Not all of the rallies in the Northern Hemisphere head in a southerly direction. In June when the weather is warming, between 30 and 50 yachts will depart Seattle June 04, and arrive in Wrangell in Alaska on June 17, and the citizens of Wrangell are determined to put on a good show.
Wrangell, Alaska, waiting for the boats to arrive
The yachts will be participating in the Salty Dog Rally, sponsored by Boating Puget Sound, a website dedicated to yachting in the Seattle area.
Once they arrive, yachters will be welcomed by local Tlingit drummers and dancers and be feted in a gala dinner with the mayor. Borough officials estimate between 60 and 150 people will participate, though they won’t have official numbers until registration for the event concludes in April.
On the way the rally will stop in:
False Bay, Lasqueti Island, Canada
Campbell River, Canada
Port McNeill, Canada
Cape Caution, Canada
Bella Bella, Canada
Green Inlet, Canada
Prince Rupert, Canada
Members of the Wrangell Convention and Visitors Bureau board as well as the Economic Development committee have known about the Rally since the January 2013 Seattle Boat Show, but have withheld confirming details to the public in order to work up a list of activities yachters and their families will participate in when they arrive.
Additional legs of the journey will travel to Petersburg and Juneau.
The schedule of events is designed to allow participants to opt out of some events and participate in others, and flexibility may be crucial to allowing sailors weary from a multi-day trek along the coast of British Columbia.
Other planned activities include a bird walk, a golf tournament, a barbecue dinner, and tours of the city. The list of activities is drawn for a rough schedule provided to the Sentinel, but officials caution an exact schedule for the event – and many other details – may be subject to change.
'There’s a lot still to do, but that’s roughly sort of the schedule,' said borough economic development officer Carol Rushmore. 'It’s always subject to change.'
The event is good news for local businesses, which will play host not only to the yachters themselves, but also to the families of yachters, who often fly up to the official endpoint to meet the yachts as they come in, Rushmore said.
'If you have people flying in, if you have people even in the boats, they’re going to be paying harbor fees, they’re going to be paying hotel fees, they’re going to be eating in the restaurants, they’re going to be taking tours, absolutely it’s an economic boost,' she said.
'We’re excited,' she said. 'It’s all potential.'