Batten down the Hatches!
Pirates are Landing at the Yorktown Waterfront!
Ye are invited to travel back to the Golden Age of Piracy as Riverwalk Landing and the Watermen’s Museum are invaded by seafaring marauders on April 27 & 28 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will be hands-on activities and interactive programs for lads and lasses of all ages. Explore a pirate encampment, attend pirate school, and witness a pirate trial! Sing along to sea shanties and witness cannon demonstrations.
Tall Ships Spotted at Riverwalk Landing
Guests can test their Sea Legs when they sail the waters of the York River with Captain Mayhem on his Pirate Adventure Cruise! He’s always looking for pint-sized recruits to help raise the sails, tie knots and steer the ship. No worries. He hasn’t forced anyone to walk the plank… yet. While the Pirate event itself is free, all sails aboard the Schooner Alliance require paid tickets. The number to call for reservations is 1-888-316-6422. Kid-friendly pirate cruises run both Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m. with a more adult focused sail at 2 p.m.
The visiting Schooner Virginia will also be docked at the pier all weekend. The tall ship will make its voyage from Norfolk to Yorktown for the public to step aboard and learn the history of the magnificent vessel. The Virginia is a reproduction of the last all sail vessel built for the Virginia Pilot Association. The original ship sailed for pilots from 1917-1926, training apprentices in seamanship and navigation. The ship will be open for free deck tours from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, April 26. During the weekend, tours will also run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
X” Marks the Spot
Treasure Hunt for Landlubbers
Children will have the opportunity to collect coins, jewels, eye patches, and other booty at various businesses and attractions in a town-wide Treasure Hunt. Parents are asked to check in at the Freight Shed to collect a treasure map where “X” marks the spot at Watermen’s Gift Shop, Patriot Tours & Provisions, Viccellio Goldsmith, Yorktown Bookshop, Auntie M’s American Cottage, Schooner Virginia, the Gallery at York Hall, and Mobjack Bay Coffee Roasters. Kids can keep their treasures as souvenirs of the event.
Ahoy, Me Hearties
Social Media Pirate Costume Contest
Our second annual pirate costume will take place on Visit Yorktown’s Facebook page. You and your families are encouraged to dress in costume and upload your pictures in the comments of the “pinned post” that weekend. We received some pretty creative entries last year and look forward to this year’s entries. Qualifying backdrops include: dock entrance (in front of Schooner banner), on the piers or Riverwalk with the ships in the background, in front of Patriot Tours & Provisions, in front of the Water Street Grille fountain, or anywhere at the Watermen’s Museum. One child and one adult entry will be selected as winners. For the younger mate—the grand prize is a Pirate Adventure Cruise ticket (with an accompanying adult ticket), provided by Yorktown Sailing Charters. The two tickets may be redeemed through the end of the sailing season. The adult costume contest winner will get a 1-hour complimentary Segway tour from Patriot Tours & Provisions to learn the history of Yorktown in a new way!
Arrr Ye Hungry?
Grub for Starving Sailors & Scallywags
All Historic Yorktown restaurants will be open, and in the spirit of the event, Yorktown Market Days will run until 3 p.m. with several food truck options including Kathi's Clam Chowder, Boyd's Tasty Dogs, and Fish Food by Uncle Russ. Riverwalk Restaurant will be taking walk-ins. Carrot Tree will have several grab-and-go picnic options for guests to eat lunch along the Riverwalk or down at the Beach Picnic Area. Both Yorktown Pub (Sat.) and Dukes Italian Eatery (Sat. & Sun.) will be serving lunch, so families can grab something to eat before hitting up all the fun. And up the hill on Main Street, Mobjack Bay Coffee Roasters & Petit Cafe has a cup of Deadrise Brew with your name on it! Water Street Grille will have a special Pirate-Themed menu with specialty cocktails and delicious apps and entrees. The staff even plans to get in the spirit and dress up for the occasion!
Weigh Anchor and Hoist the Mizzen!
Best Ways to Navigate the Event
Free parking is available at the Riverwalk Landing parking terrace, York Hall, York-Poquoson Courthouse, County Administration Building, and other designated public lots. The complimentary, wheelchair accessible Yorktown Trolley will also be available from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Also Happening Around Town
Pirate Invasion Farmers Market: On Saturday morning, April 27 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., take advantage of Yorktown’s waterfront farmers market. Enjoy live music; food trucks; chef cooking demonstrations; and a variety of vendors and artists!
American Revolution Museum at Yorktown: 2019 marks the 400th anniversary of key historical events that occurred in Virginia in 1619 and continue to define America today. As part of the 2019 Commemoration, American Evolution, an array of special exhibitions, events, public lectures and programs will take place at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. Visitors can also muster with troops in a re-created Continental Army encampment and help with chores at a re-created Revolution-era farm. Museum admission is free to James City County, York County, and Williamsburg neighbors with proof of residence.
Yorktown Battlefield: Take a guided tour to discover what it took for the United States to be independent as you explore the site of the last major battle of the Revolutionary War. On April 28, take in artillery demonstrations of a replica 18-pounder siege gun, the largest siege cannon used by the Americans at Yorktown. Firings take place at 12:15, 1:15, 2:15, and 3:15 p.m..
Yorktown Scenic Sunset Sails: The Schooner Alliance will sail into the sunset at 6 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. Spend a romantic evening scanning the horizon for dolphins, osprey, and other wildlife. Tickets are $37. Food and beverages available for purchase.
Pirates Invade Yorktown is sponsored by Riverwalk Landing Business Association, York County Arts Commission, York County Tourism, and Watermen’s Museum. Generous support provided by Patriot Tours & Provisions, Yorktown Sailing Charters, Riverwalk Restaurant, Water Street Grille, Carrot Tree Kitchens, Ben & Jerry’s, Viccellio Goldsmith, Yorktown Bookshop, Auntie M’s American Cottage, Yorktown Onion, Lowes of Gloucester, and Yorktown Arts Foundation.