Annapolis came from behind to defeat Eastport 4-3 in the 15th annual Slaughter Across the Water tug-of-war on Saturday.
"We figured out the reason Eastport has been winning all these years is beer," Annapolis tug caller Doug Smith said. "So, we got beer."
The beer, wine and rum punch was served out of Red Red Wine Bar's wine bar on wheels—which marked the first time Annapolis served alcohol on its side of the water.
The Maritime Republic of Eastport has organized a party complete with music and alcohol on their side of the rope each year. For many years the "Eastportaricans" had to send people across the water to help tug for Annapolis.
"Usually it's just a skeleton crew of people here," Mayor Josh Cohen said.
This year, the city stepped up and enlisted the help of MainStreets Annapolis Partnership, which coordinated seven 33-member teams. Annapolis organizers actually had to turn away volunteer tuggers on more than one occasion.
Donielle Flynn, Annapolis' host and WRNR DJ, even teased the Eastport side about a water taxi full of "defectors" who crossed Spa Creek to party on the Annapolis side
It was also the first time in Cohen's memory that Annapolis brought live music to the party as well. The Walking Sticks played as the crowd cheered on the Annapolis tuggers.
Annapolis also recruited midshipmen from the U.S. Naval Academy to tug for them against soldiers from Fort Meade.
"It was a lot harder than I expected it to be," said midshipmen Christopher Gallardo, who lead the Navy team.
Annapolis won Army vs. Navy, Police vs. Fire, Dogs vs. Docs and the breast cancer survivors tugs. Eastport won the rounds for the bartenders, banks and sports fans.
After the tug ended, the Annapolis crowd mostly disappeared while the party in Eastport continued into the afternoon. "Easpotaricans" offered party goers drinks, live music, a variety of food stands and even a moon bounce for the kids.
Annapolis may have taken the tug, but Eastport still took the party.