Pirate ship sailing into downtown Wilmington

PortCityDaily.com is your source for free news and information in the Wilmington area.

The Meka II will make its way up the Cape Fear River Saturday, announcing its arrival by cannon salute. Photo courtesy Pirate Privateer Productions.
The Meka II will make its way up the Cape Fear River Saturday, announcing its arrival by cannon salute. Photo courtesy Pirate Privateer Productions.

Avast, all ye scallywags: A pirate ship is making its way to Wilmington this weekend.

Captain Horatio Sinbad will be steering his vessel, The Meka II, up the Cape Fear River at high noon Saturday. The 54-foot long brigantine will dock at Port City Marina in northern downtown at approximately 12:20 p.m., Stephanie Fornes with Wilmington Harbor Enhancement Trust (WHET) said Tuesday.

The ship’s arrival is part of WHET’s Feast of the Pirates celebration during the city’s annual Riverfest celebration, which runs Friday through Sunday along Water Street. WHET is a local non-profit aimed at maintaining and improving the city’s riverfront.

The Feast of the Pirates will include a host of events, including a costume contest and re-enactments. Photo courtesy WHET.
The Feast of the Pirates will include a host of events, including a costume contest and re-enactments. Photo courtesy WHET.

For many years, the organization has staged Invasion of the Pirates but decided this year to turn it up a notch and throw a bash that gives tribute to the Feast of the Pirates celebrations that took place in Wilmington during the 1920s.

WHET also recently arranged for the Spanish tall ship, El Galleon, to dock in Wilmington for tours. The visit attracted over 10,000 visitors, WHET member Dick Heiser noted, and helped raised funds that will be used to the enhance public dock and Visitors Center restrooms.

Feast of the Pirates will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at the marina, 10 Harnett St. Fornes said The Meka’s arrival will be marked by a traditional pirate cannon salute–aboard The Meka, with a response from onshore. The free, all-ages event also includes a staged pirate invasion, re-enactment and treasure hunt. Vendors and a beer garden will be onsite.

Then, at 7 p.m., the big tent opens up to of-age privateers only with the Feast of the Pirates Parrrty. There’ll be a catered dinner buffet and a cash bar with beer and wine, as well as an adult pirate costume contest and live music. Tickets are $35 per person or $60 per couple.

Click here to order tickets in advance and for more information.

Hilary Snow is a reporter at Port City Daily. Reach her at hilary.s@portcitydaily.com.