May 30-June 1
Embrace your inner pirate with a weekend celebration of tall ships, re-enactments of Blackbeard's sea battles, live music, and plenty of pirate-themed fun. Downtown Hampton, Va. Fri. Grand Pirates Ball 7 p.m.; Sat. 10 a.m.-10 p.m., (fireworks at 9 p.m.); Sun. noon-6 p.m. 757-727-0900; www.blackbeardfestival.com.
May 31-June 1
Maritime Model Expo
Radio-controlled model boats of all shapes and sizes will be on display, and in the water for demonstrations and races at this annual festival, sponsored by the North American Steamboat Modelers Association and hosted by the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Md. Sat. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sun. 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
May 31-June 1
Maryland Yacht Club Opening and Queen of the Chesapeake Pageant
The Maryland Yacht Club will be celebrating its 106th opening with a weekend-long open house. There will be lawn boutique sale, live music, food and drink, and the Queen of the Chesapeake pageant-with princesses from yacht clubs around the Bay arriving by boat and saluted by cannon fire. Maryland Yacht Club, Pasadena, Md. 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; Sat. pageant 1 p.m. 410-255-4444; www.mdyc.org.
Rockin' on the River
The shores of Middle River will be hoppin' during this huge party, featuring live music, a tug-of-war competition, food and drinks, all to raise money for the Marine Trades Association of Baltimore County. Conrad's Ruth Villa, Middle River, Md. 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m. 410-335-6450; www.conradsvilla.com.
Bermuda Ocean Race
Head out on the Severn River to watch the start of this bluewater race from Annapolis to St. George, Bermuda. Eastport Yacht Club, Annapolis. 1:30 p.m.
Potomac River Festival
Kick off this weekend-long party on Friday night with a fire engine parade and the Miss Colonial Beach pageant, then continue through Sunday with carnival rides, arts and crafts, activities, a boat parade, concerts and fireworks. Colonial Beach, Va. 774-392-4986. www.colonial-beach-virginia-attractions.com.
Norfolk's huge annual maritime festival features three days of family fun, including a parade of sail, visiting tall ships, live entertainment on multiple stages, on-the-water activities, fireworks and more. Town Point Park, Norfolk. Fri.-Sat. noon-11 p.m.; Sun. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. 757-441-2345; www.festevents.org.
Raiders & Invaders Weekend
This three-day weekend of War of 1812 themed activities will include a ton of live music, tours, an interactive play, arts activities, street theater performances, demonstrations, exhibits and more. Leonardtown, Md.
Fri. 5-8 p.m.; Sat. noon-10 p.m.; Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. www.raidersandinvaders.com.
Cobb Island Day
Celebrate the arrival of summer on Cobb Island with food, games, crafts and live entertainment. Cobb Island, Md. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 301-259-4632; www.charlescountymd.gov.
Upper Chesapeake Hospice Regatta
Sail in this local qualifier for the National Hospice Regatta or watch from shore at the Concord Point Lighthouse while enjoying a party and dinner under the stars. Concord Point Lighthouse, Havre de Grace, Md. 5-10:30 p.m. 877-640-1809; www.uchfoundation.org.
Virginia's Clean the Bay Day
Volunteers from around the Bay will get down and dirty to help the Chesapeake Bay Foundation clean up the Bay, from Cape Charles to Gloucester Point and everywhere in between. Virginia Bay-wide. 9 a.m.-noon. 800-SAVE-BAY; www.cbf.org.
Great Chesapeake Bay Swim
Cheer on the brave swimmers as they plunge into the Bay and swim four and a half miles, alongside the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, then under it and across to Hemingway's on the Eastern Shore. Sandy Point State Park and Hemingway's Restaurant, Stevensville, Md. 9 a.m. 856-468-0010; www.bayswim.com.
Cock Island Race
Gather along Portsmouth's shores to watch racers dodge the barges and ships on the Elizabeth River. Then head to the parties on Friday and Saturday nights. North Landing, Portsmouth, Va. 757-393-8481; www.visitportsva.com.
Antique and Classic Boat Festival
The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum's campus will be filled with beautiful antique and classic vessels. There will also be boatbuilding demonstrations, maritime vendors, the Arts at Navy Point juried art show, children's activities and much more. Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St. Michaels, Md. Fri. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.;
Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 410-437-8108; www.cbmm.org.
