Saturday, September 3, 2011

Camden Windjammer festival

As we passed through the city of Camden, Maine, we came upon this beautiful harbor and decided to stop for a look around.  By day’s end, we felt as though it was one of the most picturesque and family friendly cities we have ever visited.

As luck would have it, this happened to be Camden’s Annual Windjammer Festival and the harbor and town was bustling with activities.

It was complete with pirates, 14 windjammers, schooners, historic yachts and sail boats.

Highlights included schooner and windjammer sailing trips, music, fireworks, a Heritage Fair, pirate invasions and duels , cannon firings, a kids lobster crate race, a chowder cooking contest, tips on how to catch and buy lobsters, evening pirate movies, and various other family events.

After starting our day with an excellent all-you-can-eat wild blueberry pancake and sausage breakfast--

                              --we watched the family boat building contest.

This is an excellent family event and these boats will race tomorrow afternoon in the annual family boat race.

Our attention was soon diverted to the harbor and the huge crowd that was building there in anticipation of the annual kids Lobster Crate Race.

It’s a test of speed and dexterity as kids race across floating, slippery lobster crates tied in a line across the inner harbor.
This is the winning form.  He made 4 round trips without falling in the two minute time period.

The trick is to keep up your speed or you begin to sink the crates and it’s all down stream from there on.

A walk along the wharf brought us to the 86-foot schooner Appledore 2, the largest vessel offering short day sails out of Camden.

                                   We were just in time for the next sail--

                                            -- and quickly hopped aboard.

The Appledore can carry up to 49 passengers on private trips and up to 20 passengers on overnight voyages.

She has a broad deck that you can stroll without having to duck the rigging.

                       This is a traditional wooden tall ship, designed for adventure.

                                 Seaworthy and stable, she was built in Maine in 1978.

She has sailed around the world, and her voyages have been chronicled in two books.

During the winter you can join her for tropical sailing and snorkeling in Key West, Florida.

She is presently looking for crew members to sign on for the winter trip south from Camden, Maine to Key West, FL.

Contact Skipper Jerry, also known as “The Helmsman Who Guides, The Luminous Beacon, or The Shining Polar Star”, for further information.

We stayed for the night at the Elk’s Lodge in Augusta, Maine after visiting the beautiful state capitol building.

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