The Friends of Fort Knox announced that the Fort Knox State Historic Site will open two-days early, on Sunday, April 29 at 9 a.m. The Penobscot Narrows Observatory will open Sunday, May 6.

The Friends recently signed a three-year lease agreement with the Maine Department of Conservation’s Bureau of Parks and Lands assuming all management functions for the state historic site. Friend’s staff operates the Penobscot Narrows Observatory under a separate contract with the Maine Department of Transportation.

Friends’ executive director Leon Seymour said in a news release that the recent good weather has allowed operations staff to get a good jump start on opening procedures for the fort. The Maine Department of Transportation has been busy preparing the observatory for the upcoming season.

Fort Knox and the observatory will remain open daily through Oct. 31.

The Fort opens daily at 9 a.m. and remains open until sunset. The observatory remains open until 5 p.m., except July and August, when hours extend until 6 p.m.

The Friends have planned a busy season of special events for this season including Civil War Weekend, Tribute to Elton John, Medieval Tournament, Pirate Day, Psychic/Paranormal Faire and more. For a complete list of upcoming special events at Fort Knox and state set fees go to the Friends of Fort Knox website:

Another new development will be taking place at the attraction this year. Recent the Friends’ Board of Directors approved funding for additional weeks of the Penobscot Narrows Bridge. Historically, the Maine Department of Transportation has illuminated the bridge from July through Labor Day. The Friends funding will allow bridge illumination from June 21 and after Labor Day, through Halloween. The Friends Board made this decision to increase the potential positive impact for local businesses.