40th Fishermen’s Festival - April 26, 27 and 28, 2013


Looking for Fishermen’s Festival 2014? Click here.

Here you will find our live feed, event results, schedule, select featured stories, photos, videos and more.

Check back throughout the weekend for updates and results.

At the festival? Send your photos to pix@boothbayregister.com!

Times are approximate and events subject to change

Pot Buoy Decorating: By age groups: young children and adults. Stop by The First, pick up your plain pot buoy, decorate it and drop it back off at the First in Boothbay Harbor. You’ll need to use your own supplies for the decorating. Buoys will be judged by the community downtown all weekend. Prizes awarded for different age groups. (Pot buoys are $5). This year we will hold a live auction for the pot buoys just before the Tug of War to raise money for the Fishermen’s Memorial.

MR. C’S FOOD & Spirit will have a pre-pageant menu with a choice of fried or Baked Haddock, Bake Stuffed Chicken Breast with wine sauce, char-grilled, 8 oz. Rib Eye steak (above served with choice of side or mixed green salad or spaghetti marinara with meatballs, vegetable Primavera with pasta) served with mixed green salad. Mr. C’s will also have its regular menu as well all weekend. A percentage of the proceeds will be being donated back to Fishermen’s Festival.

7 p.m. Shrimp Princess Pageant Boothbay Region High School. Young ladies between the ages of 9 and 12 participate and show us their fine talents. Admission: $5 adults and $2 children under 12. Tickets on sale at the door. Benefits the Fishermen’s Memorial Fund. 50/50 raffle with the winner announced during the pageant. Contact Brenda Blackman at 207-633-6280 or 207-633-5149.

9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Jehovah and the Holy Mackerels at McSeagull’s

6 a.m. Pancake Breakfast Boothbay Region Lions Club hall, Lakeview Road, West Boothbay Harbor. Pancakes, eggs, bacon, home fries. Tickets sold at the door.

7:30 a.m. Coffee and Doughnuts On sale at the Waterfront during morning events by Project Graduation.

8 a.m. Cod Fish Relay Race Four person teams of the Boothbay Region High School run a course beginning at the public parking lot (adjacent to Fisherman’s Wharf Inn) dressed in foul weather gear, including hip boots and carrying slippery fish. Contact Kathleen Pearce at 207-687-6677. Maximum: 15 persons.

8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Events for the children in Fisherman’s Wharf parking lot. Lots of fun stuff for all ages. Kids games, face painting, bounce house for kids and other fun things as well. Jump roping and hula hooping for all ages. Chaired by Sarah Jo Barter.

Immediately following: Small Fry Cod Fish Relay Race Boothbay Region Elementary School Students grades five through eight. Contact Kathleen Pearce at 207-687-6677.

Approx. 8:15 a.m. Coming back this year: Bait Shoveling Race. Contact Ryan Casey at 207-380-3166.

8:45 a.m. Trap Hauling Competition Race begins at the town dock, where competing lobster boats tie up. Captain and Sternman race down the ramp, untie their boats and speed toward the string of traps in the inner harbor to haul, bait and reset their traps, return to the dock and race up the ramp, trying to turn the fastest time. Contact Mark Carter 207-633-5762.

9 a.m. to 12 p.m. CLICK will be doing the Chalk Art on Boothbay House Hill.

9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Arts and Crafts Show The Boothbay Harbor Fire Department, 11 Howard Street. Over 50 crafters participate in this fabulous craft show. Contact Vicki Huskins at 207- 633-2404.

9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Blood Pressure Clinic Courtesy Boothbay Region Ambulance at the Boothbay Harbor Fire Department, 11 Howard Street.

9:45 a.m. Lobster Crate Running Participants will demonstrate their agility in running along the tops of the lobster crates strung out between the two town docks. Contact Brandy Pottle at 207-633-2045 or 207-380-5169. Limit 15 contestants.

11:15 a.m. Tug of War competition at the Waterfront. Ten men, women or co-ed teams vie for championships. Lively, spirited competition. Get your teams together to do a business to business challenge. Contact Sarah Barter at 207-380-7722 or Ashlee Lowery at 207-633-3913.

Small Fry Tug of War competition immediately following (3rd and 4th graders) Contact Kathleen Pearce at 207-687-6677.

10 a.m. Bubble Gum Contest for the youngsters in the Fisherman’s Wharf Parking Lot.

11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fish Fry at Pier 1/Mine Oyster. All proceeds to benefit Fishermen’s Memorial Fund. Fish sandwiches served inside until they are gone.

1-3 p.m. Oyster ShuckingContest at Mine Oyster (different categories for competition and everyone that enters gets a prize).

12-3 p.m. In the raw bar of Mine Oyster; Three oysters paired with tastes of great wines.

1-9 p.m. Geary’s Draft Beer specials at all events at Mine Oyster and Mcseagull’s, dinner and drinks at McSeagull’s. Come on over and enjoy the food. A percentage of the proceeds with be donated back to Fishermen’s Memorial.

2-5 p.m. Entertainment at Robinson's Wharf. School Street Band. Part of the proceeds from our Buckets of Beer & Draft Specials during this time will be donated to the Fishermen's Memorial Fund.

5 p.m. Church Supper Congregational Church, Townsend Avenue, Boothbay Harbor. Two seatings: 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. Fabulous home cooking with great desserts. 207-633-4757.

9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Saturday Night at Mine Oyster: The Jason Spooner Band.

9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Saturday Night at McSeagull’s: Jehovah and the Holy Mackerels.

