In Pictures: Southport blesses the fleet for summer

FAIRFIELD — Sailing season officially got underway Saturday afternoon with the Blessing of the Fleet at the lower wharf in Southport Harbor.

Following a parade from Southport Congregational Church, local clergy said prayers over around 50 seafaring vessels, which exited the harbor under a baptism-like spray of water projected 40 feet in the air from a fire house.

“This is indeed a really magical event, where the community comes together,” said U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who joined other officials, including U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy and U.S. Rep. Jim Himes.

“It is really a very sweet ceremony in the best sense,” he said.