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Potomac River Festival

The annual Potomac River Festival is in its 73rd year in Colonial Beach. It's a weekend-long event taking place the second weekend each 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.

2023 PRF Parade Route

Please see the modified parade route above for both the Firemen's Parade on Friday evening and the Grand Feature Parade on Saturday at noon. This is due to roadwork in the area. The parade normally makes a left turn at Boundary St., but this time it will turn at Wilder.

Schedule of Events:

Friday, June 9, 2023

Saturday, June 10, 2023

  • 9-11am Parade Registration (High School)
  • 10:00am Vendors until 5pm (Boardwalk)
  • 11:00pm Parade Lineup (Jackson Street)
  • 12:00pm Grand Feature Parade (see route, above)
  • Kids Zone until 4pm (Town Hill) Rides, a Slide, Bounce House, Face Painting, Bubble Table
  • 6:00pm until 9pm Sip & Stroll, Street Party (North Irving Ave.)
  • 9:00pm/dark Fireworks (Municipal Pier)

Sunday, June 11. 2023

  • 10:00am until 4pm Vendors (Boardwalk)
  • 11:00am until 3pm Kids Zone (Town Hill)
  • 1:00pm Boat Parade (beachfront, Municipal Pier)
  • 2:00pm Pet Parade (Town Stage)

Potomac River Festival Events

The was a Carnival that usually arrived on the Wednesday before Festival weekend. This event halted since 2020, sadly.


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 typically also takes place during the Friday evening festivities, but has been known to be held on Saturday.


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

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 Truist 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.

2020s event was postponed until 2021

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.

  • Friday, June 7, 2019
    10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. There were Deck tours of the historic sailboat Edna E. Lockwood at the Municipal Pier.

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