Chicken barbecue returns with Bath Heritage Days

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BATH — After an absence of several years, the chicken barbecue returns June 30 to help kick off the city’s annual Heritage Days celebration.

“It really was quite a revered event,” City Councilor Greg Page, who is coordinating the activity, said Monday. He noted that with the combination of residents, food and music, “it was a true community-spirited event.”

Sunrise Rotary organized the event for more than 20 years, but Page said “it got to be such a large event, and the numbers at the Sunrise Rotary got to be so small, that they couldn’t undertake it anymore.”

Volunteers from the Morse All-Sports Boosters Club and the Main Street Bath organization are partnering to bring back the dinner, which takes place Friday from 5-7 p.m. at Library Park. Funds will go toward each organization’s mission, and tickets are available at downtown businesses in advance at $15 for adults and $10 for children. Tickets will be $20 the day of the event.

Heritage Days runs from Friday through Tuesday, July 4; a full schedule of events can be found at bathheritagedays.com.

Also on Friday, the Friends of Patten Free Library will hold a preview book sale for members only at the Winter Street Church from 5-8 p.m. Smokey’s Greatest Show & Carnival opens at Waterfront Park from 5-11 p.m., and the Independence Jam Skateboard Competition takes place at the Bath Skatepark, 4 Old Brunswick Road, at 6 p.m.

The Friends of Patten book sale runs at the Winter Street Church Saturday through Monday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., and Tuesday from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Smokey’s is open from noon-11 p.m. Saturday and Tuesday, noon-10 p.m. Sunday, and 1-10 p.m. Monday. Live entertainment is offered at Library and Waterfront parks noon-11 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m.-11 p.m. the next three days.

A fireman’s muster, sponsored by Now You’re Cooking, takes place at the north end of Front Street from noon-3 p.m. Saturday. Also that day will be a farmers market at the Bath Iron Works north end parking lot from 8:30 a.m.-noon, as well as the Maine Artisans’ Marketplace, which is held at Library Park from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and then 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday.

On Sunday, the Front Street Shuffle Antique Car Show runs from 9 a.m.-2 p.m., and the Chili-Chowder Fest will be set up at 26 Summer St. from 3-5:30 p.m.

Kids Day, with crafts and other activities, will be celebrated at Library Park from noon to about 3 p.m. Monday, and Smokey’s that day offers a $1-per-ticket special, with all rides costing one or two tickets.

Tuesday kicks off with a 1-mile fun run at 7:30 a.m. and a 5-mile road race at 8:15 a.m., both at City Hall. The Independence Day Parade starts at 10 a.m., following a 9 a.m. pre-parade show. A Maine’s First Ship fireworks party takes place at the Commercial Street Freight Shed from 7-10 p.m., and the Bath Municipal Band will hold a pre-fireworks show at Library Park at 8 p.m.

Fireworks blasts off over the Kennebec River at 9 p.m., bringing Heritage Days to a dynamic ending.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.