Though it’s scheduled to go down less than three weeks from today, Maine’s KahBang Music & Arts Festival announced late last week a sudden relocation from Bangor to Portland. The move 130 miles south across the Pine Tree State comes after hosting a wide-ranging music, art, and film festival in a public space on the Bangor waterfront. This year’s event is headlined by DMX and St. Vincent, and features Boston acts such as Miss Geo and Brite Lite Brite.
The Portland music venues taking part in the new KahBang configuration are the State Theatre (609 Congress St.), Port City Music Hall (504 Congress St.), and the Big Easy (55 Market St.). The KahBang film festival portion will happen at One Longfellow Square (181 Street), and the arts fest host venue will be Community Television Network (516 Congress St.).
The four-day event will largely follow the same schedule, just in the new locations. According to the State Theatre website, headliners DMX and St. Vincent will perform there on Friday, August 8.
KahBang made the announcement late last week, posting the following message to its Facebook event page and updating its flyers and promo material to reflect the move to Portland:
Today we are announcing that we will be moving the KAHBANG Festival from Bangor to Portland, Maine August 7th to 10th. We appreciate all the love and support that we have been given during the past 5 years and thank all of you that have helped us and been with us from the start.
Please know that we worked as hard as we could to keep the Festival in Bangor. As much as we love Bangor, our home, we have chosen to continue the event this year in an alternative location as opposed to entirely cancelling the festival.
We thank you for your understanding in this unexpected change and we greatly appreciate your continued support of our mission to bring music, art, and film to the great state of Maine.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any further questions in regards to this year’s event.
See you in August,
The KAHBANG Team
According to the Bangor Daily News, KahBang organizers said the relocation was essential to the festivals survival, and refunds are available to anyone who purchased a ticket but can’t travel to Portland.
KahBang creative director Joshua Gass told the Bangor Daily News: “This was not an easy decision for us to make, but at the end of the day, this was a business decision,” said Gass. “We had to make a change in order to preserve the festival.”
There was also a concern about lodging and people coming from out of town, mainly Southern New England and the New York area. More from the BDN:
By moving the festival to Portland this year, festival-goers will have access to camping at Wild Duck Campground and RV Park in Scarborough. Shuttles will run campers back and forth between Portland and the campsite all weekend.
“We rely on people to travel in from out of state… so when we were hearing from people who wanted to buy tickets, the biggest comment was, ‘We want to go, but we don’t know where to stay,’” said Gass. “By moving it to Portland, we can provide our festival-goers with an affordable place to stay, and we’re closer to where these people are coming from anyway.”