CBMM welcomes back Antique & Classic Boat Festival this weekend
ST. MICHAELS, Md., June 14, 2023 – The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum welcomes a Father’s Day weekend tradition back to its waterfront campus, presenting the 35th Antique & Classic Boat Festival and Coastal Arts Fair on Friday-Sunday.
The festival celebrating the past, present, and future of antique and classic boating runs from 10am-5pm on Friday and Saturday and 10am-3pm on Sunday. You can buy tickets now, and they will also be available at the door. Remember, admission is good for two days.
Hosted by the Chesapeake Bay Chapter of the Antique & Classic Boat Society, this is one of the largest classic boat shows in the Mid-Atlantic region and much more. This year’s festival highlights the theme of “Show Us Your First Love,” inviting boat owners to display their boats and share stories about what first launched them on their love of classic and antique boats.
Whether you’re a returning guest or this is your first time, these FAQs about the festivities are designed to help you to get the most out of your time on campus.
Where should I park?
Parking is available at CBMM. Please note that CBMM’s parking lot will reach capacity during large events.
On Saturday, overflow parking is located at St. Michaels Middle/High School on Seymour Avenue with shuttles running on a loop to and from CBMM from 10am-5:30pm.
Additional public parking lots and street parking are available throughout the town. Find more things to know about visiting CBMM festivals here.
What are all these boats?
Throughout the weekend, CBMM’s campus and docks will be filled with 100+ antique and classic boats representing a multitude of makers and eras, inviting guests to take a nostalgic step back in time and appreciate these venerable vessels. (The Golden Cup, a DJ who spins classic tunes from the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s will provide a fitting sound track!)
Builders represented at the festival typically include Chris-Craft, Lyman, Gar Wood, Elco, Thompson, Trumpy, Owens, Egg Harbor, and other great classic marques.
Owners of boats in all phases of restoration are expected to participate, as part of a varied collection featuring historic (up to 1918), antique (1919-1942), classic (1943-1975), late classic (1976-1997), and contemporary (any wooden boat built within the last 25 years) examples.
A reminder that boarding boats is at the discretion of the owner.
What is the Coastal Arts Fair?
One of the festival’s highlights is a juried Coastal Arts Fair. In the courtyard surrounding the Tolchester Beach Bandstand, guests can browse vendors hailing from as far away as Canada and Florida showcasing products, services, and art represent in the boats, the water, and coastal life. There will be additional vendors set up in the Small Boat Shed.
There will also be a nautical flea market and a Field of Dreams for those looking to buy a classic boat set up near the Mill Street Gate along CBMM’s Living Shoreline. Also, be sure to stop by the Antique & Classic Boat Society’s Ship Store to learn more about the organization and buy your festival merchandise.
Can I take a boat ride?
Yes, members of the Chesapeake Bay Chapter of the Antique & Classic Boat Society will be taking guests out on the water from 1-3pm on both Saturday and Sunday. Sign up for free to experience a classic vessel in action at the deck adjacent to the Van Lennep Auditorium. Rides may be limited or not available depending on boat availability and weather conditions.
What’s going on in the Van Lennep Auditorium?
Driven by the Antique & Classic Boat Society’s mission of continuing the legacy of these boats through preservation, restoration and education, the festival will feature a lineup of 10 seminars on Friday and Saturday highlighting experts, historians, and authors. These talks run from 10am-3pm both days and are free for festival guests and participants. The full schedule is available here.
What activities are there for kids?
There’s fun for the whole family at the festival. Check out the kids’ boat building station set up between CBMM’s Bay History building on Saturday and Sunday afternoon from 1-3 pm. There’s also a family-friendly scavenger hunt offering an interactive exploration of the festival that can be picked up in the CBMM Welcome Center or ACBS Ship Store.
What else is on the schedule?
On Saturday and Sunday, the day starts with a flag raising ceremony on Navy Point led by a local chapter of the Sea Scouts.
Of course, festival guests are encouraged to explore all the exhibitions and historic structures on CBMM’s 18-acre campus as well as its working Shipyard and historic floating fleet. Your Chesapeake adventure begins here.
What is there to eat and drink?
There will be a handful of regional vendors selling food and beverages, as well as a bar offering a variety of selections of beer and cocktails adjacent to the Shipyard.
Can I bring my dog to the festival?
For safety reasons, non-service dogs need to be kept home during CBMM festivals, including the Antique & Classic Boat Festival.
What else is going on in town?
We’re thrilled to welcome you to St. Michaels, which has been named one of USA Today‘s Top 10 best small coastal towns.
Be sure to take a stroll around our quaint historic Eastern Shore town and get a sense of all that it has to offer. Visit StMichaelsMD.org to learn more and plan out the rest of your stay here.