Fireworks explode over Great Falls and the Androscoggin River between Lewiston and Auburn as the Basilica of Saints Peter & Paul looms in the foreground during the 2021 Liberty Festival. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal file

LEWISTON — Fireworks and American Idol contestant Julia Gagnon of Cumberland will be among the highlights as the 27th annual Liberty Festival expands to three days in the Twin Cities this year to celebrate Independence Day along the banks of the Androscoggin River.

The festival, which will also include music, dancing, food vendors and a flag retirement ceremony, will begin on Thursday, July 4, at 5 p.m. in Lewiston at Veterans Park, and at 6 p.m. in Auburn at Great Falls Plaza.

“The lineup is largely finalized but there might be some last-minute surprises from local performers,” said Cathy MacDonald, the festival’s president and organizer.

The festival is taking place over three days this year.

To kick off the festivities, Bazinga and the L/A Harley Band will take the stage in Lewiston, as well as Elvis Presley tribute artist Robert Washington.

Across the river in Auburn, there will be a dance party and karaoke with DJ Scotty Dawg.


Fireworks are expected to begin at 9:30 p.m. the first night.

“We’re looking at a fireworks show for 30 to 35 minutes. We will have a fantastic finale (for Thursday night),” said MacDonald. In the case of inclement weather, fireworks will be moved to Friday evening.

On Friday, July 5, Maine’s American Idol contestant Julia Gagnon and the Country Roads Band will perform at Veterans Park in Lewiston.

According to MacDonald, this year’s vendors will have novelty items, children’s games and food for festival-goers.

“Fried dough, waffle cones, hamburgers, hot dogs, fries, pizza. All the good festival food,” MacDonald said.

The festival is set to wrap up on Saturday, July 6, with a flag retirement ceremony that will feature the 195th Maine Army National Guard Band. Attendees are welcome to bring any flags that may need to be retired.

“We ask that people bring lawn chairs or blankets or whatever they want to sit on to be comfortable and get a great spot for viewing,” MacDonald said. “Sparklers are not allowed. We asked (attendees) not to bring any sparklers. It’s too crowded,” she added.

For more information about this year’s Liberty Festival, visit

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