For the past 30 years, the East End Seaport Museum and Marine Foundation in Greenport has celebrated the nautical history of the East End with its Maritime Festival, which continues this year on the weekend of Sept. 21 & 22.
Maritime Festival weekend begins on Friday night, Sept. 20, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. with the Land and Sea Gala cocktail party on the grounds of the Greenport Yacht and Shipbuilding Co. on Carpenter Street. Tickets are $125 for museum members, $150 for non-members and $150 extra for VIP access from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. and are available online here.
Saturday morning’s parade through downtown Greenport and the Blessing of the Waters kicks off on Main Street at 11 a.m. and introduces this year’s Grand Marshals, Greenport Harbor Brewery Founders Rich Vandenburgh & John Liegey (see sidebar).
The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.
The parade is followed by music and entertainment in Mitchell Park, including the Merry Merfolk contest at noon, displays of classic wooden boats, a kayak derby, flyboarding demonstrations, wood carving, food and artisanal vendors, children’s activities, fresh oysters, craft beers and local wines, and a lighthouse cruise to Long Beach Bar “Bug” Lighthouse at 4:30 p.m. — tickets to the cruise are $49 for adults and $19 for children.
Sunday morning starts off at 9 a.m. with Paul Drum’s Mermaid and Pirate Breakfast, hosted by Front Street Station, which raises money for the Paul Drum Children’s Nautical Education Program. For 8 weeks during the summer, the East End Seaport Museum & Marine Foundation offers this free program to children ages 8 to 12, enhancing their knowledge and enjoyment of the waters around us.
Costumes are encouraged at the breakfast, and expect to see your share of pirates and mermaids, have lots of giggles, sing sea chanteys and leave with a full belly, a painted face, balloons and something from a treasure chest filled with loot.
Tickets to the breakfast are $15. More details are online here.
Attendees can also visit the East End Seaport Museum, Railroad Museum, Fire Boat Museum, and Stirling Historical Society throughout the day’s festivities.
General admission to the festival is free, but, fees may apply to some activities. More details are online at www.eastendseaport.org.