Issue: June 2003
Best of the Bay 2003

Every year we ask our readers to tell us what they like to do and where they like to go on the Bay. It's tradition. This year, however, we tweaked tradition - that is, we did things a little differently. For one, we mailed our surveys immediately following the boating season (instead of waiting until the dead of winter). That way, we figured, sum-mer memories would still be fresh in everyone's mind. We also asked some different questions, (we're always trying to come up with new ones). Out of the 5,000 survey letters mailed to readers (randomly, but evenly spread throughout the region), we got just a little over 400 back (409 to be exact). And, as usual, we learned a lot - or, in some cases, confirmed our suspicions. As is generally the case with these surveys, more powerboaters than sailors responded (nearly three to one). And while a quarter of all respondents cruise with their pets (that's what they told us last year, too), nearly a third of you cruise with children (we forgot to ask just whose children you cruise with). About half of you belong to some kind of boating club (and that doesn't mean the other half can't get into a boating club). As ever, you're a salty bunch. You like to spend your time on the Bay cruising, fishing, sailing in a steady breeze or just anchored out (preferably in calm seas). Just about all of you spend 10 days or more on your boat each season, and most of you have over 10 years of experience on the Bay. And, just in case you didn't get one of those questionnaires in the mail, don't hesitate to let us know what you think about life here on the Bay. E-mail or snail mail, keep those cards and letters coming.


    Where possible we've listed a category's top 10 vote-getters (with tie votes in alphabetical order). In cases where total votes weren't great enough to indicate 10 clear winners, we've reduced the list accordingly.


