The first official weekend of fall brings all manner of music, theater, food, and festivities. Here are some highlights.
Kittery 375th Celebration
The town of Kittery is wrapping up its year-long 375th anniversary celebration with a weekend of festivities. On Friday from 4:30-6:30 p.m., the Kittery Community Center will host a free Birthday Bash with music, food, carnival games, a bike parade, and more. On Saturday from 1-4 p.m., the second annual Taste of Kittery event returns to Post Office Square, where local restaurants will serve sips and bites with music and fun ($35-$50). Learn more here.
Rock and swing at The Rockingham Ballroom
Experience what it was like when Elvis ruled the airwaves in Newmarket on Friday from 7-10 p.m., when J.C. & The Elvis Experience perform at The Rockingham Ballroom ($15-$25). Then, on Saturday from 6:30-11 p.m., the 18-piece New Legacy Swing Band presents an Autumn Leaves Swing Dance at the Ballroom ($22). Learn more here.
‘Sweeney Todd’ at the Seacoast Rep
It’s gonna be a bloody good time at the Seacoast Repertory Theatre in Portsmouth, with Stephen Sondheim’s “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street” on stage through Nov. 4. Show times are Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2 and 7:30 p.m. ($25-$54). Learn more here.
Punk rock on the Button Factory Stage
WSCA Portsmouth Community Radio presents two punk-rock shows on the Button Factory Stage. A triple-bill show on Friday from 8-11 p.m. features area bands Ratland, A Day Without Love, and Five Feet ($10). On Saturday from 7-11 p.m., WORLDSUCKS and Aulnes bring their tour to town with openers Witchtrot and TFR ($10). Learn more here.
Concerts at The Stone Church
The Stone Church kicks off a packed weekend in Newmarket with Grunge Tribute Night on Friday at 9 p.m., featuring Stone Temple Posers and Nick Warren playing unplugged Nirvana ($12). David Wax Museum plays an outdoor duo show on Saturday from 6-9 p.m. ($20), followed that night by jam bands The Chops and The Human Beings at 10 p.m. ($10). Jim & Jordan wrap it up with an Irish Night Matinee on Sunday from 4-6 p.m. ($20). Learn more here.
Fairy House Tour 2022
The annual Fairy House Tour returns this year, with fairy houses and fairy-inspired performances spread across the grounds of Prescott Park, Strawbery Banke Museum, and the Gov. John Langdon House in Portsmouth on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. ($5-$15). Proceeds support local schools and nonprofits. Learn more here.
Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival
Rollicking sea chanteys, poignant sailors’ ballads, and more will fill the streets of downtown Portsmouth during the annual Maritime Folk Festival this weekend. The feature concert is on Saturday from 7-9:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, with a grand finale chantey blast on Sunday at 5 p.m. in Market Square. Learn more here.
Truffle at Newburyport Brewing Co.
Seacoast funk/rock/soul heroes Truffle will play one more outdoor show at Newburyport Brewing Co. this year on Saturday evening from 6-9 p.m. They’ll bring the spirit of New Orleans to the stage while audience members enjoy delicious local craft brews, including the new Sandbar Double IPA. Tickets are $10. Learn more here.
Nervous But Excited at The Word Barn Meadow
Nervous But Excited is a folk duo featuring two singer-songwriters (Kate Peterson and Sarah Cleaver), three guitars, a mandolin, a banjo, a ukulele, and a few harmonicas, with healthy doses of harmony, laughter, and dancing thrown in. They’ll play outside at The Word Barn Meadow in Exeter on Saturday from 7-8:30 p.m. ($20). Learn more here.
Three shows at The Dance Hall
The Dance Hall is bringing a diversity of great shows to Kittery this weekend. Local Steely Dan tribute band Powermoneycake returns on Friday from 7:30-8:30 p.m. ($15). Local act The Maddoc Johnson Quintet mixes free jazz with beat poetry and other forms of musical expression on Saturday from 7:30-8:30 p.m. ($12). Composer and bassist Joe Fonda brings his world-class jazz trio to town on Sunday from 3-5 p.m. ($5-$20). Learn more here.
See the full calendar for more local events.