Rosies Invade the Yard!

August 11 & 12, 2018: Rosies Invade the Yard - A celebration of the Shipbuilding Women of the Navy

August 11 & August 12, 2018

Charlestown Navy Yard


Join us for a two-day extravaganza celebrating the role of women workers at the Charlestown Navy Yard!

Thousands of women worked at the Charlestown Navy Yard during World War II. The Yard's newspaper called them SWONs: the Shipbuilding Women of the Navy. They fulfilled roles from painters to welders, and riveters to sheet metal workers. Their efforts played a critical role in the outcome of the war and left a lasting mark on American history. Come join us in remembering and celebrating the work of these Shipbuilding Women of the Navy!

The 2018 event schedule is still in progress. As events, performances, and activities are confirmed they will be posted here. Please check back soon!

A couple in center dancing to music, other dancers are in the periphery.
Swing dancing returns to the Navy Yard! Free lessons will be available before the live music and dancing on Saturday. More live swing will fill the air again Sunday afternoon!
(All events are both Saturday and Sunday unless otherwise noted.)

Swing & Dance

  • Swing the Night Away!
    Saturday Evening - Music & Dance Tent

    As the sun begins to set on the Charlestown Navy Yard, join Boston Swing Central and The Easy Winners to swing the night away!

  • The Mood Swings Orchestra
    Sunday Afternoon - Music & Dance Tent

    Enjoy the swinging tunes of The Mood Swings Orchestra, an all female big band. Since 2003 the Mood Swings have been delighting audiences with their repertoire of swing music from the 1930s and beyond.

A Collage of five photographs. Left top: Boy sits in jeep. Left bottom: Girl colors at table. Center: Woman ties red bandanna on child. Top right: children at easels. Bottom right: Costumed workers at jeep.

Hands-on History:

  • Hands on History Tent
    Saturday & Sunday - Times TBA

    Do you think you would have made a good Navy Yard employee in World War II? Try your hand making a worker badge, twisting rope, riveting, and more! Explore activities and games for little hands and the young at heart!
    Don’t forget to strike your best Rosie pose in front of the “We Can Do It” selfie station!

Woman flexing her right arm against a yellow background with a speech bubble reading "We Can Do It!"

Ships & SWONs:

Tours and Special Exhibits

  • Rosie Roll Call
    Navy Yard Visitor Center
    View photographs and newspaper articles featuring the SWONs: Shipbuilding Women of the Navy. Have a Rosie in your family? Honor their legacy and add them to the roll call!
  • Rosie’s Navy Yard
    Times to be announced - 60 minute ranger-led tours. Tours begin at the flag pole on Pier 1
    Over 8,000 women joined the workforce at the Boston Naval Shipyard to help win World War II. Join this free walking tour to explore their stories.
  • Vehicles for Victory
    Saturday and Sunday - Pier 1 and 1st Avenue Come explore the different kinds of vehicles that were transported by Landing Ship, Tanks (LSTs). The men and women at this Navy Yard built 44 LSTs during World War II.
  • Visit USS Cassin Young
    10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
    Explore the main deck of this World War II Fletcher-class Destroyer! Look for SWON stations and learn about the vital role women played in building these ships. During World War II, over 80 destroyers and destroyer escorts were built by this Navy Yard.
  • USS Cassin Young Guided Tours
    Times to be announced - 45 minute ranger-led tour.
    See how these ships were built and learn about the men who served on board. FREE tickets are available first-come, first-served, aboard the ship. Visitors must be over 42” in height to participate in this tour. *Note: Ship activities may be canceled or modified due to weather and/or tidal conditions.

Last updated: May 6, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

Charlestown Navy Yard
Boston , MA 02129


(617) 242-5601

Contact Us