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The Potomac River Festival - a weekend of sun, fun and celebration in Colonial Beach

70th Annual! June 11 - 13, 2021

2020s event postponed until 2021

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  • Sunday, June 2
    1:30 p.m. Baby Contest. Applications are due no later than June 1 at 6:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday, June 5
    5:00 p.m. Carnival on Town Hill thru Sunday.
  • Thursday, June 6
    5:00 p.m. Carnival on Town Hill
    Discount coupon for carnival

  • Friday, June 7
    10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Deck tours of the historic sailboat Edna E. Lockwood at the Municipal Pier.
    5:00 p.m. Carnival on Town Hill
    7:00 p.m. JP Soars & the Red Hots at High Tides
    7:30 p.m. Firemen's Parade. Begins on Colonial Avenue, turns onto Washington Ave.
    Miss Colonial Beach Pageant on Town Stage after the parade.
    Fire/Rescue Parade awards after the pageant
  • Saturday, June 8
    10:00 a.m. Arts & Crafts Vendors and Food Vendors on Town Hill and the Boardwalk.
    10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Deck tours of the historic sailboat Edna E. Lockwood at the Municipal Pier.
    12:00 p.m. Carnival on Town Hill all day
    12:00 p.m. Grand Feature Parade on Colonial & Washington Avenues
    2:00 p.m. Parade Awards Ceremony on Town Stage
    7:00 p.m. More More More Band at High Tides
    9:00 p.m. Fireworks
    9:30 p.m. Kristen and the Noise perform at Dockside
  • Sunday, June 9
    10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Vendors on Town Hill and the Boardwalk
    10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Deck tours of the historic sailboat Edna E. Lockwood at the Municipal Pier.
    12:00 p.m. Carnival on Town Hill
    1:00 p.m. Boat Parade. Great views of the parade from The Riverboat's outdoor deck or from the Municipal Pier.
    2:00 p.m. Pet Parade on Town Stage

    The annual Potomac River Festival is in its 68th year in Colonial Beach. It's a weekend-long event in mid-June with fun for the whole family. The gentle river breezes and warm sunshine make for a great time as you take in all the fun-filled events, sights and sounds of this wonderful event, sponsored by the Colonial Beach Chamber of Commerce.

    Potomac River Festival Events

    There's a Carnival that usually arrives on the Wednesday before Festival weekend.


    The Potomac River Festival usually kicks off at 7:30pm with the Colonial Beach Volunteer Fire/Rescue Parade. Units from all around the region join in. If you've never been, you should know that it's quite a sight, as well as quite an earful! Those engines will have their horns and sirens blaring, and lights flashing. Here's the video from 2015's parade:

    More video clips can be found on our YouTube Channel. The Miss Colonial Beach Pageant also takes place during the Friday evening festivities, typically right after the parade.


    Vendors on Town Hill and along the Boardwalk open their booths at 10:00am until 5:00pm. You'll find various vendors with all sorts of wares such as clothing, food, art, jewelry, wood sculptures, yard ornaments, furniture, antiques, sewn items, dolls, candles and other knick-knacks. Here's a tip: Buy it when you see it, because if you come back for it later, you won't be able to find it.

    DJ on Town Hill provides music for your listening pleasure. Heck, you can even get up and dance if you feel like it. Oftentimes, line dancing will take place and it's a blast!

    Grand Feature Parade and entertainment and is so much fun! You'll see some great groups and floats as they make their way through the streets from their beginning point, usually at the High School. Sometimes there's a Majorette competition on the schedule, too.

    Click or Tap here for parade pictures

    Sometimes live bands on Town Stage provide the music for an enjoyable afternoon and evening concert.

    A grand display of Fireworks cap off a great day of festival fun and usually begin at 9:00pm. Get there early as the beach area fills up quick! There's always a good turnout for this event because Colonial Beach always puts on a great fireworks show. I sometimes park near the BB&T bank branch and walk a few blocks. It's a good idea to bring chairs or a blanket to set down - especially if you're in the sandy part of the beach area. A flashlight is also helpful.


    The vendors usually open their booths at 10:00am and will last until 4:00pm.

    Colonial Beach Yacht Club puts on a Boat Parade travels from Monroe Bay up past the Town Pier, to the Riverboat and back. Get your cameras ready for all the beautiful boats as they float by.

    Pet Parade usually begins at 2:00pm at the town stage. Ponder pretty pooches prancing past parade participants. It is so cute to see all these dogs, some in costume, some performing tricks. Of course there's judging and your dog may even win a prize! Here are some pictures from the 2010 pet parade

    2014's Potomac River Festival took place June 6 - 8
    2013's event notes: 62nd Annual Potomac River Festival

    June 7 - 9, 2013
    Grand Marshal for the Grand Feature Parade: TORREY SMITH
    of the Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens
    parade theme: Hometown Heroes The Miss Colonial Beach pageant was rescheduled to Saturday, June 8th due to a tropical storm.
    The Friday night Firemen's Parade was moved to Saturday and was a part of the Grand Feature Parade.

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