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News Release, St. Mary’s County Public Information Office

Leonardtown, MD – The Potomac Jazz & Seafood Festival, one of the mid-Atlantic’s signature jazz events held along the shores of the beautiful Potomac River in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, and in the charming Town of Leonardtown, will feature a fantastic lineup of jazz artists during the three day jazz weekend in 2020.

This popular, annual festival, which has become known in the past two decades for showcasing local culinary delicacies of Maryland’s Mother County in addition to renowned, national jazz talent, draws close to 1000 jazz enthusiasts every year. The event, now in its 21st year after beginning back in 1999, was expanded to a three-day weekend event in partnership with the nearby Town of Leonardtown in 2019 for its 20th Anniversary. Due to the popularity of the expanded weekend among festivalgoers last year, the award-winning 2020 festival weekend will once again include exciting events and activities throughout Leonardtown for the entire weekend.

On Friday, July 10, 2020, the festivities kick-off with a free, jazz era concert/kickoff party in historic Leonardtown with the Chesapeake Swing band and the U.S. Navy Band The Commodores performing from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. in Leonardtown Square. The evening will be a celebration of jazz throughout the 20s (jazz age), the 30’s-40s (swing era), and the 50s-90s (modern and Latin jazz). Attendees are urged to come in their choice of period costume from the 20s, 30s, 40s or 50s. There will be raffles and prizes awarded for a costume. The celebration will continue with after-parties at in-town restaurants, the Rex, Old Towne Pub and Social Coffeehouse & Cocktail Bar.

Marion Meadows

On Saturday, July 11, 2020, the “Main Event” of the Potomac Jazz & Seafood Festival will begin on the grounds of St. Clement’s Island Museum in Colton’s Point, 20 short minutes from Leonardtown. Three nationally-acclaimed jazz acts, starting with local favorite Latrice Carr at 3 p.m., followed by Althea Rene featuring JJ Sansaverino at 5 p.m., and ending with the headlining act, Marion Meadows, at 7 p.m., will perform during the afternoon and evening, while a plethora of local food vendors offering a wide variety of seafood and other Southern Maryland fare, will be available throughout the day.

Free water taxi rides around picturesque St. Clement’s Island, the first landing of English settlers in Maryland in 1634, will be offered to all eventgoers, as well as free admission to the museum. Special memorabilia commemorating the Festival, including the ever-popular music poster with this year’s design, will be on sale.

 Latrice Carr

Then, on Sunday, July 12, 2020, the Town of Leonardtown once again will be the host of various jazz-themed activities, including jazz brunches at several in-town restaurants, a cocktail movie screening party of a classic jazz-age/themed film at the in-town coffee shop, Social Coffeehouse and Cocktail Bar, jazz events at Port of Leonardtown Winery Cooperative tasting room, and an afternoon jazz event featuring local jazz artists and other activities at Shepherds Old Field Market, an historic warehouse and hardware store rehabbed into an indoor marketplace and community gathering space that contains shops, a deli, coffee shop, beer garden, winery and more. An exclusive jazz cruise on Breton Bay will round out the weekend for those looking to end the festival in style.

Tickets and discount packages are now available on the festival’s website, www.PotomacJazzandSeafoodFestival.com, as well as on the event’s Facebook page. There, those interested can find more information about everything happening that weekend. The public is encouraged to check the website and Facebook page often as new information is being updated weekly.

 Althea Rene featuring JJ Sansaverino

Visitors from out of town are encouraged to stay the entire weekend to enjoy all the festivities by purchasing special discount festival hotel packages, which will include such amenities like hotel room stays, festival tickets, brunch, and other dining tickets, wine tastings and much more. More details to come.

Proceeds from this event go toward funding the nonprofit Friends of St. Clement’s Island & Piney Point Museums’ mission of supporting the museums and historic sites under the care of the St. Mary’s County Museum Division. The event’s major partners include the Friends of St. Clement’s Island & Piney Point Museums, St. Mary’s County Museum Division, Town of Leonardtown and Visit St. Mary’s MD. For more information regarding the festival, to see promo videos, or to purchase tickets or packages, please visit www.PotomacJazzandSeafoodFestival.com.


David M. Higgins II, Publisher/Editor

David M. Higgins was born in Baltimore and grew up in Southern Maryland. He has had a passion for journalism since high school. After spending many years in the Hospitality Industry he began working in...