- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Residents of the small southern Charles County community enjoyed the first Cobb Island Day when steamboats ruled the rivers and Ford Model Ts ran the roads.
Bill Barger, a local history enthusiast and Cobb Island resident since 1994, said that the Cobb Island Day festival has existed in some form since 1927 and was originally a Labor Day celebration. Although the time of year has changed, Barger said the festival has remained just as popular as ever among the town’s residents.
“It’s great for the town,” Barger said. “The residents love it, the kids love it, it’s a hit all around.”
This year’s Cobb Island Day was held Saturday on a balmy day. Vendors and attractions began to set up on Old Fisherman’s Field around 9 a.m., although the festivities did not officially kick off until 10 a.m. with the beginning of the parade, which went down Main Avenue.
A variety of organizations and local citizens marched in the parade, which Cobb Island resident and parade co-coordinator Mike Callahan said was reintroduced to Cobb Island Day four years ago at his suggestion of and that of another resident, Margaret White.
“Cobb Island Day brings together people from all backgrounds, from Cobb Island itself, from Cobb Neck, and Charles County as a whole,” Callahan said. “It has such a small town feeling. It makes you feel as if you’ve stepped back in time to a simpler time.”
For citizens and vendors alike, the day brought the chance to showcase the best of Cobb Island and the area as a whole.
Jan de Regt of Bay K9 Search and Rescue said the group values the day as a source of community outreach.
With the group’s two bloodhounds, Edgar and Millie, the organization set out to enjoy a lazy day in the sun educating people on its mission.
“The best thing about this is we get to talk to kids and let them know we can help when there’s trouble,” de Regt said. “Most kids see dogs these big and they get scared. When they meet ours we show them that they’re not scary, and that if they’re ever in trouble they can help.”
For Sharon Roberts, a former resident of Cobb Island who moved to King George , Va., with her husband to establish their alpaca farm, Cobb Island Day is a much-anticipated event.
“We’ve been coming to this with our alpacas the last nine years, and it’s wonderful,” Roberts said. “For me, this is homecoming. It’s a chance to reunite with my community.”