Two-day event celebrates river

Solomons, MD – One of the many tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay—the largest and longest river entirely within the State of Maryland—is the subject of a weekend-long celebration Saturday, Oct. 10 and Sunday, Oct. 11.

The annual Patuxent River Appreciation Days (PRAD) are geared to create awareness and promote the enormous impact the river has had. Solomons would appear to be the ideal location for such an event. The river, which begins in an area in north central Maryland where four counties (Howard, Frederick, Montgomery and Carroll) intersect, becomes quite majestic as it reaches its confluence with the Chesapeake Bay.

The many PRAD events are held at Calvert Marine Museum (CMM) in Solomons. Five regional businesses will conduct wine tasting at Corbin Pavilion. Attendees may enjoy free boat rides on the Wm. B. Tennison, Nathan of Dorchester and Dee of St. Mary’s.

Other PRAD activities include boat building, live music, pony rides, face-painting, canoe rides, demonstrations, arts and crafts show, and plenty of food.
“This is a ‘rain or shine’ event,” CMM’s Melissa McCormick told The BayNet, adding that “close to 10,000 people” are anticipated for PRAD should the weather be sunny.

According to McCormick, PRAD will feature approximately 40 environmental exhibits and about the same number of arts and crafts exhibitors.
Free parking will be available to PRAD attendees in Glascock Field, across Route 2 from CMM. There is also some free parking available on Solomons Island. McCormick reminds attendees not to park in business parking lots, including Patuxent Plaza Shopping Center.

PRAD’s sponsors are the Calvert Board of County Commissioners, CMM, Arick L. Lore Post American Legion, Calvert County Waterman’s Association and the Pa-Po-Peake Shrine Club. The latter organization plays a huge role in the popular PRAD Parade that is scheduled for Sunday afternoon. The parade features various organizations, marching, and riding floats and a variety of vehicles. The event always draws spectators.

Another traditional occurrence at PRAD is the Calvert County Environmental Commission’s “Pump for the Bay” contest for Calvert residents whose homes are serviced by individual septic systems. To participate, pump out or upgrade your septic tank to qualify to win cash or other great prizes. Entries must be received by the Calvert County Department of Community Planning and Building no later than Thursday, Oct. 8. The drawing will be held during the Calvert County Environmental Commission’s October meeting. The grand prize is a one-night stay for two at the Holiday Inn Select in Solomons.

The contest, in its 11th year, is held as a way to encourage nutrient nitrogen reduction. To find out more about “Pump for the Bay” visit

To find out more about PRAD visit

Contact Marty Madden at

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