The official start of boating season kicks off this year on April 21, with the traditional Blessing of the Fleet, the centerpiece of the Benicia Yacht Club’s annual Opening Day on the Strait celebration. Boating communities around the globe will participate in the blessing, each with their own version of the ceremony. BYC’s tradition is a lineup of boats that parade around the harbor, decorated around a chosen theme. This year’s theme is “Our Flag Was Still There,” and as the boats pass through, they receive a blessing from a member of a local clergy. A family-friendly, all day slate of events includes arts and craft booths, live music, games for kids, a ducky race, dinner and dancing. The Yacht Club is open to non-members who can drop in, hang out, have some food and drink and see what it’s all about.