Watch Rare Footage of Elvis Performing in Augusta, Maine 45 Years Ago Today
Many Mainers, whether they lived it or have heard the history, know that Elvis Presley was supposed to play at the Cumberland Country Civic Center on August 17 and 18 in 1977. Sadly he died the day he was supposed to arrive in Portland. But what a lot of people may not realize, is that he did perform in Augusta just three months prior on this day in 1977.
Elvis stayed at the Sheraton Inn Hotel, the two round buildings across from the Maine Mall, now the Doubletree hotel when he came to Maine to perform at the Augusta Civic Center on May 24, 1977. There weren't many hotels in Augusta at the time that were fit for the King of Rock 'N Roll so he stayed at the Sheraton and traveled up the Maine Turnpike to do his show. This was also the hotel he was to stay in for his show at the Cumberland County Civic Center.
Tickets for Elvis in Augusta were just $15. With inflation, that's the equivalent of $67 today, which is still relatively cheap.
Someone in the crowd at that Elvis show in Augusta had a camera and filmed about 7 minutes of footage of the concert on this day in 1977. It's common to see this in the era of cell phones with built-in cameras with high definition. This was the era of film and it's grainy and blurry for most of it, but it still gives you the sense of what an amazing performance it was.
Someone also recorded a full hour of the concert. Again, this was 1977, so the quality is about what you'd expect of someone with a tape recorder in the building without a direct audio feed.
There's a plaque at the Augusta Civic Center memorializing Elvis with the date of his appearance there on May 24, 1977, given as a gift from "Friends and Fans of Elvis Presley," that you can see in this video looking back on that day.
The King of Rock 'N Roll's only appearance in Maine is something that will never be forgotten.