Favorite Town to Visit with Friends

1. St. Michaels, Md.

2. Annapolis, Md.

3. Baltimore, Md.

4. Oxford, Md.

5. Solomons, Md.

6. Rock Hall, Md.

7. Chestertown, Md.

8. Onancock, Va

9. Alexandria, Va.

9. Chesapeake City, Md.


Favorite Town to Visit with Family

1. St. Michaels, Md.

2. Annapolis, Md.

3. Baltimore, Md.

4. Solomons, Md.

5. Rock Hall, Md.

6. Oxford, Md.

7. Chestertown, Md.

8. Crisfield, Md.

9. Norfolk, Va.


Favorite Cruising River

1. Chester River

2. Potomac River

3. Wye River

4. Sassafras River

5. Rappahannock River

6. Choptank River

7. Magothy River

8. James River

9. Patuxent River

9. Tred Avon River


Favorite Anchorage

1. Still Pond

2. Fairlee Creek

2. Rhode River

3. LaTrappe Creek

4. Harness Creek

5. Corsica River

6. Dobbins Island (Magothy River)

7. St. Leonard Creek


Favorite Overnight Marina

1. St. Michaels Marina (St. Michaels, Md.)

2. Inner Harbor Marina of Baltimore (Baltimore, Md.)

3. Spring Cove Marina (Solomons, Md.)

4. Zahniser's Yachting Center (Solomons, Md.)

5. Herrington Harbour South (Friendship, Md.)

5. York River Yacht Haven (Gloucester Point, Va.)

6. Mears Point Marina (Grasonville, Md.)

7. The Tides (Irvington, Va.)

7. Waterside Marina (Norfolk, Va.)

8. Rock Hall Landing (Rock Hall, Md.)


Favorite Seasonal Marina

1. Home Dock

2. Herrington Harbour North (Deale, Md.)

2. York River Yacht Haven (Gloucester Point, Va.)

3. Mears Point Marina (Grasonville, Md.)

4. Haven Harbour Marina (Rock Hall, Md.)

4. Herrington Harbour South (Friendship, Md.)

4. Spring Cove Marina (Solomons, Md.)

4. Tolchester Marina (Chestertown, Md., Bay side)

5. Inner Harbor Marina of Baltimore (Baltimore, Md.)

5. Tall Timbers (Tall Timbers, Md.)


Favorite Boating Supply Store

1. Fawcett Boat Supplies (Annapolis, Md.)

2. BoatU.S. (Annapolis, Md.)

3. West Marine (Deltaville, Va.)

4. BoatU.S. (Alexandria, Va.)

5. West Marine (Annapolis, Md.)

6. BoatU.S. (Rockville, Md.)

6. West Marine (Hampton, Va.)

7. BoatU.S. (Deltaville, Va.)

8. BoatU.S. (New Castle, Del.)

8. West Marine (Easton, Md.)

9. BoatU.S. (Virginia Beach, Va.)

9. West Marine (Virginia Beach, Va.)


Favorite Fishing Tackle Shop

1. Anglers (Annapolis, Md.)

2. Green Top (Glen Allen, Va.)

3. Bass Pro Shops (Arundel Mills Mall, Hanover, Md.)

4. Marty's Sporting Goods (Edgewater, Md.)

5. Herb's Tackle (North East, Md.)

5. J and W Seafood (Deltaville, Va.)

5. Sarge's Bait and Tackle (Elkton, Md.)

5. T.G. Tochterman and Sons (Baltimore, Md.)


Favorite Fishing Tournament

1. MSSA Spring Tournament

1. White Marlin Open

2. Reedville Bluefish Tournament


Favorite Family Restaurant

1. Crab Claw (St. Michaels, Md.)

1. Waterman's Crab House (Rock Hall, Md.)

2. Cantler's Riverside Inn (Mill Creek, Annapolis, Md.)

2. Harrison's Chesapeake House (Tilghman, Md.)

2. Pirate's Cove (Galesville, Md.)

3. Harris' Crab House (Kent Narrows, Grasonville, Md.)

4. River's Inn (Gloucester Point, Va.)

4. Tim's Rivershore Restaurant and Crab-house (Dumphries, Va.)

5. Buddy's Crabs and Ribs (Annapolis, Md.)

5. Fisherman's Crab Deck (Kent Narrows, Grasonville, Md.)


Favorite Romantic Restaurant

1. The Narrows (Kent Narrows, Grasonville, Md.)

2. River's Inn (Gloucester Point, Va.)

3. Chart House (Annapolis, Md.)

4. Bayard House (Chesapeake City, Md.)

4. Inn at Perry Cabin (St. Michaels, Md.)

5. Dry Dock (Solomons, Md.)

5. Pirate's Cove (Galesville, Md.)

6. Osprey Point (Rock Hall, Md.)

6. Robert Morris Inn (Oxford, Md.)

6. Tides Inn (Irvington, Va.)


Favorite Place for Steamed Crabs

1. Crab Claw (St. Michaels, Md.)

2. Cantler's Riverside Inn (Mill Creek, Annapolis, Md.)

3. Waterman's Crab House (Rock Hall, Md.)

4. Harris' Crab House (Kent Narrows, Grasonville, Md.)

5. Fisherman's Crab Deck (Kent Narrows, Grasonville, Md.)

6. Tim's Rivershore Restaurant and Crabhouse (Dumphries, Va.)

7. Mike's Restaurant and Crab House (Riva, Md.)

8. Captain John's (Cobb Island, Md.)

8. Crab House (St. Michaels, Md.)

9. Kentmorr Restaurant and Crab House (Stevensville, Md., Bay side)


Favorite Place for Crabcakes

1. Cantler's Riverside Inn (Mill Creek, Annapolis, Md.)

2. Captain's Galley (Crisfield, Md.)

3. The Narrows (Kent Narrows, Grasonville, Md.)

3. Robert Morris Inn (Oxford, Md.)

4. River's Inn (Gloucester Point, Va.)

5. Fisherman's Crab Deck (Kent Narrows, Grasonville, Md.)

5. Tim's Rivershore Restaurant and Crabhouse (Dumphries, Va.)

6. Crab Claw (St. Michaels, Md.)

6. Stoney's (Broomes Island, Md.)

6. Stoney's (Solomons, Md.)


Favorite Spot for Wildlife Viewing

1. Wye River

2. Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge (Cambridge, Md.)

3. Eastern Neck Wildlife Refuge (mouth of the Chester River)

4. Eastern Shore

5. Chester River

6. Worton Creek

7. Home Dock

7. Still Pond

7. Swan Creek (Rock Hall, Md.)


Favorite Waterside Event

1. Urbanna Oyster Festival (Urbanna, Va.)

2. Norfolk Harborfest (Norfolk, Va.)

2. U.S. Sailboat Show (Annapolis, Md.)

3. U.S. Powerboat Show (Annapolis, Md.)

4. 4th of July Fireworks (Annapolis, Md.)

4. Eastport Yacht Club Lighted Boat Parade (Annapolis, Md.)

5. Log Canoe Races (Eastern Shore)

6. Chestertown Tea Party (Chestertown, Md.)

6. Hampton Bay Days (Hampton, Va.)


Favorite Bay Lighthouse

1. Thomas Point

2. Smith Point

3. Wolf Trap

4. New Point Comfort

5. Cove Point

6. Cape Henry

6. Turkey Point

7. Sharps Island

8. Baltimore Light

8. Sandy Point


Most Challenging Waterway

1. Kent Narrows

2. Annapolis harbor

3. South River

4. Mouth of the Potomac River

5. Fairlee Creek


Favorite Boat Charters

1. Deltaville Yachts (Deltaville, Va.)

1. Haven Charters (Rock Hall, Md.)


Favorite Place for Canvas/Sail Work

1. North Sails (Annapolis, Md.)

1. Tops by George (Virginia Beach, Va.)

2. Hayes Custom Canvas (Hayes, Va.)

3. Concord Point Sails and Rigging (Havre de Grace, Md.)

3. Meade Breese, Sailmaker (Rock Hall, Md.)

3. Scott's Sails (Urbanna, Va.)

4. Canvas Creations (Annapolis, Md.)

4. Danny's Canvas (Essex, Md.)

4. Potomac Sailmakers (Alexandria, Va.)

4. Quantum Sails (Annapolis, Md.)

4. Ship's Tailor (Deltaville, Va.)


Favorite Place for Electronics Gear

1. Mid-Shore Electronics (Cambridge, Md.)

2. Marine Electronics of Hartfield (Hartfield, Va.)

3. Martek Kent Island (Stevensville, Md.)


Favorite Place for Engine Work

1. Home Dock

2. Tolchester Marina (Chestertown, Md., Bay side)

3. Vosbury Marine (Whitehall Bay, Annapolis, Md.)