Baldwinsville Chamber presents annual Blessing of the Fleet
Kick off the boating season this weekend with Baldwinsville's Blessing of the Fleet.
The Greater Baldwinsville Chamber of Commerce has organized several events for this annual celebration including a new function, the Blessing of the Pets, and a commemoration of Lock 24's 100th anniversary.
"There are many communities around the world who have a blessing of the pets event," said Roberta Cifaratta of the chamber. "It is a way for us to recognize the importance of our pet companions in our lives."
Held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday evening at Paper Mill Island, community members are invited to bring their pets to the island for a blessing and parade, followed by a pet show and prizes. The Rev. Joseph McGarry will conduct the blessing both Friday for the pets and Saturday afternoon (from 2 to 3:30 p.m.) for the blessing of boats along Lock 24.
"Pastor McGarry really enjoys being a part of Baldwinsville," Cifaratta said. "He especially enjoys being a part of community events like the Blessing of the Fleet. Events like this show our community that the spirit is alive and open to everyone."
In an effort to honor the 100th anniversary of Lock 24, The Rev. McGarry will also lead a celebration service prior to the blessing of the boats.
The weekend celebration begins Thursday with the Chamber Golf Tournament at Timber Banks. Registration is $105 per person and includes captain-and-crew format, greens fees, a cart, lunch, dinner and beverages. Contests will include the longest drive, closest to the pin, putting contest, a skins game and more.
The annual kid's fishing derby will be held from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday at Mercer Park where children from 5 to 12 years old can angle for Sunfish, Bluegills, bass and bullheads competing for prizes for the biggest and smallest fish. Registration begins at 8:15 a.m. and the first 50 children will receive a free fishing pole. The Baldwinsville Kiwanis sponsor the event donating prizes and poles for the children. The Baldwinsville Police Department will also provide children's safety information for parents during the derby.