The boats on display at the Antique & Classic Boat Show always turn heads. Photo: CBMM

Fishing-Themed Antique & Classic Boat Festival Motors into St. Michaels

It’s a Father’s Day weekend tradition: the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum’s (CBMM) Antique & Classic Boat Festival. This weekend will mark the 36th running of the festival. In recent years, however, the name has become a little longer—it’s now known as the Antique & Classic Boat Festival and Coastal Arts Fair.

The added Coastal Arts Fair is a juried fair showcasing vendors whose wares celebrate boating and life on and around the water. It’s a perfect complement to the beautifully varnished classic boats on display.

This year’s antique boat show carries the theme “It’s All About Fishing,” bringing together the owners of vintage sport boats and commercial fishing boats. Expect to see Boston Whaler, Chris-Craft, Rybovich, Hatteras, Lyman, and Egg Harbor classics on CBMM’s Miles River campus.

All told, the festival includes more than 100 cruisers, runabouts and racers in wood, fiberglass and metal. Visitors can meet the boats’ owners who have the boats in various states of restoration. Boat classes include historic (up to 1918), antique (1919-1942), classic (1943-1975), late classic (1976-1997), and contemporary (any wooden boat built since 1997).

Hosted by the Chesapeake Bay Chapter of the Antique & Classic Boat Society, this nostalgic festival is one of the largest classic boat shows on the East Coast.

Along with boats on display, there will be 11 seminars on Friday and Saturday including one titled “Chasing Crabs & Rockfish, Tonging Oysters–The Chesapeake Motor Deadrise from 1900 to 2000” and another intriguing talk called “Hemingway to Hepburn: How America ‘Invented’ Sportfishing (and Sportfishermen Boats).” Find the full list here:

Children’s activities will be available along with free boat rides and a nautical flea market.

The show runs Friday through Sunday, June 14-16, beginning at 10 a.m. all three days. It’s rain or shine. To buy tickets and get more information, visit