1812 Sunset Supper Cruise
This cruise aboard the Calvert Marine Museum's Wm. B. Tennison will visit the St. Leonard's Creek-the site of the largest on-water battle in Maryland's history-while experts and authors Dr. Ralph Eshelman and Don Shomette discuss the battle and Joshua Barney's standoff with the British. Reservations required. Calvert Marine Museum, Solomons, Md. 5-8 p.m. 410-326-2042; www.calvertmarinemuseum.com.
Jibs Up Fundraiser
Help the Dee of St. Mary's get a new jib at this fundraising party complete with live entertainment, local fare, beer and maritime memorabilia on display. J.C. Lore Oyster House, Solomons, Md. 4-7 p.m. 410-326-2042; www.calvertmarinemuseum.com.
This newly expanded waterfront party to benefit the West/Rhode Riverkeeper will have two stages of live music, canoe and kayak rides, boat tours, a blessing-of-the-fleet ceremony, maritime artwork for sale and a down-home fish fry with locally caught seafood. Discovery Village, Shady Side, Md. Noon-6 p.m.
Cambridge Second Saturday
Visit Cambridge, Md., and enjoy its monthly gallery events, late shopping hours, special dining deals and live entertainment. Cambridge, Md. 5-9 p.m. 443-477-0843; www.cambridgemainstreet.com.
St. Mary's Crab Festival
Get crabby with seafood a' plenty, plus live music, a crab-picking contest, arts and crafts vendors and cooking demonstrations. St. Mary's County Fairgrounds, Leonardtown, Md. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. 301-475-4200; www.stmaryscrabfestival.com.
Liberty Ship Cruise
Take a trip aboard the last remaining troop ship from World War II, the John W. Brown, and experience what life was like aboard a Liberty Ship, USO style, with historic demonstrations, military flybys and re-enactments. Tickets required. Cruise Maryland Terminal, Baltimore. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 410-558-0164; www.ssjohnwbrown.org.
Bands in the Sand
Dance the night away at this beach-theme fundraiser for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. Sponsored by the Boatyard Bar & Grill, the party will feature live bands, drinks, food and an art auction. Philip Merrill Environmental Center, Annapolis. 5-10:30 p.m. 443-482-2111; www.cbf.org.
Tall Ships at Cape Charles Festival
Tall ships from the Bay and beyond will visit Cape Charles, Va., for this third annual festival. There will be ship tours, arts and crafts vendors, a "pirate camp" for children, model boatbuilding, live entertainment, historic reenactors and more. Cape Charles Town Harbor, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 757-331-4620; www.tallshipscapecharles.com.
This festival celebrates the 18th-century river batteau by sending a fleet of replica flat-bottom cargo boats on a week-long trek down Virginia's James River, from Lynchburg to Richmond. The pre-festival party on Friday in Lynchburg features a parade and live entertainment. The launch of the boats takes place on Saturday at Percival's Island in Lynchburg. 11 a.m. 434-528-3950; vacanals.org.
Father's Day Cruise
Treat your dad to a brunch or evening cruise aboard the buyboat Wm. B. Tennison. Pre-registration required. Calvert Marine Museum, Solomons, Md. 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., 5-6:30 p.m. 410-326-2042 ext. 41; www.calvertmarinemuseum.com.
Safe Boating Course
The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum will host this two-day course to help new boaters obtain their Maryland boating safety certificate. Advance registration required. Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum,
St. Michaels, Md. 410-745-4941; www.cbmm.org.
Delmarva Chicken Festival
If you've always wanted to attend the Delmarva Chicken Festival, this is your last chance; organizers have decided to discontinue the long-running after this year. The final festival will include Delmarva's giant fry pan, a car show, live music, children's activities, a carnival, arts and crafts, and (of course) chickens. Queen Anne's County 4-H Park, Centreville, Md. 800-878-2449; www.dpichicken.org.
Cardboard Boat Races
Up to 50 homemade cardboard boats will try to stay afloat during this hilarious annual day of racing to benefit Special Olympics Maryland. This year's race lineup includes an "iron-man" long course, a corporate challenge course, a just-for-laughs course and a kids' course. The Strand, Oxford, Md. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. 410-789-6677; www.oxfordcbr.org.
Potomac River Poker Run
This popular poker run includes stops at historic landmarks like Fort Washington and Mount Vernon and, of course, both Tim's Rivershore restaurants. Leesylvania State Park, Woodbridge, Va. Call for times.
Celebrate the Rappahannock "Rivah" with a day of family fun including parades, maritime demonstrations, an antique boat show, the Taste of Tappahannock event and a rubber duck race. Tappahannock, Va.
