Photo Courtesy of Acadia Chamber


Summer festivals are a fun part of living on and visiting Mount Desert Island. Check out our previous post about festivals happening regularly in Bar Harbor. 

This post is about festivals that happen in Southwest Harbor, which some people nickname the ‘backside’ or ‘quiet side’. (Next week’s blog post, and the final in this series, will be about island-wide and other festivals happening outside Bar Harbor and Southwest Harbor.)

MDI Marathon Finish Line Festival

Happening: In October after the MDI Marathon ends (usually on a Sunday afternoon)
Celebrate the marathoners with everything from live music, good food, a beer garden, and even massages! Don’t miss out on this truly great event that flocks of people literally run to! This event is free and open to the public, so you can enjoy these great festivities without running the marathon or paying even one dollar!  Why wouldn’t you go? For more info and details, visit the official website:

The Flamingo Festival

Happening: Every July
This unique and fun festival is by far the pinkest festival on MDI–and possibly the world. This wonderful festival is so energizing that it inspired MDI-native Mike Perlman to create the magical play The Summoning of the Flamingo of Love. Go to this festival and have a lot of fun–and possibly be inspired to write a play while you are at it. For more info about the festival, visit: For more info on the Flamingo of Love, visit:

Acadia’s Oktoberfest Beer, Food, Music & Crafts Festival

Happening: Every early October (around the same time as Oktoberfest in Germany)
Preceded by a Wine Tasting the night before, Acadia’s Oktoberfest is a great time to enjoy good food and adult beverages. For those unable to hop on a plane and spend a couple thousand dollars on a trip to Munich, Acadia’s Oktoberfest is a nice and fun alternative to the one held in Germany. Don’t miss the fun! For more info, visit the official website:

The Common Good Soup Kitchen Summer Programs

Happening: June to October every year
From popovers to ukeleles to other fabulous musicians, The Common Good Soup Kitchen is a true community staple and its summer programs are a staple of this fine organization. Music, food, and friends in a beautiful setting is always a great way to feed your stomach–and your soul! For more info and updates, visit Common Good’s website:

Arthur Russell Festival for Creative Music Making

Happening: early July every year
A well-respected festival that features musicians of international acclaim, this is a great opportunity to learn from masters in the field while staying close to home here in Maine. For more info, visit:

Pumpkin Festival

Happening: every year before Halloween
The Southwest Harbor Public Library likes to promote the Halloween spirit through a Halloween show, family-friendly scary stories, and pumpkin carving. It’s a great way to get in the Halloween spirit without eating tons of candy! For more info, visit the Southwest Harbor Public Library’s website:

Which festivals are your favorites? Did we forget any? Please comment below!

More: Island Wide Festivals
More: Bar Harbor Festivals

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