PORTLAND, Maine -- Maine and New Hampshire braced for potential flooding from Hurricane Arthur while Vermont regained electricity after a series of powerful storms lashed the state. And communities across the region rescheduled July 4 plans because of the bad weather.

Portland postponed its Independence Day concert and fireworks until Saturday, while Augusta pushed its fireworks back to Aug. 2. Belfast resident Sheila Dassatt said she had hoped to attend a lobster boat race in Jonesport but it was pushed back to Sunday.

"We normally get out for this," Dassatt said. "It's just been one of those weekends. We'll see how things look on Sunday."

Southeast New Hampshire and southern Maine were under flash flood watches until 8 a.m. Saturday, and Arthur was expected to take heavy bands of rain to both states, National Weather Service forecaster Chris Kimble said. Coastal areas were under a high surf advisory from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, he said.

"Anybody going to the beach on Saturday should be alert for that," he said.

Though Arthur proved to be far less damaging than feared, it left tens of thousands of people without power Friday in a swipe at North Carolina's Outer Banks and brought lousy Fourth of July beach weather to the Northeast as it veered out to sea.

Storms caused tens of thousands of power outages in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont from Thursday night into Friday morning.


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Green Mountain Power in Vermont reported more than 2,500 customers were still without power on Friday afternoon after the storms. More than 20,000 customers' power was restored overnight, the utility said, and more than 1,000 others were restored during the day Friday. Most of the outages should be resolved by late Friday, but some could linger to Sunday, the utility said.

Most of the outages were attributed to storms that rolled through with winds up to 70 miles an hour along the U.S. Route 4 corridor in Rutland and Windsor counties. The utility said in a statement that it "amassed an army of workers from within Vermont and drawing from Massachusetts, Connecticut and Quebec" to repower the state.

Aroostook County in northern Maine had more than 1,500 customers lose power, utility Emera Maine said. Almost all the outages were restored early Friday. Southern Maine and New Hampshire had only scattered outages, utilities reported.

Northern Maine's outages were caused by "powerful thunderstorms" in the area, a spokesman for Emera said.

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Associated Press writer Wilson Ring contributed to this report from Montpelier, Vermont.