Liberty Festival to celebrate Fourth with a bang

For the 13th year, the Liberty Festival is inviting thousands to join the celebration of the Fourth of July along the Androscoggin River in Lewiston and Auburn.
Local band Dirty McCurdy will appear on the Lewiston Veterans Park main stage. The band is finding itself heading in musical directions it may not have imaged a decade ago.  Founding member bassist Scott McCurdy recalled the days of extended blues jams and classic — rock standards, which are now but only a memory. “Motown, funk, pop, you name it. We want to bring a set list that enthuses ourselves, but always enthuses our audience first and foremost,” said Mike Atkinson, saxophone virtuoso.
The band’s newest member, Rich Chaisson, plays blues-rock to razor sharp disciplines of guitar in the styles of Carlos Santana and Edward Van Halen; and vocalist Ian Barclay contributes much to the band via a broad library of influences embellished with his multi-instrumental talents.
Elite-level stunting, cheering, dancing and tumbling will be performed by the Fortier Family Cheer Center, home of the nationally and internationally ranked Planet Cheer All-Stars. The Planet Cheer cheerleaders were the first all-star cheering team in the state to compete at The Cheerleading Worlds in Orlando, Fla.,  this past April.
Planet Cheer coach Amanda Scripture was a member and team captain of the first Team USA cheer team,  where she earned a gold medal at the Cheerleading World Cup. She and other Planet Cheer athletes of all ages will perform a choreographed routine.
Community Little Theatre has become a regular at the festival and will present, under the direction of Adam Blais, tidbits of famous Broadway musicals and a peek at the 70th season lineup for CLT.
To top off the night, entertainer Nick Knowlton has brought together LA Boppers Cast & Company to sing music from the ’60s and ’70s and to call in the fireworks display at 9:30 p.m.. 
In Auburn, the festival has partnered with Gritty’s Brew Pub and Hilton Garden Inn to provide more local talent. The Hilton Garden Inn will host the 5th annual Hilton party featuring the acoustic trio Vegetables by Day, performing classic and modern rock. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 and include light hors’doeuvres from 7 to 8 p.m., cash bar and music from 7 to 9:15 p.m. and front row seats on the Hilton terrace to view the fireworks.  Call 514-2204 or send an e-mail to make a reservation at [email protected]  All ticket proceeds will support the festival and its expenses.
Gritty’s will open up the back lawn at its establishment to offer music, food and drink. 
There will be a rock wall and bungee jump, hosted by the Maine Rock Gym, and childrens activities run by the Lewiston High School swim team.
Vendors, located on both sides of the river, will offer food and fun items.
For the third year, the festival will  hold an online contest to light the fireworks. Entrants must be at least 18 years old.  The winner will receive a one-night stay at the Hilton Garden Inn on this July 4, and be in the spotlight to countdown and signal the start of the fireworks display. 
The sponsorship fundraising campaign is still under way. Details are available at visit www.libertyfestival.org/sponsorus.
To get festival updates or enter the Light the Fireworks contest, go to www.libertyfestival.org.
 


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