On Sunday, Aug. 11, the 10th annual Watermen’s Appreciation Day comes to the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Md., featuring a spirited boat docking contest, steamed crabs and other regional food, live music, beer, boat rides, family activities, and more. The fundraising event is organized by CBMM in cooperation with the Talbot Watermen Association, with proceeds benefiting both organizations.
The opportunity to meet the Chesapeake’s watermen, along with local steamed crabs, beer, and other food and beverages continue to highlight the waterfront festival.
Beginning at noon, the event’s “watermen’s rodeo” boat docking contest returns to the Miles River near CBMM’s 1879 Hooper Strait Lighthouse. Bleacher seating will be provided for spectators to the contest.
“It’s a great day of celebrating the Chesapeake Bay’s watermen—from the rodeo, to the cold beer, hot crabs, and live music” said TWA President Jeff Harrison. “And we’re grateful to partner with CBMM on this important fundraising event for the last 10 years.”
Starting at noon, the day’s catch of steamed crabs—served by watermen—will be available for purchase, in addition to beer, water, soda, hot dogs, hamburgers, ice cream, and more. Steamed crabs will be sold by the dozen, with pricing set by July 26 and posted at cbmm.org.
“We’ve consistently been able to sell a dozen steamed crabs with corn on the cob at $25,” said Harrison. “We’re hoping this year’s market will allow us to do the same.”
Also beginning at 11am, live music with Bird Dog and the Road Kings from the historic Tolchester Beach Bandstand will have people tapping their toes and dancing along CBMM’s waterfront.
Children and families can enjoy games and activities offered throughout the day. Later in the day, children’s on-the-water activities include a children’s row boat competition, with prizes awarded.
During Watermen’s Day, event-goers can take part in a silent auction in the Small Boat Shed, with all proceeds supporting the Talbot Watermen Association.
While at CBMM, guests can explore all 12 exhibitions buildings, including the 1879 Hooper Strait Lighthouse. Festival-goers can also watch the restoration of the 1912 tug Delaware, now underway in the shipyard through 2020. Special exhibitions include On Land and On Sea: A Century of Women in the Rosenfeld Collection, which continues through April 5, 2020, and Deconstructing Decoys: The Culture of Collecting, which continues in CBMM’s Waterfowling building through Nov. 1.
Admission to the 10am–5pm, rain-or-shine, event includes the boat docking contest, live music, numerous family activities, entrance to all CBMM exhibitions and historic structures, and is set at $18 for adults, $8 for children 6–17, with all children 5 years of age and under admitted free. CBMM members along with licensed watermen and their immediate families get discounted admission at $10 per adult, and $6 per child ages 6–17. Food and beverages are additional.
Advanced admission tickets can be purchased online at cbmm.org/watermensday, with tickets also sold at the door the day of the event. Discounted watermen’s tickets will also be available at the door the day of the event, with an active watermen’s license shown. Boat rides, steamed crabs, beer, and additional food and beverages will be available for purchase. Free event parking will be available at St. Michaels High School, with a complimentary shuttle service to and from CBMM running throughout the day.
For safety reasons, non-service dogs need to be kept home during CBMM festivals, including Watermen’s Appreciation Day. Carry-on alcohol from dock or land is also prohibited. Spectator boats wishing to view the competition from the water must remain outside the buoyed channel.
For more information, visit cbmm.org or call 410-745-2916.