Every year the U.S. Navy is welcome to New York Harbor for Fleet Week. “Grey Ships” parade in and visit New York Harbor for several days. This year, in partnership with New York City’s own Operation Sail (OpSail) and to mark the Bicentennial Year of the start of the War of 1812 with England, Fleet Week was kicked off by two maritime parades. The first an international fleet of sail training vessels escorted by American sailing vessels. The second an international fleet of naval ships. The first fleet went up the Hudson River and turned around at the George Washington Bridge and proceeded down the Hudson River. The second fleet waited an hour and then proceeded up the Hudson River meeting the first fleet at the Aircraft Carrier INTREPID. As the two fleets passed each other the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels and other naval air craft flew overhead up the Hudson River.
The wind was light so presented no headaches to the sailing vessels. While cloudy and a bit hazy the visibility was pretty good across the width of the river. All in all the spectacle was spectacular!
PRIDE had a number of passengers who booked passage for the parade. Meanwhile PRIDE also had the Guest Crew from Baltimore sailing all of the way to Greenport, NY out at the tip of Long Island. Everyone helped the crew set all the sail. So PRIDE was one of the very few parading vessels that had most of the available sail up. Plus PRIDE had her cannons to pay proper respect to the hosting port of New York. Two guns for the World Financial Center and two guns for the dignitaries and special guests waiting at the Aircraft Carrier INTREPID. And just one more gun for the young kids aboard the Schooner MYSTIC WHALER. The kids were surprised but wanted another shot. The escorting USCG and New York Harbor Police requested no more gun shots. So be it. The guns shots were truly loud and all aboard PRIDE got a big kick out of them.
Now PRIDE is back inside North Cove Marina at the World Financial Center and everything is put away. All crew are now off on personal itineraries for the rest of the day. Tomorrow we get underway soon after 8 AM and head up the East River for the sail through Long Island Sound towards Greenport.
Jan C. Miles, Captain aboard Pride of Baltimore II