Pirates to take over Milford in annual tradition

MILFORD — Break out your Jolly Roger and eye patch, Pirate’s Day is back with a full day of family-friendly events throughout downtown Milford on Sunday, June 6.

This year’s event marks the 20th annual Pirate’s Day. Last year’s day had to be canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Pirate’s Day has served as an unofficial start to the summer in Milford for years,” said Tracy Bonosconi, president of the Downtown Milford Business Association which organizes the annual event. “We know our local families have a long a challenging year, and Pirate’s Day signals not only a return to summer but a return to a touch of normalcy. It’s even more meaningful that it happens to be our twentieth year.”

The event starts at Lisman Landing, 37 Helwig Street, with the Pancakes with a Pirate character breakfast. There are two seatings, at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. and tickets are required. Register at downtownmilfordct.com.

The day continues at on Milford Green at 11 a.m., with the Milford Public Library hosting a pirate story time at the gazebo. Other events on the green include pirate crafts, DJ music and pirate-themed yoga.

The Milford Historical Society also will host tales of pirate lore and old-fashioned lawn games from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“Pirate legend is part of Milford culture,” Bonosconi said. “Rumor has it Captain Kidd has buried treasure on Charles Island.”

According to local legend, Captain William Kidd visited Milford in 1699 while traveling from the Caribbean to Boston. When he arrived in Boston, he was arrested and imprisoned before being returned to England for trial. He was later executed.

The same legend has it that Kidd buried some of his treasure on Charles Island, possibly beneath a giant boulder known as Hog Rock. After his arrest, Kidd’s treasure was located on Gardiner’s Island, but it is not known whether he buried all of his treasure there. In a 2015 statement, city officials acknowledged the legend and said people have come to Charles Island to search for the lost treasure for the past 300 years.

Captain Kidd himself will arrive at Lisman Landing with his crew by boat on The Oz at noon. The day also will feature live music from Rockin’ Ron the Friendly Pirate, plus pirate re-enactments by the Free Men of the Sea, story-telling, and a pirate treasure map hunt through 14 local businesses.

“We love being able to continue a long-standing Milford tradition,” said event director Makayla Silva. “A special thanks goes to all our sponsors, participating businesses and volunteers for helping to make this year one of the best ever.”