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  • Writer's pictureKirk

Progress Vs Traditions

Years ago I used to like to travel to Carthage, Maine and join in the festivities at the Skye Theater. This was just a renovated building in the mountainous woods in the country. It was first opened in 2004 but closed just ten years later.

Countryside of the theater.

As you can see, the theater is nothing to look at, it's just an old country building that many locals poured their sweat into to renovate into a theater to accommodate Celtic and folk music talent from the broad area.

The inside of the theater looked much better than the outside with the wooden walls and the acoustic design. Really great Maine workmanship at its best!

The chairs were quite basic but padded. They were comfortable enough. Expectations shouldn't be too great at ticket prices being contained in the $15 -$20 range. A range accommodating for lower income families who may attend these events.

What was really cool about these events is that many local wannabe talents would gather before the show and just jam together in a special room to the side. This made for a great community event, and added to the overall mystique of the place.

The stage was of a decent size and even had elevated areas where they could put on their shows. You can see the well-placed speakers, which made it easy to hear everything that was going on.

I attended the events here may be a half a dozen times or more. I always enjoyed the talent they brought there, even though I had never heard of most of the bands that frequented this place. I just enjoyed the energy and enthusiasm of the crowd that synergized with the performers

Really this place was unique to Maine. It was owned and operated by a man named Phill McIntyre.

I remember attending the last couple of events there in 2014. Phill had announced before each performance that he was closing that year but he didn't say why. It was quite mysterious to me anyway why he'd be closing this after just 10 years when it seemed to be doing so well. Obviously, he was very enthusiastic about the program.

He said that he would be continuing to bring this talent in, but they would be performing in local venues like church buildings and such, rather than at the Skye theater.

It wasn't until a year or so later that I realize what was happening. He had sold or leased that mountainous land to developers who would install these large wind turbines to generate electricity. These things are giant eyesores in Maine in my opinion.

This is what replaced Skye Theater on that mountain.

I know now why he didn't say why he was closing it down because it certainly seemed like a sellout to many. Cashing in on the profit of his land at the partial expense of the community who helped him build that theater. But that's just a personal opinion on my part.

Obviously people can do whatever they want with their land. Selling it or leasing it for a profit is capitalism at its best and I certainly don't discourage it. It just makes me a bit disappointed to see progress at the expense of traditions such as local folk talent.

This may seem like a knock on Phill McIntyre, and those associated with the decision to close it down to profit from renewable energy, but I really have no right to take that position. There's really no one to blame here, it's just the natural progression of things I guess.

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Mike Wells
Mike Wells
Apr 28
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

I used to attend some concerts there as well I took my mom to some of the events there. Great music from Canada very talented musicians. I never had thought of why he shut it down but now realize why.

Apr 28
Replying to

Yeah they brought some unique talent to the area. I attended one event at a local church after he shut it down, but it just wasn’t the same

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