The Damariscotta River Pirate Rendezvous, an annual event taking place in June for the past eight years, has been canceled for 2016, according to event director Greg Latimer. However, work is already underway for an improved and more sustainable event planned for June 2017.
“While the Pirate Rendezvous has always been successful in regard to both our audience and our fundraising, it has also always been a challenge due to the number of volunteers required to pull off a day-long event that covers the in-town areas of Damariscotta and Newcastle. For example, some 50 volunteers are required to staff the Kid’s Pirate Camp game area,” Latimer said.
“This year, 2016, it became apparent in the final stages of planning that we would be unable to muster the number of volunteers we would need to make the event successful for yet another year,” Latimer said.
According to Latimer, event organizers considered adjusting the event so that it might be smaller, and require less volunteers. However, the organizers were concerned that such changes would disappoint the audience, especially with only several months to develop them. “Instead, we came to the conclusion that we should cancel the 2016 Damariscotta River Pirate Rendezvous in favor of creating a new and improved event for 2017,” Latimer said.
A planning committee has been formed, including past supporters, event beneficiaries, and Lincoln County Spark, a group of local businesspeople. “Our objective is to create an event that can help open the summer season for in-town Damariscotta and Newcastle, with an appropriate plan to balance temporary local impact with benefit to area businesses, event beneficiaries, and thereby town residents,” Latimer said. “We’re looking forward to the fresh energy Lincoln County Spark will bring to this process.”
Even with the cancellation this year of the Damariscotta River Pirate Rendezvous, there will still be plenty of pirating in Lincoln County during the month of June.
On Saturday, June 18 at Colonial Pemaquid in Bristol, living history presenter and local author James Nelson will re-create the infamous pirate Dixie Bull who attacked and sacked Pemaquid in 1632. Shows will take place at 1 and 3 p.m. While this event is more a viewing than participation, all pirates will be welcome. For more information, call 677-6614. The rain date is Sunday, June 19.
Perhaps another option for pirate fans is Windjammer Days in Boothbay Harbor, where the Pirates of the Dark Rose will perform Tuesday, June 28 and Wednesday, June 29. This is the same pirate crew with the ship and cannon that has also performed at the Damariscotta River Pirate Rendezvous. For more information about Windjammer Days, go to windjammerdays.org.
For those with questions or comments about the Damariscotta River Pirate Rendezvous, Latimer may be reached by telephone at 380-9912 or firstname.lastname@example.org.