Havre de Grace

Approaching Havre de Grace

Approaching Havre de Grace

We’d always zoomed through the upper Chesapeake and now it was time to explore a new place, Havre de Grace at the mouth of the Susquehanna River. The Susquehanna is what makes the Bay the Bay, providing over half of its fresh water. One of the oldest rivers in the WORLD, it flows for 464 miles from New York, to PA then into MD. The mouth is small near Havre de Grace and dams are used to control the water flow during rainy times and spring flooding.

But the question is- how do you pronounce Havre de Grace??  If you say Haevre de Grace (long A sound), with a French pronunciation of Havre, then you are technically accurate but you will not be mistaken for a local. According to Southern Living’s extensive research into the correct pronunciation of “southern” city names, the city’s name gets all run together with the “de” sounding like “t”. So you say it,  “Haverty Grace”.  Bet you feel better knowing this.

The town-sized city of less than 14,000 offers a walkable downtown area, a small maritime museum, a duck decoy museum, a boardwalk and the very popular Bomboys Ice Cream mega-parlor with their large fudge and candy shop right across the street. Yes to ice-cream, no to candy shop.

We choose Tidewater Marina because not only did they have fuel, they had room for us. Billy was fun at the gas dock and he found us an easy side tie dock in their basin furthest away from the “more active” rack storage small boat basin.

We exited (on foot) the marina (a gated secure fenced in place) and turned left to head toward the point where we’d spotted the little lighthouse. The Maritime museum was just my size and priced to entice, so in we went.


Havre de Grace's First Family -John & elizabeth Rodgers

Havre de Grace’s First Family -John & Elizabeth Rodgers. Looks like the house still stands.

We always wonder about the process of crabbing, fish-trapping, oystering and lobstering and how the various nets, traps, etc look below the surface. The below was informative and we learned something new. Retention is another thing. 🙂

A peek at "below the floats"

A peek at “below the floats” of gillnetting.


Benj- this one's for you

Benj- this one’s for you. Some may recall the 3 sheep Benj raised a few summers ago.

North Washington St is where the action is, if you can call it that. The Vineyard Wine Bar left no doubt that they were highly rated and it looked enticing, if not a skosh out of place in this town, er city. But well, you know us and if there’s donuts around we point in that direction. Golls Bakery; talk about old fashioned. More like out of the Twilight Zone of the 60s/70s era. Family owned and operated since 1930, the place looked like not much had changed in many years, including the prices.

Excellent tradional bakery in Havre de Grace

Excellent traditional bakery in Havre de Grace

We didn’t think much would be available at 4pm and the current owner’s nephew assured us Saturday morning would bring a huge assortment of temptations. With a nod to Terminator our “we’ll be back” must have been believable.


Clever name for a very interesting store

Clever name for a very interesting store

The Rodgers home survived the 1813 burning of Havre de Grace. Dating from 1787, this is the town's oldest documented structure.

The Rodgers home survived the 1813 burning of Havre de Grace. Dating from 1787, this is the town’s oldest documented structure.

We found the Rodgers home across from Laurrapin, our selected dinner spot on N.Washington. They wisely/kindly defined the word, and we both agreed while memorable, it didn’t quite reach the laurrapin-ness of Spoon River in Belhaven, NC.


Dinner- Farm to Fork Washington St

Dinner- Farm to Fork on N. Washington St

Appetizers and entrees were mostly reasonably priced as were the creative cocktails. As you can see we couldn’t resist a delectable dessert, or two. The cheesecake was not your run-of-the-mill kind, but a goat cheese cake. A bit of tang as expected and very tasty. I still remain a fan of the artery clogging heavy New York cheesecake. 🙂 Some day I will be able to make one again.

The flourless choc cake was akin to solidified hot fudge sauce- yummy

The flourless choc cake was akin to solidified hot fudge sauce- yummy

We spotted a sign at the small park next to Tidewater: Farmers Market Sat 9-12.  Lucky us, we seldom run across a market and this one was so convenient. Our morning just got better-the plan to raid the bakery was enhanced by a market opportunity.




And there we are, essentially next door.

How close can you get?

How close can you get?

The Vienna bread at $1.95 from Golls was a steal. Hearty and flavorful, with a soft crust, it made excellent french toast. The bacon/cheddar/chive scones and pasture eggs purchased at the market.

More doughnuts and raisin sweet rolls are missing

More doughnuts and raisin sweet rolls are missing from the photo

Stomachs full and the bread basket stocked, we headed out back into the Bay our bows pointing toward the South River, which can you believe is the next river south of Annapolis?

Bells Island Deja Vu

A front usually brings rain, wind and a temperature drop

A front usually brings rain, wind and a temperature drop

Wednesday found us anchored behind Bells Island (some charts say Bells Cay) awaiting the arrival of a cold front that would bring up to 25kt winds out of the SW to West. With some exceptions, most of the Bahama islands and cays offer no west protection during the clocking winds that often occur when a cold front passes over or comes very close to your location. Last year just after Valentine’s Day we hid here from a front, and now here we are again.

We had plenty to keep us busy all day Thursday: defrosting the fridge was tops on the list, backed up the laptop to the hard drive (way overdue), cracked open our coconuts and baked coconut bread (near perfect loaves this time), baked chocolate macaroons and got frequently distracted by the T-storms that passed by- rain, lightning, thunder- quite the show every time.

Two cuties- Russ tries to imitate the cute coconut face

Two cuties- Russ tries to imitate the cute coconut face

I prepped photos for the blog but that’s about all the blog work I could do.  Entries are way behind because lately I either haven’t had good enough cell service to tether, no WiFi or just been having too much fun to spend time in front of the laptop.

Getting a blog post ready to publish requires more steps than your favorite lighthouse.

  • download photos from camera, crop and fix as needed, label and add tags
  • select the ones for the blog and make them “smaller” for easier uploading
  • open Firefox and WordPress and upload the chosen pics to the media library
  • close Firefox,open IE and WordPress and copy and paste the text from Word
  • select photos from media library and hope they go where you want them
  • proofread, edit the publish date to be close to the event date, add tags
  • click Publish and then review the suggested corrections, etc
  • OK now click Publish again and this time the post is done and published

All these steps rarely occur during one session and if the internet connection isn’t lost once or twice during the process I feel luckier than a lobster in the Land and Sea Park.

Friday we sailed 15nm south to Staniel Cay where we’d spend a couple of days and meet up with s/v Makai.

Little Halls Pond Cay is owned by Johnny Depp

Little Halls Pond Cay is owned by Johnny Depp

We left Bells Island by rounding it counter-clockwise and looking right, a bit north of Bells, we could see the privately owned Little Halls Pond Cay. We’d thought we’d watch a Pirates movie, but alas, our other family pirate member has the DVD.