Thursday, October 4, 2012

Working Waterfront Festival -- Part 2

Mini Tugs
Sunday was still overcast with some rain, though the sun did come out eventually just as the festival was ending. None of that seemed to dampen enthusiasm. There were plenty of people making the rounds of the performance tents, the foodways tent (aka cooking demo tent),  the food tent (that's where you eat the food, not where they do the competitive cooking), and the booths.
Toot Toot
We took a closer look at the mini tugs that had caught our imagination yesterday. I kept trying to think of practical reasons why people would need to build such tiny tugboats: moving small barges in tight harbors, small lakes, canals ... Nope. When I talked with the builder of Atlantic Hunter, he told me it was "a guy thing" just for fun. It is amazing what you can do with plywood and epoxy. Several of the mini tug makers talked about the Waterford, NY Tugboat Roundup so we started planning a NY state vacation for next fall :)

One of the things I like about the festival is that the performers and authors mingle informally with the attendees and with each other. Over the years we've seen how they influence each other. The Johnson Girls sang a sea shanty they had learned from the Northern Neck Singers at a previous festival. The fisher poets all seem to ping off each other. As we walked from the mini tugs at State Pier over to Pier 3, I spotted a couple of the non-fiction authors chatting on board the Richard & Arnold.  That totally summarized the festival atmosphere for me.

Surf Clams
One of the boats open for visitors was a clammer with surf clams on display as well as closeup looks at their dredge. The Foodways area included several species of fish on ice in case you don't know what they look like before they hit your plate.

Yellowtail Flounder on Ice
While we were eating, I spotted Scott Brown making the rounds. His trademark barn coat fit right in with the general style of dress.

Thank goodness Scott Brown and Elizabeth Warren came on different days.

We made the rounds of the craft and non-profit booths then over to the main tent in time to hear the Johnson Girls, who seem to get better every time they come to the festival.

Johnson Girls
Our main goal for Sunday was, of course, to hear Ana Vinagre, New Bedford's and hence America's most renowned fado singer. They always save the headliner for last in the main tent. Of course the seafood throwdown and the finale of the fisherpoetry contest were also scheduled for that last slot at their respective tents. Our choice was clear! Ana Vinagre!

Standing Room Only for the Seafood Throwdown
There was standing room only at the Foodways tent for the seafood throwdown and an occasional cheer for one of the chefs drifted over to the main stage. Ana Vinagre was phenomenal -- and she sang Barco Negro especially for us as her daughter had told her about our conversation yesterday. Wow, Ana sang a request AND the sun came out. What a finale!

Ana Vinagre

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