maker Photography - Lobby, The Charles Inn

4:45 P.M. Animal Show – Maine Discovery Museum (Regular museum admission)

5:00 P.M. Family Friendly Party! - Bangor Public Library

6:00 P.M. Museum Parade - Maine Discovery Museum (Regular museum admission)

6:00 P.M. I'm Your Diva Tonight! - Penobscot Theatre (Regular theatre admission)

6:30 P.M. Maine Home Roasters Coffee Demonstration - West Market Square Artisan Coffee House

6:45 P.M. Face Painting – Maine Discovery Museum (Regular museum admission)

7:00 P.M. Tough End String Band – Rock & Art Shop

7:00 P.M. Photo Art Show, Bob Van Lindt - Rock & Art Shop

7:00 P.M. Violin Duo Recital & Festive Reception - St. Johns Church

7:00 P.M. Kids Dance Party - West Market Square Tent

8:00 P.M. Dragon Keeper Fire Spinners - West Market Square

8:00 P.M. The Rotating Taps – Nocturnem Draft Haus

8:00 P.M. The Beautiful Ones (Prince Tribute Band) - Bangor Art Exchange (Regular venue admission)

9:00 P.M. Story Slam - Fork & Spoon

9:00 P.M. I’m Your Diva Tonight! - Penobscot Theatre (Regular Theatre admission)

9:00 P.M. Stesha Cano – Happy Endings

9:00 P.M. DJ 2phat - BLAZE

9:00 P.M. Twograss - Paddy Murphy’s

9:30 P.M. Tough End String Band - Rock & Art Shop

9:30 P.M. The YumBus food truck - West Market Square

10:00 P.M. Dragon Keepers Fire Spinners – West Market Square

10:00 P.M. DJ Marissa – West Market Square Tent

10:30 P.M. Story Slam - West Market Square Artisan Coffee House

Midnight – Ball Drop – Paddy Murphy’s

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