Maxine Wampler

Written by Maxine Wampler

Modified & Updated: 08 Oct 2023

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


The Old Port Festival is a highly anticipated event that takes place annually in the historic port district of Portland, Maine. This vibrant festival attracts both locals and visitors from near and far, eager to immerse themselves in the rich culture and lively atmosphere that the Old Port has to offer.

With its charming cobblestone streets, picturesque waterfront views, and an array of exciting activities and entertainment, the Old Port Festival has become a highlight of the summer season in Maine. From live music performances to delicious food vendors, artisanal craft displays to interactive games and rides, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

In this article, we will uncover 12 fascinating facts about the Old Port Festival that make it a must-attend event for anyone seeking a memorable experience filled with fun, arts, and entertainment.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Old Port Festival has been a beloved tradition for over 40 years, featuring local vendors, live music, delicious food, and fun activities for the whole family. It’s a vibrant celebration of Portland’s maritime heritage and community spirit.
  • The festival promotes sustainability and supports local charities while celebrating the city’s rich maritime history. With a diverse range of entertainment options, it’s a must-visit event for residents and visitors alike.
Table of Contents

The Old Port Festival has been running for over 40 years.

Since its inception in 1973, the Old Port Festival has become a beloved tradition that attracts locals and visitors alike. It serves as a highlight of the summer season, drawing crowds of all ages.

It showcases local vendors and artisans.

One of the main attractions of the Old Port Festival is the array of local vendors and artisans who participate in the event. From handmade crafts to delectable treats, you can find a wide range of products that highlight the talent and creativity of the local community.

The festival features a variety of musical performances.

If you’re a music lover, the Old Port Festival won’t disappoint. Throughout the day, you can enjoy live performances by local bands and musicians across different stages. From rock and folk to jazz and blues, there’s something for everyone’s musical taste.

It offers a diverse selection of food and drinks.

The Old Port Festival is a paradise for foodies. Food trucks, restaurants, and vendors line the streets, offering a wide variety of delicious cuisines. Whether you’re craving seafood, barbecue, international flavors, or sweet treats, you’re sure to find something to satisfy your taste buds.

There are fun activities for the whole family.

The festival is a family-friendly event, with activities designed to entertain both children and adults. From face painting and carnival games to street performers and art workshops, there’s never a dull moment at the Old Port Festival.

It includes a colorful parade.

A highlight of the Old Port Festival is the vibrant parade that winds its way through the streets of Portland. Colorful floats, marching bands, and lively performers create a festive atmosphere that brings the community together.

Local businesses extend their hours.

During the Old Port Festival, many local businesses in the area extend their operating hours, giving festival-goers the opportunity to explore and shop. It’s a great chance to discover unique boutiques, art galleries, and specialty stores.

The festival promotes sustainability.

The Old Port Festival puts an emphasis on environmental consciousness. Initiatives like recycling stations, reusable dishware, and sustainable practices are implemented to minimize the festival’s impact on the environment.

It attracts a large number of attendees.

The Old Port Festival is known for its impressive turnout. Every year, thousands of people flock to the event to soak up the lively atmosphere and experience the best of what the Old Port district has to offer.

There are entertainment options for every taste.

Whether you’re into comedy shows, dance performances, or interactive exhibits, the Old Port Festival has a diverse range of entertainment options to cater to all interests.

The festival supports local charities.

The Old Port Festival plays a vital role in supporting local causes and organizations. Through partnerships and donations, the festival contributes to the betterment of the community by giving back to those in need.

It celebrates the maritime history of Portland.

As a coastal city with a rich maritime heritage, the Old Port Festival pays homage to Portland’s historical significance. It serves as a reminder of the city’s roots and the importance of its connection to the sea.

The Old Port Festival is more than just an event; it’s a celebration of community, culture, and the vibrant spirit of Portland. Whether you’re a long-time resident or a first-time visitor, this festival offers an unforgettable experience that showcases the best of what the Old Port district has to offer. Don’t miss out on the excitement of the Old Port Festival!


The Old Port Festival is a beloved event that brings together locals and visitors alike to celebrate the rich history and vibrant culture of the Old Port neighborhood. From live music and delicious food to exciting activities and unique vendors, this festival offers something for everyone. Whether you’re interested in exploring local art, indulging in tasty treats, or simply enjoying the lively atmosphere, the Old Port Festival is a must-attend event. So mark your calendars and get ready to experience the magic of this annual festival that captures the true spirit of Portland’s waterfront.


Q: When is the Old Port Festival?

A: The Old Port Festival typically takes place in June. However, it is always a good idea to check the official website or local event listings for the most up-to-date information on dates and times.

Q: Where is the Old Port Festival held?

A: The festival is held in the Old Port neighborhood of Portland, Maine. The exact location may vary from year to year, but it generally takes place along the waterfront and throughout the streets of the historic district.

Q: Is there an admission fee for the Old Port Festival?

A: No, the Old Port Festival is a free event. However, keep in mind that some activities, vendors, and food stalls may have their own charges.

Q: What can I expect to find at the Old Port Festival?

A: At the festival, you can expect to find a wide range of activities and attractions, including live music performances, food trucks and vendors, local artists and artisans, carnival rides, games, and much more.

Q: Is the Old Port Festival suitable for children?

A: Yes, the Old Port Festival offers family-friendly entertainment and activities. There are often dedicated areas for kids, such as face painting, balloon art, and interactive games.

Q: Can I bring my pet to the Old Port Festival?

A: While the festival is generally pet-friendly, it’s important to check the specific rules and regulations before bringing your furry friend. It’s recommended to keep pets on a leash and ensure they are comfortable in crowds and loud environments.

Q: Are there parking facilities available?

A: There are several parking options available in and around the Old Port neighborhood. However, due to the popularity of the festival, it’s advisable to arrive early or consider using public transportation or rideshare services to avoid any parking hassle.

Q: Can I purchase food and beverages at the festival?

A: Absolutely! The Old Port Festival features a wide array of food trucks and vendors serving up delicious eats and refreshing beverages. Explore the local culinary offerings and indulge in some tasty treats.

Q: Is there a rain date for the Old Port Festival?

A: In case of inclement weather, the festival may be rescheduled or certain activities may be canceled. It’s always a good idea to stay updated through official sources and social media channels for any weather-related updates.

Q: Are there any restrictions on what I can bring to the Old Port Festival?

A: While each festival has its own rules, it’s generally recommended to leave large bags, coolers, and alcohol at home. Additionally, it’s important to respect the rules and guidelines set by the organizers to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all attendees.

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