DownEast Country Dance Festival

2018 • 28th Annual Festival

Mount Ararat Middle School, Topsham, Maine
Friday, Mar 23–Saturday, Mar 24
Survivor’s Dance Sunday, Mar 25

2018 Headliners:
Notorious with caller Adina Gordon • Velocipede with caller John McIntire • Frigate with caller Dugan Murphy

The DownEast Country Dance Festival (DECDF) is an annual celebration of traditional dance and music in Maine. At the festival you can:

• Dance! contra, folk, swing, …
• Attend workshops and family activities! dancing, instrumental, singing, …
• Perform! jam sessions and festival orchestra
• Enjoy performances! in the auditorium, the bistro, and more


Tickets can be purchased in advance by mail-in or online forms, or at the door during the festival.

Advance Tickets

Advance Sale Mail-in Form Available Here

• Mail-in forms must be postmarked by Tuesday, March 13.

Advance Sale Online Form: Coming Soon

• Advance online sales will start here on February 24, 2018. Keep an eye out on this page and the DEFFA Facebook page for updates.
• Online sales will end at midnight on Tuesday, March 20.


Same-day tickets will be available at the festival door starting 30 minutes before opening.
3-Day, 2-Day and Saturday Full-Day discount passes are available only by advance purchase.
Volunteer to get free admission to the festival! See Volunteering below for details.
DEFFA Member Festival Coupon: Sign up to be a member by early February to receive a $5 discount coupon with the March Newsletter, which can be applied toward the cost of festival T-shirts or same-day tickets at the Festival or Survivors Dance. Note: The coupon cannot be used for advance tickets, performer sales or other vendor merchandise. Renewals or new memberships received after the March mailing is generated will receive the coupon for next year's festival.


Prices are shown for Adults (21+) / Youth (11-21).
Children 10 and under are admitted for free but must be accompanied by an adult and supervised at all times.
Note: Advance mail-in prices shown below; online prices are ~4% higher to cover processing costs.

Advanced Purchase
At the Door
Three Day Pass
7:30PM Fri-4:00PM Sun
$42 / $32
Two Day Pass - FS
7:30PM Fri-Midnight Sat
$34 / $24
Two Day Pass - SS
10:00AM Sat-4:00PM Sun
$34 / $24
Saturday Full Day Pass
$26 / $16
$30 / $20
Friday Night
$12 / $8
Saturday Daytime
$15 / $10
Saturday Night
$15 / $10
Sunday Survivors Spirited Sing
Sunday Survivors Dance
$10 ($8 with festival wristband)

Schedule & Venue Map

Friday–Saturday Main Festival | Topsham, Maine

The festival schedule will be posted in the coming months. Keep an eye out here and on the DEFFA Facebook page for updates.

View the festival map.

Sunday Survivor's Dance | Bowdoinham, Maine

Join us as we close the festival with a spirited sing and more contradancing.
11:30am-12:30pm: Spirited Sing
12:30pm-4pm: Contradance

Directions & Lodging

Orion Performing Arts Center at Mount Ararat Middle School

Friday and Saturday of the festival take place at the Orion Performing Arts Center in Topsham, Maine.

Note: This is a lovely venue with an actual sprung floor in the gym! Please help us continue our strong working relationship with Mount Ararat School by keeping the space clean and following all instructions about access (or non-access). Please bring soft-soled, non-street shoes to preserve the wonderful floor!

Bowdoinham Town Hall

The Sunday Survivors Dance takes place at Bowdoinham's charming town hall building, which sits adjacent to and shares a parking lot with Bowdoinham Town Office.


The Comfort Inn in Brunswick offers a discounted rate for festival attendees. Let them know that you're attending the DownEast Country Dance Festival to get your discount.

You can also connect with local dancers on the DEFFA Facebook page.

Performing or Vending

Performer Application

Apply online by October 31.

Note: There is no paper application this year. No tech sheet is required with the initial application.

Please make sure to read the letter to festival performers from the festival committee.

Performer Compensation

The festival has a profit-sharing system for daytime performers. Each year performers are offered a share of the festival profits in addition to a full festival pass. Each performer has the choice to either donate their talents or receive a single share of festival profits, regardless of how many times they perform.

Groups with more than five members will be eligible for only five shares total. Those who perform for less than a full 50-minute slot (for example, in the Variety Show) will be eligible for a festival pass only. The number of passes available for large groups will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Performer Lodging

Unfortunately the festival committee is not currently able to arrange lodging for performers. We strongly encourage you to connect with contacts in the Topsham area or reach out to the DEFFA community via its Facebook event page for this year's festival (coming soon).


Each year the festival offers the few spaces available for vendors. Priority is given to artisans who sell their own work. If you own or work at an business or organization and would like to consider vending at this year's festival, contact the vendor coordinator Maureen Costello (207-772-6690).


Volunteer Sign-Up

Volunteer Sign-up Form Available Here

• Sign-up forms must be submitted by Saturday, March 10.
• Volunteer assignments will be finalized and shared via email shortly before the March 20 deadline for online advance sale tickets.

DECDF Runs on Volunteers

Take part to help make the weekend a success! Each volunteer receives a Friday-Saturday festival pass (Sunday Survivors Dance not included) for fulfilling one of the following volunteer options:

• One sustained 3-hour session of service
• A combination of one 2-hour and one 1-hour session of service
• Two 1.5-hour sessions of service in the instrument check
• One 2- to 2.5-hour session of service cleaning up at the conclusion of the festival

We truly count on volunteers to make the festival a success. In case your schedule changes after signing up, please be in touch as soon as possible with May Hall, Volunteer Coordinator, at maywicca [at] gmail [dot] com or 207-332-2368.

Super Volunteers

The festival is fortunate to have a number of "Super Volunteers," individuals whose work goes above and beyond the festival weekend. We want to make sure to thank:

• Cindy Larock, major newspaper press releases
• Kim Roberts, children's area
• Laurie Sims, instrument check & festival map
• Sam Powers, stage storage & set-up
• Steve Plumb, ticket sales
• DownEast Country Dance Festival Committee


The DownEast Country Dance Festival Committee

All hard-working volunteers!

• Glen Loper - Chair
• Maureen Costello - Vice Chair
• Lynn Plumb
• Maggie Robinson
• May Hall
• Tyson Pease


Postal Mail

DownEast Country Dance Festival
455 East Pond Road
Nobleboro, Maine 04555


• Glen Loper (Chair): 207-837-8249
• May Hall (Volunteer Coordinator): 207-332-2368
• Maureen Costello (Vendor Coordinator): 207-772-6690