Fun for the young at Fish Tales

Fish Tales, Tugs & Sails fills Waterfront Park with activity. TIM COOK/THE DAY

Holy mackerel: Fish Tales, Tugs & Sails returns for its annual New London festivities. On Saturday, kids should head down to the Waterfront Park, along the Thames River, to take part in all the activities inspired by books and the environment. Most notable where the environment is concerned are all the boat-related events.

Something to sea: Lots of water-related stuff going on, with Mystic Aquarium and Project Oceanology providing touch tanks, and the tall ship Mystic Whaler opening for tours. Thomas Towboat will have tugboats on hand for the younguns to see, and New London Harbor Tours offers a ride on the water.

Sights and sounds: Children's book authors will read; among them, Janet Lawler shares "Oceans Counting" and Mollie Wilson offering up "Duck Tape." Music is part of the day, too, thanks to Kidsploration featuring Steve Elci & Friends, and Joseph Salcedo. Expect illusions from Elijah's Magic and interactive dance with L'Ana Burton.

New to you: For the first time, the festival is offering a "Design Our Official Cupcake" contest. Among the judges: reps from Sugar Cupcakery & Bakery, a winner of the Food Network show "Cupcake Wars."

- KRISTINA DORSEY

Fish Tales, Tugs & Sails, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Waterfront Park, New London; free, but attendees encouraged to bring a new or gently used children's book to donate to the Whale's Tales Book Bank, which contributes them to New London youth; (860) 444-2489, newlondonmainstreet.org.

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