Would it be ready in time for this weekend's concert? 

That was the question I heard and saw being asked around town and on social media, with regard to whether or not the new Maine Savings Amphitheater would be ready for the big Lynyrd Skynyrd Concert that was to take place this past weekend.

The venue was supposed to open the season on June 23rd with country artist Dierks Bentley, but that show was canceled with just a couple of days of notice to concertgoers.

The reason for the cancellation was a bit ambiguous, which led some to speculate about the venue, which has been under constant construction pretty much since 2020, and whether it would be ready in time for the season.

The Maine Savings Amphitheater replied in a cheeky way on social media (but ultimately took that down after sparking some strong feelings from folks who were hoping to see the country show.

The Bentley cancellation shifted the official opening concert to the one that took place this past Sunday; The Outlaws, Marshall Tucker Band and Lynyrd Skynyrd.

As Sunday afternoon rolled around, and people started to make their way to the amphitheater, you could tell people were excited to be out and about and going to concerts again.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 1, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 1, Cori Skall
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You could tell, simply from the walk leading up to the building entrance gate, that there were going to be a lot of people attending this concert.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 3, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 3, Cori Skall
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They streamlined the process and had multiple Will Call windows open and at least half-a-dozen metal detectors at the entrance, so while the lines were long, they moved quickly.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 4, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 4, Cori Skall
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You could definitely see there was more work to be done on the space, but the sections they had opened (the 100s, 200s and 300s) were ready to go.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 6, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 6, Cori Skall
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Separate spots to get food and drinks made grabbing snacks on the way to your seat a pretty easy experience. They didn't have everything on the menu yet, but what they had was yummy.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 7, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 7, Cori Skall
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One thing a lot of people have been excited about was the addition of actual bathrooms to replace the long lines of port-a-potties.

Passing by, they looked nice.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 8, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 8, Cori Skall
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Later that evening, between sets, the lines to the bathroom were crazy long, prompting some to ask about opening up some of the adjoining port-a-potties out in the front of the venue. While the line was lengthy, it did move quickly.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 25, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 25, Cori Skall
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Once you got inside, they had attendants in the bathrooms helping to make sure to direct traffic to the empty stalls. They did run out of water to the women's room at one point later in the night, but I'm sure they'll be ironing out that detail before the next show.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 14, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 14, Cori Skall
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The flow of folks in and out of the different sections that were open was actually pretty steady and pretty easy, for the most part.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 16, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 16, Cori Skall
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Sections were easy to find, and there were plenty of ushers around to help people find their seats.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 12, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 12, Cori Skall
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The way the new sections have been set up also means that the views of the stage have greatly improved.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 17, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 17, Cori Skall
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And they had some drink carts set up in the different sections so if you wanted a simple drink, you didn't have to go all the way back out to the food court area to get it. There were reports of some of the beer houses running out of booze before the headliners took the stage, but again, that's a detail I am sure will be improved upon by the next performance.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 19, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 19, Cori Skall
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Waterfront Concerts Founder, Alex Gray was even spotted doing some bush pruning in one of the top sections during the Marshall Tucker Band set.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 21, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 21, Cori Skall
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The Concert Itself

Now, to the concert itself. All 3 bands on the bill are iconic American Rock bands who have been touring the good old U.S. of A. for just about 50 years each.

The evening started with The Outlaws.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 11, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 11, Cori Skall
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As the crowd started to build, the audience really came alive when they played a cover of Neil Young's "Keep On Rockin In The Free World."

Lynyrd Skynyrd 18, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 18, Cori Skall
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Next up was the Marshall Tucker Band.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 24, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 24, Cori Skall
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Much to the delight of the audience, one of the remaining founders of the band, Doug Gray, did his best to belt out the band's most recognizable songs aided by a newer addition to the band, Chris Hicks.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 23, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 23, Cori Skall
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After a brief set change and a sunset, the crow came to their feet, as Lynyrd Skynyrd took the stage to AC/DC's "Thunderstruck" and they went right into their hit "Working for the MCA".

Lynyrd Skynyrd 28, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 28, Cori Skall
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Johnny Van Zant kept things rolling, from one hit to the next, taking any chance he could get to thank our troops, and extend his gratitude to the crowd for coming out on the 4th of July weekend to help them rock.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 26, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 26, Cori Skall
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The band played all their hits, and the crowd seemed to revel in the ability to take in the sound on such a grand scale again, after so many years of pandemic-related closures.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 30, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 30, Cori Skall
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Lynyrd Skynyrd 32, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 32, Cori Skall
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Lynyrd Skynyrd 34, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 34, Cori Skall
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The improvements to the layout and the addition of the big screens on either side of the stage meant there really wasn't a bad spot in the house.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 36, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 36, Cori Skall
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Ending it as they always do, Skynyrd sent the crowd home to an encore of "Freebird" at the audience's request.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 37, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 37, Cori Skall
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While it was certainly a work in progress, as the folks from Waterfront Concerts said it would be, the overall experience was a good one. If they continue to build and smooth out the wrinkles, there's potential for this to be a really great first concert season in the new spot.

Lynyrd Skynyrd 10, Cori Skall
Lynyrd Skynyrd 10, Cori Skall
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It will be cool to see the rest of the sections come together and how the final result takes shape. For now, just keep in mind that the building is still a work in progress.

Maine Savings Amphitheater 2022 Concert Line-Up

Here is who is coming in concert in Bangor along the waterfront this summer.