2018 Festival Info
Join us this September 5 – 9 for the
Connecticut Maritime Heritage Festival
The Connecticut Maritime Heritage Festival is a five day annual celebration promoting the State of Connecticut’s maritime heritage and spirit of innovation in conjunction with Connecticut Maritime Heritage Week. This annual event will draw 60,000 visitors in 2018 to the historic Port of New London waterfront including individuals and families who experience unique tours aboard a fleet of boats including U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard ships, merchant marine vessels, and historic schooners. Festival events include a U.S. Coast Guard search & rescue demonstration, a “Celebrate America” main stage concert, a “Swingin’ on the Pier” dance party, a “Meet the Crew” party, a parade of ships, The Morgan Cup Yacht Race, a Maritime Career Opportunity Expo, a burning of Benedict Arnold by costumed reenactors, a children’s fishing tournament, and the 6th annual “Chowder Challenge.”
2018 EVENT SCHEDULE
Wednesday, September 5th
Submarine Force Museum
One Crystal Lake Road, Groton
10 a.m. “Maritime Career Opportunities Expo”
An opportunity to introduce area high school students to marine trade jobs and careers.
Thursday, September 6th
Fort Trumbull, New London, CT
11 a.m. Official Welcoming Ceremony
6 p.m. – 9 p.m. “Swingin’ on the Pier” on Custom House Pier. Enjoy swing dancing lessons for one hour courtesy of Roger Orshal, Dance Instructor.
6 p.m. – 7 p.m. Swing dance lesson
7 p.m. – 9 p.m. Swing and dance with The Cartells
Friday, September 7th
New London Waterfront
10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Ship visitation begins on the Thames River.
10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sand Sculpture Building at Ocean Beach Park, 98 Neptune Avenue, New London. Free parking will be available.
11 a.m. Parade of Ships Begins along New London Waterfront.
1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Morgan Cup Race viewing at Ocean Beach
4 p.m. – 7 p.m. Captains and crews welcome party
Meet the captains & crews of our visiting ships & historic schooners at Hygienic Arts. Open to the public. $10 per person, cash bar.
8:30 p.m. Flock Theater presents “The Burning of Benedict Arnold” at City Pier.
Saturday, September 8th
Downtown New London, CT
10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Public ship visitation
11 a.m. – 3 p.m. “Great New London Chowder Challenge”
Restaurants from New London, New Haven and Bridgeport compete for the chowder bowl.
1 p.m. – 2 p.m. Maritime Fashion Show on Custom House Pier.
Time TBA – U.S. Coast Guard Search and Rescue Demonstration. Witness what a search and rescue
involving divers and a helicopter looks like up close.
2 p.m. – 9 p.m. “Music at the Fort” Americana Festival featuring Grammy Award Winning Performers at Fort Trumbull.
6 p.m. Navy ship private reception
Sunday, September 9th
Custom House Pier
9 a.m. – 10 a.m. Ecumenical Gospel Church Service on Custom House Pier under leadership Madry Temple.
10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Breakfast served on the pier with cooking by churches under leadership of Chef Jack Chaplin. Church choirs & bands to perform.
12 noon – 4 p.m. Ship visitation on New London waterfront.
12 noon – 4 p.m. Family Fishing Tournament
Fort Trumbull fishing pier.
For an updated listing of participating vessels for this year’s festival, click here.