FAIRFIELD, Conn. – The 2014 Southport Blessing of the Fleet will kick off Saturday, June 14, with a parade starting at 11 a.m.
The Southport Street Parade will leave from the Southport Congregational Church parking lot on Pequot Avenue and end at Southport's Lower Wharf, where the Blessing of the Fleet will take place at about noon.
Before the parade and fleet blessing, Eagle Hill School at 214 Main St. will serve a pancake breakfast starting at 8:30 a.m.
The march will feature five fife-and-drum corps and one pipe band, the Governor's Horse Guard, various federal, state and local officials, and a delegation from the Pequot Library.
Greg and Lori Peck, owners of Spic and Span Market, will be the grand marshals of this year’s parade. Spic and Span Market has been a Southport institution since 1928. This is the Peck’s 30th anniversary as owners.
In addition to the bands, there will also be classic cars provided by the Connecticut Seaport Car Club.
Steve Galpin – past commodore of the Pequot Yacht Club – initiated the local Blessing of the Fleet in Southport Harbor nearly 22 years ago.
About 50 vessels are expected to pass by the Lower Wharf during the ceremony. The boats will be blessed by Revs. Leslie C. Smith and Dawn Stegelmann of Trinity Episcopal Church, the Revs. Laura and Paul Whitmore of Southport Congregational Church and Deacon Daniel Ianiello of St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church.