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Posted on: August 31, 2023


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Date:               August 31, 2023
Contact:          Bonnie Farmer, Communications & Marketing Coordinator
                        410-326-2042, ext. 8067 Email:


FREE Family Fun for All Ages!

SOLOMONS, MD – August 31, 2023 – Patuxent River Appreciation Day (PRAD), one of Southern Maryland’s longest running festivals, celebrates its 45th year on Saturday, October 7, 2023 at the Calvert Marine Museum. All members of the family can enjoy the fun from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Museum admission is FREE all day.

This year’s event will feature a weekend’s-worth of fun, all in one day. Festivities include toy boat building, live music, boat rides, crafts, art vendors, and more! 

Enjoy grabbing a bite to eat from a variety of food vendors on site. Beer and wine will also be available for purchase.

Performers will entertain visitors with live music from the Motto Mortgage Preferred and RE/MAX One Waterside Pavilion throughout the day. Here is the complete lineup:

            SOMD Jazz Orchestra                                    11 a.m. – noon.

            Jay Armsworthy & the Eastern Tradition        12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

            Groove Span                                                   2 p.m. – 3 p.m.                        

            Bush Mill Band                                                3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.  

Explore the museum grounds to visit dozens of nonprofit and community groups that celebrate the Patuxent River in a variety of ways. There will be exhibits, demonstrations and displays about oyster farming, native plants, local wildlife, and more that help keep our area a wonderful place to live and play. Be sure to check out animal adoptions, live reptiles, petting zoo, and world-famous fossils during PRAD!

Head over to the Drum Point Lighthouse and surrounding boat basin for even more fun! Children can build their own toy boats, and the whole family is encouraged to enjoy free cruises aboard the Wm. B. Tennison, Witch of the Wave, Draketail, and Poe Skiff. Take a ride in a rowboat or pedal boat, or even try your hand at navigating a remote-control sailboat.

There’s more to discover inside the museum, with many exhibits offering additional interactive experiences for the day. Don’t forget to stop at the Museum Store to meet Axolotl Jack or to get a head start on holiday shopping with new and unique items that celebrate the Chesapeake Bay. Be sure to say hello to North American river otters Chessie Grace and Calvert during your visit.

PRAD brings together and reflects the continuing commitment of the community, Calvert County Board of County Commissioners, Calvert Marine Museum, and other organizations that share a desire to preserve the Patuxent River and to celebrate its positive influence on the area’s quality of life in the past, present, and future. By bringing these people together in a public forum, PRAD organizers hope to grow local support of the environmental programs and tourism activities surrounding the Patuxent River and its tributaries. PRAD would not be possible without the support of the Calvert County Board of County Commissioners.

Explore how the prehistoric past, natural environments, and maritime heritage come to life and tell a unique story of the Chesapeake Bay. The Calvert Marine Museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Admission is $11.00 for adults; $9.00 for seniors, military, and veterans with valid I.D, AAA and AARP members; $6.00 for children ages 5 - 12; children under 5 and museum members are admitted free. Proud participant in Museums for ALL. For more information about the museum, upcoming events, or membership, visit the website at or call 410-326-2042. Follow us on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.


Photo attached: 

Photo 1: PRAD 2022 guests enjoying Drum Point Lighthouse Boat Basin activities. Photo curtesy of Robert Hurry. 


Photo 2: Oyster tonging demonstration during PRAD 2022. Photo curtesy of Robert Hurry. 


Photo 3: Drum Point Lighthouse and boat basin during PRAD 2022. Photo curtesy of Robert Hurry.


Photo 4: Grove Span performing live during PRAD 2022. Photo curtesy of Robert Hurry.

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