Tall Ships Festival on The Delaware River

The Tall Ships Festival docked at Penns Landing (and Camden, NJ) on Thursday, June 25th. Numerous tall ships and the world’s largest rubber duck sailed up the Delaware River on Thursday afternoon before docking at various spots on both sides of the river.

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The ships, which stayed through Sunday, June 28th, drew large crowds of boat enthusiasts on each of the four days. Despite the fact that the Tall Ships were supposed to be the main draw, the gigantic rubber duck seemed to be the thing that most people were excited to see. Unfortunately it suffered a large tear on it’s trek up the river on Thursday during the Parade of Sails, that kept the 61 foot duck in the repair shop for the rest of the weekend.

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The damaged duck aside, large crowds filled the piers on both sides of the river to board the tall ships, listen to live music, play games, ride a Ferris wheel, eat, and experience various forms of entertainment. Some of the ships also offered 90 minute day sails that allowed those aboard to get out on the Delaware river instead of just viewing the docked ships.

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In addition, festival goers also flocked to various nearby attractions including Spruce Street Harbor Park, Blue Cross Riverrink Summer Fest, The Adventure Aquarium, Independence Seaport Museum, and the Battleship New Jersey.

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All in all, 16 tall ships participated in the festival, and each had quite a long line of people anxious to board them when we arrived for our second day on Friday, June 26th. As was the case over most of the region on Saturday, heavy rain and strong winds made for a rather miserable day and forced the festival to postpone the Saturday night fireworks until the final night of the festival on Sunday.

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The four day event concluded on Sunday, under much better weather conditions, with the aforementioned fireworks show. The Tall Ships Festival was a great excuse to get outside for some fresh air, to view some history, and to have some fun in the sun with friends and family. We only wish that Mama Duck had been on hand to enjoy it with all of the humans.

[Photo credit: D. Jacob Miller Photography]

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