Free family fun. That's the theme for this year's Blessing of the Fleet event held this Saturday at Mercer Park.
"We're trying to make this a family event," said Becky Kishtok, chairperson for the Greater Baldwinsville Chamber of Commerce event. "Everything this year is no cost."
Kishtok said the chamber decided to scale the event down, changing it from an all day event to a Saturday morning full of activities for families and community members including classic kids events such as wheel barrel, three legged and potato sack races.
"This is a fun way to spend a Saturday morning," she said.
The day begins with the Kids Fishing Derby (held from 9 to 10:30 a.m.). Registration begins 8:15 a.m., and the first 50 kids to register will receive free fishing poles and bait, courtesy of the Baldwinsville Kiwanis and the chamber. Children from 4 to 12 years old can compete for several prizes, as well.
At 11 a.m., the Seneca River Sprintz event begins. Participants can bring their kayak or canoe to race against others one mile down the Seneca River and back for a chance at some fun prizes
Last year's popular Blessing of the Pets returns for its second year with local radio station hosts judging the event. From 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., pet owners can bring their furry and feathered family members to the park, have them blessed and then participate in a pet parade.
The event culminates with the Blessing of the Fleet from 1 to 2 p.m. along the Seneca River. All boaters and watercrafts are encouraged to start the season with a blessing for safe travels and adventures on the water.
"This is going to be a great day - a good time to spend with your family and your community," Kishtok said.