Gardiner Artwalk takes place three times each year on the first Friday of May, August, and December and features unique works of art ranging from paintings, drawings, fine art prints and photography to textiles, sculpture, jewelry and ceramics.

First launched in 2005 by Artdogs studios and a handful of other area artists, the mission of ArtWalk Gardiner is to increase community awareness and appreciation of the visual arts, to encourage interaction with local artists and the public, and to nurture a supportive network that also enhances the local economy. Experience Gardiner through the imaginative lens of local artists and artisans on Friday, May 4 from 5:30-8:30 p.m. For questions, email [email protected].

Summer events starts to kick into high gear mid-May as the popular Classic Car Cruise-In reopens for the weekly show on Thursday evenings 5-7 p.m. at the Waterfront Park. Check out the cool collection of rare cars without heated seats, cd players, and automatic windows. Talk with owners as they show with pride a Ford Mustang or Thunderbird.

Speaking of classic cars, have you heard of The Great Race?

Gardiner will host a stop on the 2018 Great Race.

The Great Race, the world’s premiere classic car rally, will bring more than 100 antique automobiles to Historic Downtown Gardiner and the Waterfront Park. Gardiner Main Street and The Kennebec Valley Chamber of Commerce are proud to help Gardiner play host city for the race participants and event-goers.

The Great Race is coming to Gardiner on June 26.

The race annually draws more than 500 participants who make up the 120 teams – driver, navigator, support team and truck. Food trucks will be on hand to feed the 3000-plus expected crowd, live music and fireworks round out the event. To accommodate the crowds, shuttle buses will be available to transport people from Gardiner High School, which will be open for public parking that day, to downtown Gardiner.

This year’s route will take drivers on a course that starts in Buffalo and continues across upstate New York and through Vermont to Burlington. The course then continues east to Mount Washington and across Maine to Gardiner, Augusta, Bangor and Bar Harbor.

The final legs of the trip will take drivers across the Canadian border into Saint John and Moncton, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Truro and Dartmouth before the rally concludes in Halifax.

The national vintage-car road race, which will run on Tuesday, June 26, coincides with the region’s Whatever Family Festival.

The annual Greater Gardiner River Festival takes place on Saturday, June 23. Activities run as early as 8 a.m. to as late as 10 p.m. Again this year, there will be several ways to get out on the river – from boat rides to kayak and paddleboard demonstrations.

Historic Water Street in Gardiner will be transformed into a pedestrian mall with artists, crafters, and specialty vendors exhibiting their products from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Throughout the day, there will be entertainment and childrens’ activities at Gardiner’s Waterfront Park.

Festival organizers have continued to find ways to celebrate life on the Kennebec River – both on land and water. Most activities are free to the public, thanks to the area’s generous sponsors. The evening concludes with fireworks.

Gardiner Events Calendar

May 4: Gardiner Artwalk, 5:30 -8:30 p.m. Downtown Gardiner

June 22: FREE Waterfront Summer Concert Series by Johnson Hall, kickoff event, fireworks, 7-8:30 p.m.
June 23: Greater Gardiner River Festival, 9 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Downtown Gardiner & Waterfront Park
June 26: The Great Race, 2-9 p.m., Downtown Gardiner & Waterfront Park

Ongoing:
Monday: Yin Yang Yoga, Zardus Spa, 5:30-6:30 p.m., 1 Lincoln Ave.
Tuesday: Balance, Strength, & Stability, Zardus Spa, 8:30-9:30 a.m., 1 Lincoln Ave.
Tuesdays: Story Hour, Gardiner Public Library, 10 a.m., 152 Water St.
Tuesday: Trivia Tuesdays, Two Gramps Brewing, 7 p.m., 266 Water St
Tuesday: Open Mic Night, Niche Inc., 5-8 p.m., 307 Water St. Wednesday: Bingo Night, Gardiner Lions Club, doors open at 4 p.m., 25 Lions Avenue
Wednesdays: Tibetan Buddhist Meditation, Zardus Spa, 5:30-6:45p.m., 1 Lincoln Ave.
Facetime Social Networking Nights: first Wednesday of every month hosted by different Gardiner businesses, 5-7 p.m.

For more info regarding Gardiner events, contact Gardiner Main Street at 207-582-3100 or email [email protected]