Sailing Through The Winter Solstice event is still on this year, and growing

This content is sponsored by the Visit Frederick.

Photo credit: Visit Frederick
Photo credit: Visit Frederick
Photo credit: Visit Frederick

It’s no secret that we are living in a strange time. Things like going on a date, meeting up with friends, and keeping your family entertained are a lot more difficult than they were a year ago. Many of the activities and events we’ve come to know and love have either scaled back or have disappeared completely. The question “what should we do this weekend?” has fewer viable answers than ever before. There is one event however that is not only still happening this year, it’s actually grown significantly.

Sailing Through The Winter Solstice celebrates its fifth anniversary on Carroll Creek Park this year with a record number of participants. Each year since its inception, uniquely designed and decorated boats set sail in the creek in late November and remain there to be enjoyed through the first weekend in February. Each boat is sponsored by a local business or community organization and many are themed to reflect their sponsor. For example, local brewery Flying Dog’s boat includes an oversized version of one of their beer cans being crushed by a kraken. Morgan Keller Construction’s boat, aptly named the Ribbon Cutter, features a crane truck actively working on the boat’s sails.

While the display is free to enjoy, you can make things extra fun for your group by making a small donation to vote for your favorite boat. Each sponsor has selected a local charity and is hoping to raise funds by gaining votes. One dollar equals one vote for the boat of your choice. The boat with the most votes at the end of the season will give all of their earnings to their selected charity and be crowned champion for the year.

The display is organized by local nonprofit Color On The Creek, the same group who puts colorful flowers and lilies in Carroll Creek Park in the spring and summer. The group is dedicated to maintaining the quality and aesthetic appeal of this unique mile and a half urban park in Downtown Frederick, Maryland. The group is made up entirely of volunteers and has accomplished an impressive amount. Not only has the group improved the experience of visiting the park, they have also solved some serious water quality issues that previously plagued the creek.

You can view the boats anytime day or night. In fact, you may want to take a look while it’s light out and again after it gets dark and the lights come on. Lights typically turn on at sunset, so this is a great time to see them both ways. You’ll find countless local restaurants and shops just steps from the creek offering curbside pickup. This is a great way to take advantage of a mild afternoon and enjoy a takeout picnic in the park.

Start planning your visit today at

Federal News Network Logo

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up