Special Events in Castine

Castine HarborSpring, Summer, Fall and Winter – no matter the season there are special events to entertain young and old alike in historic Castine, Maine.




Castine Historical Society Summer Exhibit –  Castine’s Devoted Women: Partnership and Social Reform 1910-1962

The Castine Historical Society’s 2017 Summer Exhibit Castine’s Devoted Women: Partnership and Social Reform 1910-1962 focuses on the lives of Mary W. (Molly) Dewson and Mary G. (Polly) Porter who were life-partners during an age of progressive change encompassing woman’s right to vote, labor and wage reform, and feminism.

Molly Dewson was one of the first women to have national political power and influence in Washington D.C.  She earned the respect and friendship of many high profile political figures including Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt during her work for social reform and women’s equality.

The story of the two women over their 50-year partnership is told through their words and those of their contemporaries taken from newspaper clippings, letters and memoirs.  The recent gift to the Society of 28 scrapbooks kept by Molly and Polly has provided a wealth of material for the exhibit.  Volunteers spent many hours searching through the pages of the scrapbooks to select the most appropriate images to highlight their story.  These images were then converted into historical panels, which have striking relevance to today’s social and political culture.

Exhibit opens Monday, June 12. Admission is free.
June 12 – Labor Day | Monday – Saturday 10 AM-4 PM | Sundays 1-4 PM
Labor Day – Columbus Day | Friday, Saturday, & Monday 10 AM-4PM | Sunday 1-4PM

Fourth of July Celebration 

The 4th of July officially kicks off the Castine summer season.  Visitors from around the world return to a place they have long cherished – “Castine Under The Elms and By The Sea.”

Family, friends and visitors alike join in the old fashion day style celebration of parades, flag waving, special foods, evening concerts and the best fireworks display over the bay anywhere!

This year, make your reservations early and stay in one of our cottages, homes for rent or one of our cozy B&B’s.  The Castine 4th of July Celebration will soon become a family tradition.

SAVE THE DATE……2018 Bastille Day Celebration – July 14

The idyllic and historic setting of Castine, Maine, with its pristine Penobscot Bay as a backdrop, is hosting their fourth annual Bastille Day Celebration on Saturday, July 14th.  This family celebration takes place on the French national holiday and encourages visitors from near and far to experience our Franco-American and Native American culture through music, food, lectures, harbor, and lighthouse tower tours. Castine traces its French heritage to the Baron de St. Castin.  His marriage to Wabanaki Chief Madockawando’s daughter linked our French and Native American cultures.

The celebration begins appropriately with a French toast breakfast at the Main Street Church.  You’ll learn the art of French cooking during our chef’s demonstration. Celebration goers will be encouraged to wear white to our late afternoon, 5PM, “Picnic en Blanc” where you’ll be seated at long white tables in front of Emerson Hall; under the elms, while listening to Franco-American music.  Select your designer picnic from our local restaurants or bring your own French delights.  A plethora of other activities allow you to take in the sites while enjoying a lighthouse tour or tasting hand-cranked ice cream while you take in a little history at the Wilson Museum.  Historic lectures are designed to satisfy even the most discerning history buffs.  Complete your celebration experience with a summer evening concert on our picturesque Town Common.

This event is hosted by the Town of Castine’s Bastille Day Celebration Committee.

Hisotric Sea Kayak Tours –  July 14th

Celebrate Bastille Day from the water by Kayak! Explore where the first French and Indian Trading post was back in the 1700’s. See the property where the Baron De Castin resided! See the location of the first French fort in Castine!

Experience what it felt like to be on the waters back in time, what the French came for and travel on the same waters they did so many years ago.

Every trip includes instruction geared toward each individual’s skills, for beginners and experienced kayakers alike. Our small group to guide ratio allows us to make every trip exciting and unique! Beginners welcome! Kayak, paddle, lifejacket and expert Maine sea kayak guides provided.

Two tours: 9:00 a.m. – Noon or 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. Registration required.

Baron’s Beach & Beacon 5K & 10K Road Race –  July 15th

Join us Saturday July 15, 2017 for the Annual Baron’s Beach & Beacon 5K & 10K run starting and ending at the Castine Town Dock.

$20 registration fee. Register here. Free t-shirt for first 100 runners. Proceeds benefit The Hatch Fund. Race day registration 8-8:45 AM. Race starts at 9 AM.

Plein Air Festival –  July  20-22

The Castine Arts Association is pleased to announce the 2017 festival will take place over three days, from July 20 to 22. The coastal town of Castine, Maine is the ideal setting for plein air painting.  The town and surrounding Penobscot Bay area is endowed with a rich history of art and has been a popular destination for many of America’s most famous artists for over 150 years.  The area possesses a stunning collection of beautiful landscapes, rugged coastlines, historic architecture, and an abundance of New England charm.

The festival will include artist awards and an opportunity to sell work created during the event to the public. There will be a welcome cocktail reception on the evening of July 19th. The festival will conclude on the evening of July 22nd with an exhibition and sale of the art created over three days of painting.  Artists may paint at a variety of locations of their choosing within a defined area surrounding the town of Castine.

July 20 | Artist Registration and Festival Launch | 6:00 – 8:30 AM
Artists check-in at the Castine Town Common to obtain their information packet and have their blank canvases stamped for the event.  Visitors will enjoy traveling around Castine and capturing the artists at work on Thursday and Friday.

July 22 | Reception Exhibition and Art Sale | Alfond Student Center, Maine Maritime Academy, Pleasant St. | 4:00 – 6:00 PM
Public exhibition and art sale – artists will host their display tables. All submitted artwork, up to a maximum of six paintings, must be available for sale at the exhibition and sale. 

Plan to visit Castine during this exciting opportunity to see artists in action, painting in  historic Castine where many famous artists have painted before and purchase your favorite work directly from your favorite artist.  Be sure to get your accommodation reservations early as the community will be fully booked during this event!

Castine Classic Yacht Race – August 2-3 

Celebrating Aage Nielsen

Please join us for the eighteenth annual Castine Classic Yacht Race to Camden on August 3, 2017 kicking off three days of spectacular racing on Penobscot Bay.

On August 2 we will honor Aage Nielsen, a genius of twentieth century yacht design, at an exhibition at the Town Dock and a symposium at Maine Maritime Academy, chaired by Doug Adkins. Maynard Bray and Tom Jackson, authors of “Worthy of the Sea,” the definitive Nielsen treatise, will help orchestrate the presentation. All Nielsen yacht owners wishing to participate are urged to contact  Committee@CastineClassic.com.

We look forward to seeing you in Castine this summer. Please contact David Bicks at (917) 331-5482 or committee@castineclassic.com if you have any questions.

Fort George Fortification – September 9-10

Fort George in Castine is on the National Register of Historic Places due to the important role it played in the American Revolution and later in the War of 1812.

On the weekend of September 9 & 10, 2017, volunteers at Fort George and Castine will show us what life may have been like between 1779 and 1783 while Crown troops protected the Loyalists who had moved to the area believing that the Penobscot was going to be the border between the new United States of America and British North America.

The weekend will be filled with music, food, history, presentations and entertainment for the whole family. For more information and a schedule of events visit the Friends of Castine Fortification website.