To our readers,

The COVID-19 pandemic is a once-in-a-century type story, ... Click here to continue

Belfast celebrates 23rd New Year’s by the Bay

By Kendra Caruso | Jan 06, 2020
Photo by: Kendra Caruso People gather at the intersection of High and Main streets on New Year's Eve to parade down to the waterfront for the bonfire lighting at midnight.

Belfast — A crowd of more than 100 people marched to beating drums through downtown Belfast to the Harbor Landing just before 11:40 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. A number of venues offered food and music during the city's 23rd annual New Year’s by the Bay celebration, leading up to a midnight bonfire by the water.

People walked the streets between venues offering live music, poetry, food, yoga and a candlelight labyrinth at Belfast Common. The Unitarian Universalist Church of Belfast, the First Baptist Church, the First Church in Belfast UCC, the Bazz, the Co-op, the Boathouse and the Belfast Free Library all hosted live music and dancing events.

In true Belfast fashion, many people brought their dogs. At least one dog could be seen wandering outside the large crowd of people walking down to the waterfront, unleashed and unattended, right before the bonfire lighting.

At times, it appeared to be looking for someone in the large crowd of people. The same unleashed dog ran away when a few fireworks were set off later that night, but it was quickly found.

City Council recently enacted an ordinance that requires dogs to be leashed on city property.

Police officers stationed at the intersection of Main and Front streets that night would not say whether they intended to issue tickets for unleashed dogs at the event. Deputy Chief Gerald Lincoln was not immediately available for comment on whether any such tickets were issued during the celebration.

Downtown bars and restaurants were crowded with people escaping the cold while waiting to parade down to the waterfront.

Wally Ham and his wife dined at Delvino’s Grill and Pasta House and listened to live music at some of the venues before the bonfire lighting. Ham thought the crowd was a little quieter than last year but said the gathering was just as big.

“It was more subdued,” he said. “It was more boisterous last year, but this is still a good turnout.”

Karen Smith, Nathaniel Baer and Flora Baer are a Belfast family who came out to ring in the New Year at the bonfire. Nathaniel said he was happy to celebrate New Year’s with his community on a night that had much better weather than last New Year’s Eve.

“It’s a great way to celebrate the New Year,” he said. “Maybe the best way.”

Residents watch the bonfire being lit at midnight on New Year's Eve at Belfast's public landing. (Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
People learn how to contra dance at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Belfast during New Year's by the Bay. (Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
Residents start to beat drums at Main and High streets in preparation for walking down to the waterfront  for the bonfire lighting at midnight during New Year's Eve by the Bay. (Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
Bluegrass group Katahdin Valley Boys plays at the First Church in Belfast UCC during the New Year's by the Bay to a crowd of event attendees. (Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
Halycon String Quartet plays to a crowd at the First Baptist Church in Belfast during the New Year's by the Bay event. (Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
A little girl waits for a dance partner to learn how to contra dance at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Belfast during New Year's by the Bay. (Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
(Photo by: Kendra Caruso)
If you appreciated reading this news story and want to support local journalism, consider subscribing today.
Call (207) 594-4401 or join online at waldo.villagesoup.com/join.
Donate directly to keeping quality journalism alive at waldo.villagesoup.com/donate.
Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.