During the warm months between June and October, Prescott Park hosts many outdoor events, by the docks in Portsmouth. The annual Prescott Park Arts Festival is popular among locals and features a professionally directed and managed performance, often the Broadway-style version of a Disney movie. Performed on a stage stationed at the park’s center, the yearly play is put on free of charge with an optional donation for admission. The festival is very kid-friendly. Times and dates for various events are available on Prescott Park’s website.
The Players’ Ring
Located along the gated edge of Prescott Park and across from the Strawberry Banke Museum parking lot is the historic little theatre called the Players’ Ring. Year-round they host a variety of original and oldie-but-goodie plays, including some day-time or early evening shows that are kid-friendly. However, the best shows fall under the late-night slots ––often frightening, subtly creepy or filled with intense drama. The late showings are not intended for children, but are enjoyable for adults. Discover show times and reserve tickets at the Players’ Ring’s website. Though general admission seating, is limited.
The Seacoast Repertory Theatre
At the Bow Street hill’s peak by Portsmouth’s waterfront, this well air-conditioned theatre holds mostly Broadway musicals and other well-known performances, which are,rofessionally directed. A few novelty, local shows are hosted here, such as “Dorks in Dungeons,” which performs once a month; and Let’s “B” Reel, which shows old movies on a projector screen. Kid-friendly shows are performed during the day, often starring attendees of the PAPA children’s theatre summer camp.
The Music Hall
Located in downtown Portsmouth, the Music Hall is a fancy and historic venue. It hosts mostly musical and dance performances during the summer, as well as some movie showings. The Loft, located elsewhere downtown, is a Music Hall affiliate dedicated to showing movies.
The Star Theatre
The Star Theatre in Kittery, Maine, is home of Patrick Dorrow Productions (PDP). Attached to the town hall/community center, the theatre holds many kid-friendly teen productions, as well as a few adult shows.
This playhouse in Berwick, Maine, is so charming it’s worth the drive. Inside of a renovated barn, the Hackmatack Playhouse invites visitors with its rural atmosphere. A concession stand offers homemade snacks, like slices of pie. The seating is usually limited general admission
Rochester Opera House
This quaint, historic building hosts many community events, the majority of which involve theater. Summer camps for children are held here as well as family-friendly shows, adult shows, dance company recitals, live musical performances and comedians. Depending on the event, the seating is assigned or general admission, and there is plenty of it, as balcony seating is above the main floor.
There are plenty of other theatre locales in the surrounding areas, such as the Ogunquit Playhouse and the Leddy Center for the Performing Arts, both of which tend toward professionalism. there is absolutely something for everyone, as long as you look in all the right places!