The cannon boomed starting the annual 4th of July Boat Parade. And is that cannon ever loud!
Eight years ago, Melissa McCormick noticed there seemed to be a void in the day on the 4th of July. Growing up in Solomons on the water she decided a boat parade would be a great addition. She and her husband talked Jimmy Langley and Ted Haynie into joining them, decorating their boats in red, white and blue; and the first boat parade – of three – was born.
For the first four years they started at her mom’s and dad’s house – Alton and Joann Kersey. A very patriotic family, her dad loved the parade of boats. Mr. Kersey provided the “boom” for the parade. He had a 20-gauge cannon with blanks, and with a request from Melissa, he fired the cannon at noon to start the parade.
The parade has grown over the years, with more than twenty boats winding their way down Back Creek, around the point of Solomons, then up the Patuxent River in front of the Solomons Riverwalk.
Boats were decorated in patriotic flair, if it floated and could be decorated, it was! The boats were filled with happy captains and their crews.
1st place Chariot – Chris McNelis
2nd place – Mike Jordan
3rd place – Tommy Higgins
Special Award – Jeff and Katie Miller
Special thanks go out to The Pier, Kingfishers and the Calvert Marine Museum Store for donating prizes for the winners.
The parade continues to grow and the competition gets better every year. Consider decorating your boat and joining them next year! It’s a great way to celebrate the 4th of July!
Please enjoy the picture gallery!
Joyce Stinnett Baki / Calvert Beacon Reporter