Down­rig­ging Week­end to fea­ture lighted boat pa­rade

Kent County News - - NEWS - By DO­RIAN MITCHELL dmitchell@thekent­coun­tynews.com

— This year’s Down­rig­ging Week­end will have a new fea­ture to go along with the tall ships, wooden boats and fes­tiv­i­ties in Chestertown: a lighted boat pa­rade.

The 17th an­nual fes­ti­val will be held Fri­day, Oct. 27 through Sun­day, Oct. 29.

Speak­ing Mon­day, Sul­tana Ed­u­ca­tion Foun­da­tion Pres­i­dent Drew McMullen said the foun­da­tion has wanted to do a lighted pa­rade for years.

“We just haven’t had the re­sources to ac­tu­ally do it,” he said. “It’ll be a fun way for peo­ple who don’t have wooden boats or tall ships to be in­volved in the week­end.”

McMullen said the pa­rade line-up will be­gin at 6:45 p.m. Fri­day, Oct. 27, near the in­ter­sec­tion of High and South Lynch­burg streets. It will start at 7 p.m. and make its way down­town. It will end at the foot of High Street at about 7:30 p.m., in time for the fes­ti­val’s fire­works over the Ch­ester River.

A $1,000 prize will be bro­ken down for the win­ners of the three catagories. Those who come in first place for the “Most Orig­i­nal” and “Most Twin­kle for the Buck” will re­ceive $250, while first place in the “Kolos­sal Kilo­watt” cat­e­gory will re­ceive the grand prize of $500.

“This is the first time we’ve ever done this, so it’ll be a great start if we get five or six boats,” McMullen said. “If you have Christ­mas lights and a jon boat, this won’t be a big deal at all.”

McMullen said the foun­da­tion has been send­ing out no­tices to var­i­ous or­ga­ni­za­tions. He said there al­ready has been in­ter­ested feed­back.

“(The Town of) Chestertown likes this idea and has been noth­ing but sup­port­ive,” McMullen said. “With­out them, we couldn’t even be­gin to make it work.”

He said the dead­line to en­ter the Down­rig­ging lighted boat pa­rade will be a few days be­fore Oct. 27. This year’s fes­ti­val also will cel­e­brate the Sul­tana Ed­u­ca­tion Foun­da­tion’s 20th an­niver­sary.

“I’m ex­cited. It’s re­ally go­ing to be awe­some,” McMullen said.

To view the rules or to reg­is­ter for the pa­rade, visit www.sul­tanae­d­u­ca­tion.org/ pub­lic- pro­grams/ sul­tana­pub­lic-sails/ down­rig­ging­week­end-2/sum­mer­wind.

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