10 a.m.-5 p.m. 888-973-4443; www.rivahfest.com.
End Hunger Dragon Boat Festival
Head to North Beach, Md., to watch dragon boats race off the beach. Then enjoy an afternoon of live music and family and kids activities on the boardwalk. North Beach, Md. 9 a.m. 410-257-5672; www.endhungercalvert.org.
Get out on the water with the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum's boatbuilders. Visitors will be able to try out all manner of small vessels, including melonseeds, rowing skiffs and sailing bateaus. Instructors will be available for beginners. Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St. Michaels, Md. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 410-745-2916; www.cbmm.org.
This home-grown music festival features three stages and more than 20 artists, plus plenty of activities for the whole family. 723 Second St., Eastport, Annapolis. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. 410-916-5500; www.eastportarockin.com.
Summertime Blues Festival
Enjoy blues music by local, regional and national blues acts while enjoying the view of the Susquehanna River from the orchard on the grounds of the Steppingstone Museum. Havre de Grace, Md. 2-8 p.m.
St. Mary's Beer Festival
This annual festival will feature tours of Van Sweringen's Ordinary, one of the first taverns in the colonies, plus beer- and cider-making demonstrations, beer tastings, food, live music and arts and crafts. St. Mary's City Museum, St. Mary's City, Md. Noon-6 p.m. 240-895-4977; www.stmaryscitybeerfest.org.
Thunder on the Narrows
This high-speed racing event features hydroplanes and Jersey skiffs racing at speeds over 100 mph in Kent Narrows. Kent Island Yacht Club, Chester, Md. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 410-643-4101; www.kentnarrowsracing.com.
This on-the-water kayak, canoe and stand-up paddle festival will feature tours, demos, sunset paddles, races and seminars. Chesapeake, Va. 757-421-7151; www.kayaxpedition.com.
1812 Fair and Reenactment
Tall ships will line the shores at Jefferson Patterson Park during this two-day extravaganza, which will feature a reenactment of the 1814 Battle of St. Leonard Creek. There will also be ship tours, music, arts vendors, food and more. Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. (ship battle reenactment 2 p.m.) 410-586-8501; www.jefpat.org.
Miles River Paddle & Island Exploration
Explore the Miles River's Rauss Island by kayak with the Midshore Riverkeeper Conservancy on this first Explore the Chesapeake tour series conducted by the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. The island is a haven for turtles, osprey, nesting heron and other wildlife. Registration required. Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St. Michaels, Md. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. 410-745-4941; www.cbmm.org.
Gwynn's Island Festival
This 65th annual festival will celebrate Gwynn's Island with fun for the whole family, food, music, arts and crafts and more. Gwynn's Island, Va. Fri. chicken dinner 4-7 p.m.; Sat. festival 9 a.m.-3:45 p.m.
Smithfield Olden Days
Celebrate the good old days at this townwide party that includes a parade, a barbecue cook-off, live music, children's activities and the wacky, anything-that-floats Pagan River raft race. Smithfield, Va. www.visitsmithfieldisleofwight.com.
Hampton Jazz Festival
This star-studded jazz festival attracts the nation's top blues, soul, pop and jazz performers. Hampton Coliseum, Hampton, Va. Fri. 7:30 p.m.; Sat. 7 p.m.; Sun. 2 p.m. 757-838-5650; www.hamptonjazzfestival.com.
This fun annual tournament has a top prize of $5,000. There will also be youth awards and more. Dare Marina and Yacht Sales, Yorktown, Va. Fishing 6 a.m.-5 p.m. Fish fry and party to follow. 757-262-9004; www.flounderbowl.com.
Tilghman Island Seafood Festival
Tilghman Island's summer seafood festival is a fun-filled day of crab races, trot-line baiting competitions, music and local seafood too. Tilghman, Md. 11 a.m. 410-866-2677; www.tilghmanmd.com.
Tim's Not-on-the-4th-of-July Fireworks
Get your Fourth of July fireworks fix early as Tim's Rivershore Restaurant and Crabhouse's display lights up the sky. Dumfries, Va. 9 p.m. 703-441-1375; www.timsrivershore.com.
Log Canoe Races
This "4th of July" series brings the log canoe fleet to St. Michaels, Md., for two days of classic boat racing. Hosted by the Miles River Yacht Club. St. Michaels, Md. Races Sat. 2 p.m.; Sun. 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.