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Happy Bi-Centennial New Year

Saturday, 31 December, 2011

Pride of Baltimore II, snug in and “quiet ship” for the Holidays
At her Winter Berth, South Clinton Street, Baltimore

Here at Pride of Baltimore, Inc. we hope you and your families are having the best of Holidays. This week, Pride of Baltimore II is on her first vacation of 2011. The industrial sector of Baltimore’s Canton neighborhood might not be the ideal vacation spot for a schooner that has traveled as far and as wide as Pride II, but at least she is getting a well earned and much needed rest. The racket of sanders and caulking mallets has fallen silent, the last coats of varnish and tar dry in private, with on one around to smell their aromatic solvents wafting into cold air. The winter crew are all home with their families, and Pride II quietly awaits a new year.

She might reflect on 2011 while she’s at it. This full and challenging year saw Pride II make her 13th voyage to the Great Lakes, once again hailing at the Inland-Most Port in world of Duluth, Minnesota as well as visiting new or rarely frequented ports such as Rochester, New York, Marquette, Boyne City, and Ludington Michigan and Amhurstburg and Hamilton, Ontario. Sailing over 9000 nautical miles and hosting nearly 45,000 visitors for public tours and daysails, Pride II gained more than a few new friends. She also lost a great friend with the passing of former Baltimore Mayor, Maryland Govenor and long-time supporter William Donald Schaeffer.

Now, on the War of 1812’s Bicentennial Eve, the ship may be quiet, that won’t last for long. Even now, things are in motion – itineraries are being hammered out, appearances arranged for the ship as she figures to be center stage in the events commemorating the war that largely defined a young America. At Pride, Inc. we expect the coming year to be chock full of events and relentless in activity.

What’s most exciting about this tour de force is we’re bringing all of you readers, supporters, friends and volunteers along with us. Literally speaking, there will be a number of guest crew and daysail opportunities in 2012, but I speak figuratively as well. Just as the “Star-Spangled Banner” wasn’t written for the defenders of Fort McHenry alone, Pride II doesn’t arrive in port with just her crew, or just her mission of Chesapeake Bay and American Maritime History. She carries with her the message that she is the boat of her supporters – you folks – from the Chesapeake and from the great community of Maritime History Enthusiasts worldwide.

We at Pride, Inc. thank you for your support and encourage you to spread the word: in her 24th year, Pride II is reaching her prime. Let’s make 2012 not just a Happy New Year, but also a momentous one!

Happy New Year to You and Yours!

Captain Jamie Trost, the crew of Pride II and the staff of Pride, Inc.