This Saturday, June 10 is the Shilshole Boatfest, a new festival at Shilshole Bay Marina that’s a celebration of all things boating. From 11am to 4pm, there will be free boat rides and lessons, family activities, a beer and win garden, and live music.
The free event is all about getting people out on the water, introducing people to the world of boating and how to boat safely. On-shore activities will include two sea-themed bounce houses, lawn games, music from Marina Christopher and The Side Project, and food trucks galore.
The organizers say people can try out boating in many forms – all for free:
- 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.
Other activities include tours of liveaboards, with owners on site available to talk about their on-water lifestyle and a water display from the Seattle Fire Boat just beyond the breakwater in Shilshole Bay at 2:30pm.
“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,” said Tracy McKendry, Director of Recreational Boating at the Port of Seattle said in a statement. “Something many people aren’t aware of is that you don’t even need to own a boat to get into boating. Several of our event partners will be able talk about these alternatives to boat ownership.”
The organizers say they’ll also be accepting donated old sails to the ReSail Project, which provides sails for developing countries in the South Pacific and as shelter for homeless here and in Mexico.
Photo credit: Port of Seattle, Don Wilson