Yes, we’ve all had our first bar, our favorite bar, a bar we would never return to, a bar you’ve done some major firsts in your life … and then there is YOUR gay bar. You know, the one that if you could one gay bar to go back to forever and that was the only one, you would choose that one.
Mainestreet in Ogunquit, Maine is such a bar. I’ve been going to Ogunquit and Mainestreet for the past 20 some odd years, really since it opened up. Living in Northern Maine, we all heard of this fabulous gay bar south of Portland and for most of us, Portland was the place to go to taste the gay nightlife. But then this cute, quaint, beach town had a great addition that needed to be checked out. We were hooked.
Over the years, Mainestreet had been the place to go after a hot day on one of the best sandy beaches in the nation, to celebrate the best Halloween parties a bar can throw, to stumble though the snow to ring in the new year with amazing friends, to make and meet friends from other states and nations, or just to sit on one of the decks and watch the world go by with beer, cocktail, or rum bucket in hand.
The bar has meant a lot to me. I’ve made some great life long friends from there and I actually lived above the bar one year while working in town. I’ve celebrated many holidays under that roof and even watched the 4th of July fireworks from the roof.
Like any successful growing business, the bar has been remodeled, been added on to, and is now one of the most prominent buildings on Route 1 in Ogunquit. Not only is it physically visible, it’s also a major part of the community as it has given back so much to the community with fund raisers, not just for AIDS Walk and LGBT focused topics, but efforts by the bar to support community events and charity work that assists the entire community are well known.
During my last visit to Maine, it was a necessity for me to stop in to Mainestreet and have a drink or several. On that Wednesdaynight, I took part in Family Feud, a fun little game show held on the front deck hosted by one of the drag performers. We were all spaced apart well and we had a great time. Of course, this year is a little different and not in a good way. Janet Mills, the governor of Maine, has done a great job in protecting the citizens of her state, but unfortunately, with all these restrictions, business have not done well, including Mainestreet. I have to give a big BRAVO for the efforts of the owners and staff of the bar, but there is only so much one can do with restrictions so tight.
Like many needing support, the bar has turned to a GoFundMe page to recoup some of the funds lost, to help pay staff, to cover all the changes made to keep pushing through the summer. It’s actually been quite successful, but there is still a ways to go. As of Saturday night, they are less than $5,000 away from their modest goal. But we know that there are more bills. Because of the shortfall of the summer, the bar will be closed this winter where it used to be open 3 or 4 days a week and was open for amazing Halloween and New Years Eve parties.
Mainestreet is and has been the heart of the LGBTQ + community in Ogunquit for 20 years. The bar has raised thousands of dollars for various charities, such as the hugely popular Broadway Gives back, Frannie Peabody Center, the very successful HARBOR TO THE BAY bike ride, and many more. Mainestreet also opened its doors every December to THE SPIRIT OF GIVING Committee which provides Christmas gifts for over 600 underprivileged kids. Mainestreet has always been there for our community, I am asking you to be a little generous and be there for Mainestreet. Thank you in advance from the bottom of my heart! Please take a couple of minutes to read below. – gofundme.com
If a GoFundMe paragraph or five are not going to make you donate, TONIGHT at 7 PM, there will be a benefit on Facebook Live for the bar. If you’re willing to be entertained, head over to Facebook tonight to see what Mainestreet will offer or see more info below.
Please join us for a live fundraiser for our family at Mainestreet. This has been a difficult season for the only gay owned and operated club in Ogunquit.Show will be broadcast on:
- Facebook Live
- twitch.tv/deejayagaSpecial performances by Sutton Lee Seymour, Levi Kreis, Joe Posa (as Joan Rivers), Jason Antone, Delighted Tobehere, Chi Chi Rones and JoAnna (the Dueling Drag Divas) also a few surprise guests.You can show your support and donate here:
- Venmo @mestogtMaineStreet is and has been the heart of the LGBTQ + community for 20 years. They have raised thousands of dollars for various charities, such as the hugely popular Broadway Gives back, Frannie Peabody Center and one of the biggest one being the HARBOR TO THE BAY bike ride, plus many more. MaineStreet also opens their doors every December to THE SPIRIT OF GIVING Committee that provides Christmas gifts for over 600 underprivileged kids. Mainestreet has always been there for our community, We are asking you to be a little generous and be there for Mainestreet.
I wish you all the best, Mainestreet. You have been a great part of my adult gay experiences for the past 20 years. Here’s hoping for another 20 more.