Bangor prepares for Phish on the water

10:03 PM, Jul 1, 2013   |    comments
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BANGOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER)-- They began in the 80's and have a following that spans generations. Phish continues to play sold out shows and in a few days they will be kicking off their summer tour at the Bangor waterfront. It is expected to be one of the biggest shows of the year and with attendees come those that just want to hang out without a ticket. Bangor police are preparing for thousands of fans to pour into the Queen City and with that making sure everyone stays safe.

Sgt. Paul Edwards with the Bangor Police Department said, "What we have learned is that if there are 16,000 tickets sold to this venue, which that appears to what the number will be. You can get as many as one, two, or three times that many outside the venue."

Phish fans began arriving in advance to Wednesday's show. Many come from all over to see their favorite band live.

Eamon Cummins who will be attending the concert said, "The music is the biggest part of it but it's also the crowd. It's usually the people. You kind of get the extremes of people. You get the nicest people in the world and you get like the weirdest people in the world. But for the most part it's great people and amazing music, you can't go wrong."

Cummins, like many other fans, will be following the band on their summer tour.

"From here we are going down to Saratoga Springs in New York for the next three shows and they are up in Toronto. Then it's back to our home state of New Jersey and we are just going to keep going," explained Cummins.

This cult-like following, however, has left these fans with a rowdy reputation but organizers said it is a thing of the past.

Alex Gray with the Waterfront Concerts said, "From the days where their fans were much younger and a bit more likely to participate in some tomfoolery they have a very comprehensive security team."

Bangor police and organizers are prepared for the large crowds. The real issue is where to put all of the people.

Gray said, "The biggest thing from our standpoint is traffic because honestly you're talking about an enormous amount of people."

Bangor police did pass out flyers warning residents about the influx of people. This could mean traffic, less parking available, an increase in noise complaints, or possibly more drinking in public.

According to Sgt. Edwards the police are prepared, "We will do what we can to accommodate everyone to feel and be safe."

Attendees driving to the concert should be aware Bass Park will be closed. The city is encouraging the use of the parking garage in Pickering Square. The overflow will use street parking, but those parked downtown must be moved by 7:00 Thursday morning for the annual 4th of July parade.

Wednesday's concert kicks off at 7:30, the gates open at 5:00.  


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