Belfast street party promises fun, food, safari rides

Posted July 31, 2012, at 7:16 p.m.

BELFAST, Maine — Life-sized animatronic safari animals to ride, live music to listen to and tons of good food to nosh on must mean that it’s just about time for the annual Belfast Street Party, according to local officials who describe Monday’s event as the “New England Mardi Gras.”

While there likely will not be beads thrown around or nonfamily-friendly activities, the party has drawn thousands of people to High Street in the past three years, according to Belfast City Councilor and inveterate local booster Mike Hurley.

“We have things that are are not just fun to do — they’re fun to watch people do,” he said Tuesday.

Along with the safari rides on the tiger and elephant, those include a climbing wall, a bucking bronco, bungee jumping, a bounce house and a rat race. There also will be a fortune teller, a caricature artist and a photo booth, said Bre Bebb, the new director of Our Town Belfast.

She said that a section of High Street will be closed to car traffic around 4 p.m. Monday and open again at 11 p.m., when the party is done.

A stage in front of the Colonial Theatre will host live music by The Breakers jazz band, Maine Country Music Hall of Fame inductee Don Nickerson and Country Mist, Joanne Parent and Sistalicious.

“Anything to bring the community together in the downtown area — that’s the sort of thing we’re interested in,” Bebb said. “It gives more reasons to come visit Belfast again and again.”

While the rides will cost money, other activities will be free, she said.

The Belfast Street Party will take place on High Street from 4-11 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 6. If there is rain, the event will take place the first following clear evening.

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