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The Blessing of the Fleet at New Bern Grand Marina

Published on 4/20/16 4:50 PM
One of the traditions that kicks off each new boating season is the Blessing of the Fleet. It is thought that this tradition originated centuries ago in the Mediteranean, where it was common practice to bless boats to ensure safe passage and a bountiful season. To this day, boating communities across the U.S. and in Europe continue to observe this tradition at the beginning of each season. Much like the Burning of the Socks, each celebration has its own day of programming and traditions, with everything from Catholic mass and pageantry to contests and – our personal favorite – boat parades.

Thank you to the New Bern Grand Marina for sharing their event with us! To have your marina's Blessing of the Fleet featured in the Dockwa Boater blog, email becky@dockwa.com.


The Blessing of the Fleet at New Bern Grand Marina

The Cape Lookout Sail and Power Squadron and the New Bern Yacht Club have joined forces to co-sponsor the New Bern Grand Marina and Yacht Club annual Blessing of the Fleet on Saturday, May 7, 2016. The ceremony will be held dockside at The New Bern Grand Marina at 11:00 am, with Matt Englebrecht of WITN Channel 6 as Master of Ceremonies. Bagpipes will signal the Presentation of Colors. Boats will be individually blessed at the dock, and an Honor Boat will launch to place a wreath on the Neuse River.

The New Bern Grand Marina has offered free docking from 10am - 4pm on May 7 to all participants of the Blessing of the Fleet along the "G" dock. Following the ceremony, a buffet lunch will be offered to all participants and guests ($15.00 per person).

Immediately after lunch, an honor boat will take a floral wreath out on the Neuse River, where the wreath will be placed in the waters of the Neuse. Boaters and their guests are invited to join a procession of boats accompanying the honor boat to observe the laying of the wreath.

Get involved!

To participate in the Blessing of the Fleet, RSVP to Bill McHale (bmchale@aol.com) or Neal Byrne (nrbii@yahoo.com) by Friday, April 29th with your boat name, LOA and beam. Boats of all types and size are encouraged to participate. In addition, quests are also welcome to come by "Land Yacht" to participate in the ceremony and luncheon. Boaters currently docked at the New Bern Grand Marina Yacht Club who desire to have the blessing come to their slip may contact Bill McHale directly at (304) 541-8321 to make arrangements.

Extend your stay

Wishing your could spend the night or weekend? Simply book your New Bern Grand Marina reservation on Dockwa and indicate that you are participating in the Blessing of the Fleet event.

More in store

In addition to the Blessing of the Fleet event, the Cape Lookout Sail & Power Squadron will be offering free vessel safety inspections, dockside at the New Bern Grand Marina prior to the ceremony in the morning and in the afternoon following the ceremony.

For more information, contact Millissa True: (252) 633-6070, millissa@newberngrandmarinayachtclub.com


Post by Becky Pineo

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