Folk festival plays on despite rain, cold temperatures

By Emily Burnham, BDN Staff
Posted Aug. 29, 2009, at 5:48 p.m.

click here for the revised schedule

BANGOR, Maine – The remnants of Tropical Depression Danny pelted Maine Saturday and forced a flood watch until noon Sunday for coastal counties, but the American Folk Festival went on Saturday afternoon and evening.

Rain and increasing winds forced changes to the folk festival schedule. Bangor had received about three-quarters of an inch of rain by 4:30 p.m., the National Weather Service office in Caribou reported.

The two main stage areas that are tented during the festival, the Penobscot Stage and the Dance Pavilion, were in use Saturday as organizers attempted to keep musicians and festival-goers dry.

Folk festival executive director Heather McCarthy said there were some muddy spots on the festival grounds but Bangor’s public works department and festival volunteers were “working like yeomen” to make it easy for people to get around the site on the waterfront.

“There are some spots where it’s kind of soggy, but we’re doing our best to do whatever we can so people aren’t slipping in the mud or tracking it on to the dance floor,” she said.

Music is expected to go on until 10:30 p.m. Saturday. Irish group Cherish the Ladies will wrap up the evening at the Penobscot Stage, while Jamaican reggae musician Clinton Fearon will close the night at the Dance Pavilion.

Festival-goers attended despite the rain and unseasonal temperatures in the mid-50s.

“The stages that are going are full,” McCarthy said. “There are a lot of people enjoying what’s going on there.”

To see the rest of Saturday’s schedule, go to www.americanfolkfestival.com.

Winds overnight in the Bangor area are expected to be about 12 mph with gusts up to 18 mph, the National Weather Service said.

The festival will proceed Sunday as scheduled with a noon start.

The weather service issued late Saturday morning a flood watch for northern, central and coastal Washington County and coastal Hancock County, along with areas of southeastern Maine.

Rainfall totals of 2-4 inches are expected over the watch area, with up to 5 inches possible along higher coastal terrain. Higher winds are expected along the coast, with winds around 25 mph and gusts into the 30s.

There were no surf warnings issued as of late Saturday afternoon.

The watch is in effect from through noon Sunday, with the heaviest precipitation coming Saturday evening when up to 1 inch per hour is expected. The weather service warned small stream flooding, road flooding and closures are possible.

The weather outlook is expected to improve Sunday as Danny’s remnants move past Maine. The forecast for the Bangor area is partly cloudy skies with a high of 72 degrees and a 20 percent chance of precipitation.

http://bangordailynews.com/2009/08/29/news/bangor/folk-festival-plays-on-despite-rain-cold-temperatures/ printed on August 23, 2014