SUNDAY, April 28
BLOODY MARY MORNING at Mine Oyster hosted by Waldo Stone Farm, try drink specials including lobster martinis and Geary’s beer specials all day. Opens at 9 a.m.

12 p.m. Burnt Island Lighthouse Tour. Board the Novelty at Pier 8. Scenic cruise to Burnt Island to spend an hour touring the island and lighthouse buildings. The coordinator will talk about the lighthouse’s history and significance to our region. On the return, the Novelty will be watching the blessing of the fleet service in the inner harbor. Space limited to 75, tickets must be purchased in advance. Advance tickets available Monday-Friday at The First NA Oak Street Boothbay Harbor Maine. 207-633-5149. Adults $10, children (under 6) $5. Remaining tickets available at 11:30 a.m. at Pier 8, first come/first served basis.

1:30 p.m. Memorial Service Outdoor at the Fishermen’s Memorial on Atlantic Avenue (East Side of the Harbor across from Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church) in honor of area fishermen lost at sea. As the bells toll, the names of the lost fishermen will be read.

2:15 p.m. Blessing of the Fleet Blessing of the commercial fishing fleet. Fishing boats circle the inner harbor and pass the Fishermen’s Memorial to receive the blessing for a safe and profitable year. The Miss Shrimp Princess and area clergy are in attendance.

Grab a drink and watch the Blessing of the Fleet from the Fisherman’s Memorial on the East Side, or from the Deck of McSeagull’s, Mine Oyster or the deck of Knot Gray’s.

3 p.m. TALL TALES RETURNS (After the Blessing of the Fleet): Come over to Mine Oyster at Pier 1 as Tall Tales makes a triumphant return! Hear the stories as only the fishermen can tell them. Local characters Rusty Court and Doug Gimbel return to host the infamous event. Anyone willing to spin a good tale could win a prize.

Don’t miss all the adventures, and wacky humor as debauchery ensues. Keep in mind this event is for adults only, so book the babysitter and come on down and mingle with the fishermen. Exclusive this year: Local beer maker Boothbay Craft Brewery will unveil their newest beer on tap during Tall Tales. Come have a pint of cheer, and lots of fun.

For a printable PDF of the Fishermen’s Festival guide, published by the Boothbay Register, click here.

The ramp after collapsing. MIKE SCARBOROUGH/Boothbay Register

Hundreds of Fishermen's Festival spectators were startled when a ramped walkway connecting the pier to the boardwalk collapsed under the weight of crowds gathering in the Boothbay Harbor waterfront, April 27. The collapse is viewable in the timelapse video of the day's events.

Just minutes before the incident occurred, children were seen playing underneath the ramp. No one was injured when the ramp collapsed, but many spectators said they were spooked.

Moments before the accident, Lynn Blake of Boothbay said she was standing beneath the ramp with her husband and daughter. Blake said she left the area to register her daughter into the crate running competition, then walked up the ramp to the boardwalk. Two minutes later she heard a loud crack and people screaming.

“I freaked out and I started going towards the rail,” Blake said. “I'm pretty sure I pushed a few people out of the way. That kind of motherly instinct kicks in.”

GARY DOW/Boothbay Register

Father Fred Morse and Rev. Sarah Foulger bless lobsterman Clive Farrin's boat, the Sea Swallow, as it passes by.

The blessing is performed following the outside memorial service held at the Fishermen's Memorial on Atlantic Avenue to honor those lost at sea.

Daisuke Miyagawa celebrates after downing his second lobster. BEN BULKELEY/Boothbay Register

Boothbay Harbor's Fishermen's Festival is no stranger to strangers. Every year, people from different communities, different states and different countries attend the weekend-long event.

The 2013 Fishermen's Festival was no different, albeit with a unique visitor.

Daisuke Miyagawa participated in several of the events during the 40th annual Fishermen's Festival, where the Japanese entertainer tested his might against local competitors.

Miyagawa is the host of Nippon TV's “Sekai no hate made Itte Q,” or “Quest at the End of the World.”


Donald Duncan handily won the Tall Tale competition held at Mine Oyster in Boothbay Harbor as the 40th Fishermen's Festival came to a close.

Duncan recited from memory a 12-minute poem of epic proportions entitled, "The Night Charlie Tended Weir."


The 40th annual Fishermen’s Festival is looking for seaworthy storytellers.

Drop anchor at Mine Oyster in Boothbay Harbor for Tall Tales on Sunday, April 28 at 3 p.m., for drinks, tales and prizes for those who are 21 or over. Every storyteller has a chance to win a prize:

$65 About Face
$100 Newagen Inn gift certificate
$50 Sherman's gift certificate
“Maine” bracelet from Silver Linings
$35 China by the Sea gift certificate
Lobster Bake Dinner for 2 at Newagen Inn
$25 Oak Street Provisions gift certificate
$10 Ebb Tide gift certificate

Plus more! 

Hosted by Doug Gimbel and Rusty Court. Event sponsors are www.boothbayregister.com and www.wiscassetnewspaper.com

Plus, Boothbay Craft Brewery will unveil its newest brew for $5/glass.

For more info, call Ryan or Nicole at 207-633-4620

A total of 772 fish sandwiches were sold in three hours; then we sold just fish baskets with no buns.

Customers ate seven cases potato chips (25 pounds to a case) and two large cases of pickles.

People waited in line up to 30 minutes, due to the line being from the door of Mine Oyster upstairs to Pier 1 Pizza.

At the waterfront, we sold out of 175 pounds of French fries and 13 gallons of fish chowder.

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