By Debra Bell
of the Weekly Staff
The Bangor Garden Show, a traditional rite of spring, returns with a new name and a new look this year. Scheduled to take place from 10 a.m.-8 p.m., April 5-6 and from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., April 7, the garden show will be held at the Bangor Auditorium and Civic Center. Admission is $5, children under 12 are admitted free.
Now known as the BDN Maine Bangor Garden Show and Spring Fling, the show will be presented by New England Home Health. Organizers promise there will be something for everyone.
“We’re expanding the show to both buildings and including elements of spring and summer,” said BDN Maine Events Producer Pat Lemieux. “Plus we’re bringing up the level of showbiz and entertainment. This will not be your average garden show.”
Lemieux said that this year’s show will focus on pulling people out of winter and getting them excited about spring and summer. The BDN Maine Events team decided to include music, golf, beer, and food, aspects not seen in past garden shows.
Maine musicians will abound. From 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 5, the high energy musical group Tricky Britches will perform on the Civic Center Stage. Tricky Britches is rooted in old-time country/bluegrass/jugband sounds. The group got its start on the streets of Portland.
On Saturday, three musical acts will keep the momentum of spring moving.
Travis Cyr, an acoustic singer-songwriter will open the music stage starting at 11:30 a.m. At 2:30 p.m., the Coloradas, an acoustic duo hailing from a mixture of folk, bluegrass, and rock styles, take the stage. Then, at 5:30 p.m. the Mallett Brothers Band, one of Maine’s better known alt-country and rock bands, takes the stage.
For golfers, the Bangor Garden Show and Spring Fling has excitement to offer. That’s because a putting green and golf simulator will be located on the landscaping floor of the Bangor Auditorium.
The show will feature a hole-in-one contest with a prize of $10,000 at stake each day. Golfers who want to get ready before hitting the greens can take advantage of one-on-one guidance from a golf pro. The golfing area is sponsored by Harris Golf and the Penobscot Valley Country Club.
And what’s spring and summer without barbecues and beer (or wine)? This year’s Garden Show and Spring Fling will answer that question with its beer and barbecue garden, a gated area where visitors can relax between activities. Beer will be provided from a variety of Maine vendors, and barbecue will be provided by Mainely Meats.
For the kids, there will be a special area full of activities by the Maine Discovery Museum, UMaine Cooperative extension, and others throughout the show.
The Garden Show and Spring Fling also will feature the traditional lineup of landscapers competing for top honors and vendors offering gardening and home-related items. There also will be lectures, including one by Barbara Damrosch, a horticulture professional, writer, and co-founder of Four Season Farm. She will speak from 11 a.m.-noon on Friday, April 5.
For a complete lineup and schedule go to bdnmainegardenshow.com/features/schedule or visit the BDN Maine Events Facebook page.
“We want to help people shake off winter with a chance to get out of the house,” Lemieux said.