Four-year-old Ryder Brennan wore a pirate costume as he helped other children pull a covered treasure chest onto a ship with a rope.
“We got the buried treasure! We found it!” Ryder exclaimed.
The Glen Cove boy and friend Andon Esteves, 5, were among 15 children who were invited by Kings of the Coast pirates to partake in a scavenger hunt for treasure at the inaugural Sea Faire at Glen Cove festival at Garvies Point on Saturday.
Ryder’s mother, Kimberly Brennan, who moved to Glen Cove in February, was thrilled to bring her son to the festival because of his healthy obsession with pirates.
“As soon as I mentioned there’d be pirates, that was it,” said Brennan, 43. “Ryder knew exactly where to find his pirate costume from Halloween and though it’s 93 degrees out he won’t take it off. He loved the treasure hunt. It’s such a great idea for the kids.”
The festival, held along Glen Cove’s waterfront, offers craft vendors, live music, Italian food vendors and carnival foods, rides and games. To complete the Saturday festivities, Fireworks by Grucci was scheduled to light up the sky at 9:30 p.m. The festival continues on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Nearly 100 artisans sold jewelry, handbags, pots and other items near the midway, just past the carnival games, food tents and rides. NY Waterways also provided tours and returns again on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Boats leave hourly and rides cost $15 a person.
Glen Cove Mayor Ralph V. Suozzi said the festival had been in the works since January and is being used to help promote the $1 billion mixed-use redevelopment project slated for the city’s waterfront. The first phase of the project — roads and 380 residential units — is expected to break ground by mid-2014.
“We want to reacquaint people with the waterfront,” said Suozzi, who expects nearly 15,000 people to come through during the two-day festival. “As the space evolves over the next five to 10 years, this area will be more and more accessible. Our hope is that this festival, which we plan to happen annually, helps make the waterfront a destination.”
To get out of the heat and catch more of a breeze, festivalgoers also rode The Christeen, a 40-foot gaff-rigged sloop and national historic landmark, which provided rides at $20 a person. All of its revenue benefits the Glen Cove Youth Bureau.
Arlene O’Dell, executive director of the youth bureau, said the money will benefit its afterschool programs, summer camp and mentoring program.
“It’s such a great idea to have a festival like this to draw people into Glen Cove who might otherwise miss us because we’re so far north on the Island,” said O’Dell, of Sea Cliff.
With a “Hello Kitty” painting dripping down her face, 5-year-old Alyssa Weigand and her sister Natalie, 3, spun around and around on the teacup ride.
“The heat and humidity is almost unbearable,” their mother Mara Weigand, 43, of Glen Cove, said. “But we don’t mind coming out to enjoy the waterfront. It’s nice that this place is getting more attention. It’ll be so beautiful here when my girls get a little older.”
For more information and to find a schedule of events, visit seafaireatglencove.com. Free parking and shuttle services are at Pulaski Street garage, Brewster Street garage, Robert M. Finley Middle School and Glen Cove High School.