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Every April, the Midshipmen of the U.S. Naval Academy wield their croquet mallets and march to St. John’s College to do battle against the Johnnies, and 2019 looks to be another fierce match.

This annual rite of passage for collegians on the hallowed lawn of St. John’s is being held for the 37th year for the cherished Annapolis Cup. The match has become a beloved spring tradition for Annapolis, Maryland’s scenic capital on the Chesapeake Bay.

Set for Saturday, April 27, 2019, this competitive croquet match is certain to bring several thousand fans to Annapolis once more.

A True Croquet Tale

This mallet and ball war began in 1982 when the U.S. Naval Academy commandant arrogantly bragged his Midshipmen could beat the little Johnnies in any sporting event.

Angered, Kevin Heyburn, a feisty freshman of St. John’s College, decided to take on the future officers of the U.S. Navy and Marines to a duel with croquet mallets.

Never giving up home field advantage, St. John’s has been the host of the annual event from the start. Naturally, the Johnnies have won the Annapolis Cup 29 out of 37 matches.

Johnny Mind Games

Adorned always in spotless whites of the U.S. Croquet Association, the Midshipmen don a different team tie for every match. In contrast, the Johnnies employ mind games and reveal their team uniform just moments before the match.

They have worn tuxedos, kilts, and U.S. Army uniforms to remind the Midshipmen’s of their eternal enemies, the West Point cadets. Spectators also join in the fun. Alumni and current students wear fashionable period suits, dresses and hats from the Roaring Twenties.

Date & Time: Saturday, April 27, 2019, 1 p.m.

Place: Front Lawn of St. John’s College

For More Information: 2019 Annapolis Cup

Your Inn Near the Croquet Match

St. John’s College is just half a mile away from Gibson’s Lodgings, a historic inn located in downtown Annapolis offering superb accommodations and free parking for guests.

Gibson’s three houses host 20 fully-furnished guest rooms, with three 19th-century parlors, a dining room, conference room, and a beautiful central courtyard. See the photos of our elegant rooms by clicking on the link for each house below.

Berman House

Lauer House

Patterson House

Call us to reserve your room at our toll free number (877) 330-0057. We’ll be very happy to serve you and your family throughout the year.

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