BALTIMORE (WJZ)– We honor the bicentennial of the War of 1812 and the penning of the Star-Spangled Banner which happened off the waters at Fort McHenry.

There are sailors in uniform from all over the world and visitors from all over the nation as Baltimore is at the center of the nation marking its bicentennial.

There are celebrations in other parts of the country but Baltimore is the centerpiece because of our connection with Fort McHenry and the Star-Spangled Banner.

Jessica Kartalija reports 40 captains from 40 different nations were honored on Thursday in a nautical ceremony.

Since Thursday morning, the Blue Angels have been practicing, and ships have been coming into the harbor. Everywhere you look there are sights and sounds to take in, and it all started early Thursday morning with a lot of pomp in a special Sailabration opening ceremony.

An international spotlight is on Baltimore’s Inner Harbor as the Sailabration officially gets underway. It started with a ceremony with Maryland’s top brass.

“We are officially kicking off Baltimore’s Star-Spangled Sailabration,” Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced.

Captains from all 40 ships from around the world were presented with gifts as the naval ceremonial band played.

Visitors from around the world commemorate the War of 1812.

“This is for the Japanese ships that will come in,” a visitor waving a Japanese flag said. “It’s wonderful seeing Baltimore. I want to see everybody.”

“It’s something to celebrate and give history to people who probably are not aware of what’s going on,” a Baltimore resident said.

View pictures from the Star-Spangled Sailabration.


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