A turducken of culture, sports and festivities in Portland this weekend 


The Victoria Mansion in holiday splendor. Photo By Kathleen Pierce

TGIF from the BDN Portland office on Congress Street, where we are still digesting turkey and pie and are looking forward to venturing forth into a weekend of festivities.

What we’re talking about

Tonight the holiday tree comes to life in Monument Square, Maine State Ballet’s “The Nutcracker” steps off at the Merrill Auditorium and people are shopping local all weekend. Let’s dig into the festivities. 

On Saturday and Sunday, the Magical Mystery Tour pulls into the State Theatre for the 14th annual Beatles Night. Local musicians, led by Spencer Albee, do their best to respect the Fab Four in this rocking tribute to the lads from Liverpool. What to expect? Troy Bennett’s video from last year will have you tapping along. Tickets are still available for Sunday’s 4 p.m. show. Saturday is long gone. “Yeah, Yeah, Yeah.”

In frosty news, The Polar Express hits the tracks from Ocean Gateway to the North Pole, and the puck drops at the Cross Insurance Arena at 7 p.m. Saturday when the University of Maine Black Bears take on Brown University in the second of three scheduled hockey games in Portland this season. Hockey fans, famished for ice action since the Portland Pirates left town, are delighted. Catch the fever with this video by Troy Bennett.

Want more?

The Victoria Mansion opens its heavy, ornate doors on Danforth Street today for the annual Christmas designers showcase. If you need inspiration to deck those halls, this is it. Each room has been transformed by local florists and interior designers in keeping with the era.

Kathleen Pierce visited last year and was wowed by “250 yards of ribbon, hundreds of shiny ornaments, more than 2,000 white lights and dozens of silk floral stems” in the show-stopping entrance. Story here:

— http://bangordailynews.com/2015/12/02/living/step-back-in-time-to-victorian-christmas-at-portland-mansion/

The Victoria Mansion, 109 Danforth St., is open until Jan. 8. Tickets are $15.

Sounds like a yuletide classic is on tap. Check out the city’s event calendar — which, like most of us, is as full as a turducken — for times and deets.

Open mic night turns political. A rally is planned Saturday night in Monument Square called “Youth Against LePage Rally for Unity,” from 6 to 7:30 p.m. According to the organizers’ Facebook page: “Given the many years under the LePage governorship and his recent disturbing comments about the refugee resettlement program, it is time for the youth to be given a platform to speak.”

This event is targeted at the youth who may not have voted for the governor, but all are welcome to join.

In other news

A  22 year-old Topsham man died in a crash Thanksgiving morning.  — WGME reports that Nicholas Oram was not wearing a seat belt when his car went off Foreside Road in Topsham and struck several trees. “Life is short,” a family friend said at the touching memorial site.

Planning a pot brownie business?  Don’t look at Oakland, Maine

—  The Associated Press reports that the town is considering “going dry” to block pot sales. That’s a much harsher step from Portland’s move to delay the opening of cannabis shops for six months with a moratorium. What’s a potrepreneur to do? Think green and stay chill.

See you Monday!

Got any interesting story ideas, suggestions or links to share? Email Dan MacLeod at dmacleod@bangordailynews.com, or tweet @dsmacleod.

As always, like BDN Portland on Facebook for more local coverage.

Kathleen Pierce

About Kathleen Pierce

A lifelong journalist with a deep curiosity for what's next. Interested in food, culture, trends and the thrill of a good scoop. BDN features reporter based in Portland since 2013.