Friends of Fort Knox will sponsor its annual Pirate Day at the Fort Knox State Historic Site, off Route 174, Saturday, Aug. 22, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Out on the Penobscot, the professional Pirates of the Dark Rose and their vaunted ship the Must Roos will let loose cannon fire at the fort’s pirate cannon battery. All those harboring a secret desire to be a pirate are encouraged to don their best pirate costumes and practice pirate speech. The pirates will engage in a cannon firing demonstrations, sword fighting, gunplay and creating general mayhem.

The Darling’s Ice Cream for a Cause Truck will be on hand, offering free ice cream in exchange for a donation to support the Friends of Fort Knox activities. Pirate Day will feature several contests to include best sounding pirate, best-dressed pirate, a pirate parade and a treasure hunt. The tentative schedule for Pirate Day contests follows.

11 a.m.: Capt. Crudbeard’s cannon shooting lesson

Noon: Pirate parade and costume contest

1 p.m.: Pirate ship attack with cannons, flintlocks and cutlasses in front of fort

1:45 p.m.: Talk like a pirate contest

2:15 p.m.: Pirate puppet show

3 p.m.: Pirate weapons demonstration with grappling hooks, pikes, boarding axes, whips, swords, pistols and blunderbuss.

Those planning to attend the event are encouraged to form carpools as there is limited public parking at the fort. Visitors may want to bring a picnic, as there will be no food other than snacks in the gift shop. An event donation of $3 per person is requested above the regular fort admission fee to cover the cost of hiring the pirates.

Adventurous souls may also book a cruise on the Must Roos pirate ship Saturday or Sunday, Aug. 22 and 23, rain or shine. Tentative cruise times are 9, 10:15 and 11:30 a.m.; and 2, 3:15, 4:30 and 5:45 p.m. The charge for the pirate ship sail is $25 per person for an hour cruise and cannon firing. The ship leaves from the Bucksport Town dock (across from Bucksport Post Office), and tickets may be purchased in advance by calling 469-6553. Advanced purchase is recommended as the ship can only carry six passengers. Cruise tickets are non-refundable, and the vessel is not wheelchair accessible.

The Friends of Fort Knox is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving Fort Knox and enhancing its educational, cultural and economic value for the people of Maine.  The Friends manage Fort Knox on behalf of the Maine Department of Conservation’s Bureau of Parks and Lands on behalf of all the people of Maine. For more information about the Friends and other special events, visit fortknox.maineguide.com.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.