First ever Shilshole Boatfest set for next month

Shilshole Bay Marina is celebrating its first-ever Shilshole Boatfest on June 10. The fun will kick off at 11 a.m. and last until 4 p.m.                                                                                                  

This free event will allow attendees to get out on a boat (or many), introduce them to people who can help them navigate how to get into boating (even without owning a boat), and how to boat safely.

After enjoying time on the water in the boats of their choice, the shoreside festival offers more fun for all with activities including two sea-themed bounce houses, lawn games for kids and adults, live music by Marina Christopher and The Side Project, food trucks, a beer and wine garden and many boating-related and Ballard community partner booths.

Visitors can try out boating in many forms (all are free of charge):

  • Sail with Sound Experience on the historic 133-foot schooner Adventuress. Two three-hour sails will be offered.
  • Take a cruise into Shilshole Bay and back on 20-40 foot sailboats from Sail Northwest, Seattle Sailing Club, and Windworks Sailing & Powerboating. Take the helm or help hoist a sail under the instruction of licensed skippers.
  • Experience the thrill of powerboating with a trip beyond the breakwater with rides by Freedom Boat Club Seattle.
  • Watch kids (ages six to 14) learn to sail as they receive instruction right in the marina on Opti dinghies with Corinthian Yacht Club.
  • Enjoy 20-minute test drives of kayaks and standup paddleboards from Ballard Kayak and Paddleboard.

Additional vessels will be available for viewing and boarding:

  • For those who have always wondered what it’s like to live on a boat, the Shilshole Liveaboard Association will have boats open for touring and their owners available to chat about their on-water lifestyle.
  • Learn how to enjoy Washington State’s marine parks and safe boating practices with their 23-foot, bright yellow, aluminum WALTER – Washington’s All-Equipped Law Enforcement Trailing and Education Resource boat.
  • And the ever-popular Seattle Fire Boat is scheduled to do a water display at 2:30 p.m. just beyond the breakwater in Shilshole Bay.

“For anyone thinking about getting into boating but doesn’t know how to start or what kind of boating they’d most enjoy, this is a great way to test the waters,” says Tracy McKendry, Director of Recreational Boating at the Port of Seattle.

Current boaters can donate old sails to the ReSail Project, which keeps old sails out of landfills by providing sails for developing countries in the south Pacific and shelter for homeless people here and in Mexico. Sails will be collected at the event as well as at Dockside Solutions the week leading-up to the event.

The event is produced by Shilshole Bay Marina with support from Ballard Kayak and Paddleboard, Freedom Boat Club Seattle, Sail Northwest, Seattle Sailing Club, Shilshole Liveaboard Association, Sound Experience aboard the Schooner Adventuress, and Windworks Sailing & Power Boating.

For a complete schedule of activities visit the official Shilshole Boatfest webpage.

For more information on Shilshole Bay Marina events visit Events and Races or visit Seattle’s Best Marinas for recreational boating opportunities.

Photo credit – Port of Seattle, Don Wilson.

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