May 20, 2024
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Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum to Host Chesapeake Bay Week Film Festival

The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum is partnering with Maryland Public Television for a series of film screenings in the Van Lennep Auditorium next month in celebration of the 20th anniversary of MPT’s Chesapeake Bay Week.

The Chesapeake Bay Week Film Festival kicks off Saturday, April 13 at 2pm, with a showing of the new MPT film “Racing Rivals: Log Canoes of Chesapeake Bay.” Afterward, there will be a panel discussion, moderated by CBMM’s Chief Historian and log canoe racer Pete Lesher, featuring skippers, crew, and log canoe enthusiasts sharing stories of this unique Bay tradition. While this program has reached capacity, you can join a waitlist and get more information at

On Thursday, April 18 at 5:30pm, the MPT documentary “Water’s Edge: Black Watermen of the Chesapeake” will be in the spotlight, highlighting stories of bravery and resilience in an industry packed with African American pioneers. Register and learn more at

There is a suggested donation of $10 per guest for these public screenings.

“We are proud to share these special previews of programming for Chesapeake Bay Week,” said Lesher, a regular contributor to MPT’s programming. “We supported MPT in the creation of both of these films on aspects of Chesapeake Bay culture with images from the CBMM archives and with our staff expertise.”

Both films will be featured on MPT during Chesapeake Bay Week, which this year runs April 21-27.

With its annual celebration of our nation’s largest estuary, MPT invites viewers to dive deep into the Bay’s rich history through the inspiring stories of the people who call it home.This edition features more than 22 hours of Bay-focused programming, with even more compelling content available for streaming through the free PBS App. More information, including a full schedule, is available at

Premiering on MPT on Monday, April 22 at 8pm and repeating Saturday, April 27 at 8pm, “Racing Rivals: Log Canoes of Chesapeake Bay” introduces the sailors and racing enthusiasts keeping a centuries-old Eastern Shore tradition alive through exhilarating weekend regattas.

“Log canoe racing is a unique Maryland tradition,” Producer/Director Sarah Sampson said. “For those unfamiliar with the sport, the term may evoke an image of crude dugouts; a notion that couldn’t be further from the truth. Chesapeake Bay log canoes are elegant, fast, and–at times–perilous. Maryland Public Television is excited to introduce viewers to this historic fleet of racing sailboats and the people keeping the heritage alive through weekend regattas.” 

First broadcast last spring during Chesapeake Bay Week, “Water’s Edge: Black Watermen of the Chesapeake” explores previously untold tales of industry trailblazers, including an ambitious steamboat captain who revolutionized recreation for Black Marylanders in the early 20th century, a pair of renowned sailmakers from Chestertown, and innovative present-day captains who are surviving by shifting their businesses to meet a changing market. This year, the film will air on MPT on Monday, April 22 at 8:30pm and Saturday, April 27 at 10pm.

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