Annapolis during July 4th - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Destinations > Chesapeake / Central US east coast > Chesapeake Bay
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Old 06-21-2011
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Annapolis during July 4th

First off, if this is a redundant post my apologies in advance; just point me to a link and it will be much appreciated.

We are considering spending the 4th in Annapolis on the water. We would sail up from Herring Bay.

Any advice on where to anchor? Does Annapolis have a decent 4th fireworks display? is it crazy busy then (like October and the boat show?) Any advice to keep us out of hot water and make the trip enjoyable and fun would be appreciated.

I do have the 2010 Bay Cruising Guide (the spiral bound one). But I was looking for first hand experience and knowledge from the locals.

Any advice or ideas much appreciated.

Thanks in advance,
Bob M.
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Old 06-21-2011
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Yes to both: there's usually a pretty nice fireworks display, and its crazy-busy in the harbor. People anchor all over the harbor and Severn R, starting in the afternoon, for the fireworks, which happen off the Naval Academy. Where to anchor? Whereever you can! The only advice I could give, is - don't anchor anywhere near a channel or trafficway - remember people are going to be coming back after dark and often after drinking. One year we counted more than 100 boats coming up Back Creek after the show ... and about 1/3 of them were improperly lit.
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Old 06-21-2011
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You're brave Unfortunately it really brings out the idiots. If you could get a mooring or a slip in Annapolis you wold be fine, or find a spot to anchor far from any channel.

Its been a while since I've been to Annapolis for the show but I always remember them being good. I wonder how they would be from Weems Creek or East of Horseshoe Point?

I'll give a shout out for Solomons Island for fireworks! Some of the best I can recall. Take a slip at Spring Cove Marina and dingy over to the boardwalk for a great show.
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Old 06-22-2011
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Annapolis has great fireworks which brings out a huge number of people. We've been part of that crowd on more than one occassion. Some advice: get there early. Since the Fourth falls on a Monday, you might find that getting there a day or 2 ahead would insure you have a good spot. Best thing would be to snag a mooring in front of the academy. They're cheap enough that it wouldn't be too much of an expense and the peace of mind that your boat won't drag into someone else while you are ashore is worth it anyway. One time we came back to the boat to find another boat wrapped around her having dragged into us. There was some scrapes and a bent stanchion which the other guys insurance paid for. It was a downer though. There are a lot of waves out in the river from passing boats which might dislodge your anchor. But it still is an awesome experience! You just have to know the risks.

Where to anchor: Anchor off the Naval Academy seawall if you can't get a mooring. The city will place bouys marking out the keep clear area for the fireworks barge. the hard part is figuring out where those lines are if there are a lot of boats there when you arrive. If you are in the keep out area you will be asked to leave. If the wind makes an unpridicted shift, the keep out area will be adjusted accordingly. You will need to keep a fairway open parallel to the seawall for the tour boats to go out to the river as well. It will be somewhat rough depending upon weather and boat traffic.

Most boats leave afterwards. That can be very scary!! Most of those operators are undoubtably inebriated that makes it risky. We've always stayed put through the night. Waking up to the sounds of the cadets ex resizing on the parade deck is pretty cool. They sound off and chant as they exercise. The parade of floats that winds it's way through the Academy before the fireworks is cool but hokie.

Doing the Fourth at Annapolis is a cool thing but it is not an original idea. You will find that the river gets full of anchored boats all the way out to the Bay. The key to a fun time is to get there early to get a spot to anchor or grab a mooring. Do it before it gets too crowded. Then, particularly if anchored, don't spend too much time away from the boat so you can keep people from anchoring too close. Make sure you have proper lights and that your papers are in order as the harbor is crawling with police and coasties.

Have a good time.

Tod
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Old 06-22-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gladrags1 View Post
Where to anchor: Anchor off the Naval Academy seawall if you can't get a mooring. The city will place bouys marking out the keep clear area for the fireworks barge. the hard part is figuring out where those lines are if there are a lot of boats there when you arrive. If you are in the keep out area you will be asked to leave. If the wind makes an unpridicted shift, the keep out area will be adjusted accordingly. You will need to keep a fairway open parallel to the seawall for the tour boats to go out to the river as well. It will be somewhat rough depending upon weather and boat traffic.
From the 3rd week June USCG Notices....

23. Severn River and Spa Creek, within an area bounded by a line drawn from 38°58′39.6″ N, 076°28′49″ W, thence to
38°58′41″ N, 076°28′14″ W, thence to 38°59′01″ N, 076°28′37″ W, thence to 38°58′57″ N, 076°28′40″ W, located near the
entrance to Spa Creek in Annapolis, Maryland. This safety zone will be enforced on July 4, 2011, from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
(with a rain date of July 5, 2011) for a fireworks display scheduled for 9 p.m. Chart 12283.

Fireworks barges and launch sites on land will have signs labeled FIREWORKS--DANGER--STAY AWAY to provide on scene
notice that the safety zone will be enforced. Vessels may not enter, remain in, or transit through the safety zone during the
enforcement period unless authorized by the Coast Guard Captain of the Port (COTP) or designated Coast Guard patrol
personnel on scene. All persons and vessels shall comply with the instructions of the COTP or the designated on-scene-patrol
personnel, and upon being hailed by siren, radio, flashing light or other means, the operator of a vessel shall proceed as
directed. Other Federal, State and local agencies may assist these personnel in the enforcement of the safety zone. For any
comments or questions, contact Coast Guard Sector Baltimore Waterways Management Division, at (410) 576-2674, (410) 576-
2693 or Ronald.L.Houck@uscg.mil.
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Old 06-22-2011
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If you don't mind watching from a bit of a distance consider anchoring in Whitehall Bay. It's relatively quiet and doesn't get the crowd that drinks heavily and then goes home without nav lights running a spot light all the way.

Give the red on the way in a respectful berth as you turn East toward the anchorage area.
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Old 06-22-2011
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Good advice from Dave on Whitehall Bay ( pat on the head).....when we watch Annapolis firewords thats where we go...the giant raftup in Annapolis harbor is like demolition derby performed by drunks.

Dave
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