Goodbye, Kenosha, Heads Up, Midland!

Pride of Baltimore II arriving in Kenosha, August 1, 2019, courtesy of Kenosha News

Photo: Pride of Baltimore II arriving in Kenosha, August 1, 2019, courtesy of Kenosha News

Date: Monday, August 5, 2019
Position: Sailing from Kenosha, Wisconsin, toward Midland, Ontario

The sixth festival weekend over a span of five weeks just now completed in style. Blessed with great weather, the public responded with enthusiasm to Kenosha’s own Tall Ships America Tall Ships Challenge® festival, which is great for Kenosha’s festival organizers. A lot of effort goes into setting such an event up. Well done!

And as is common practice with Pride of Baltimore II‘s departures, we took advantage of favorable winds, those being winds right from astern where Pride was tied up. So, with square-fore-topsail loosed from its harbor furl while still secure to the harbor wall, Chief Mate Jeff Crosby maneuvered the ship with her two engines and propellers to a point directly off the wall out in the middle of the harbor channel. With that getting away from the dock wall maneuver complete, he called for the setting of the square-fore-topsail. As soon as the clews were drawn out, even before the yard was hoisted, Jeff turned off the engines and with wind from aft, blowing on the rig and the stern, now also the spreading canvas of the square-fore-topsail, Pride advanced forward with increasing speed to the entrance of the harbor. Once outside and clear of breakwaters and any shoals and out into Lake Michigan, we turned toward the north and re-trimmed the square-fore-topsail for the southwest wind coming over the port quarter, the crew setting the fore-staysail and the foresail. Under “easy” canvas, Pride is gliding up Lake Michigan near its western shore. Squalls are promised. We will wait for them under less sail so that it is easy and quick to strike for the coming squalls.

Between Green Bay, festival number five, and Kenosha, there was the third and last race for this year’s Tall Ship Challenge®. Participants were Denis Sullivan, Niagara, and Pride of Baltimore II.

The whole race was a light wind reach or run. During the reaching wind phase, all vessels were enjoying a easy sail. Once sails were trimmed, it was “steer small” and proceed down the race track. But when the wind drew aft sometime after midnight the first night, around the one-third point in the 125-odd-nautical-mile race, plenty of sail handling started and continued through the rest of the race.

The light winds had the characteristic of being fickle and capricious. What was at one point a working very broad reach angle of wind for power and speed, through careful sail trimming from the most recent change in wind character, would suddenly change for no apparent reason at all and make for slower sailing, forcing another round of adjustments. But not always only sail adjustments. A number of totally changing of sides for the wind to come over for the best direction toward finishing the race. Jibing and wearing-ship started to happen. Pride’s crew jibed her five times over the span of the 18 hours that it took to reach the finish.

As it so happens, being in the right place at the right time and having the right stuff, Pride was captured by a photographer in Kenosha just as she was approaching the finish line. The photo was published in online Kenosha news publications. For the locals, one could tell where the shot was taken due to the foreground view of Kenosha’s harbor entrance lighthouse-like towers with their distinctive white with red or green middle field, depending on being located on the right during entrance, or on the left. Red to the right side. Green to the left side. (I think I saw it was the red one in the photo.) Meanwhile, in the background, big enough and sharp focused enough to see that Pride’s sails were drawing well. Plus, for those that know, that strange extra sail out to the far side of the big square topsail is the studding sail.

A great way to mark the end of a busy race in light winds.

Outcome? Learned Saturday during the crew party that Pride took first, Niagara second, and Denis Sullivan third. Lots of work by all the crew. My compliments to all.

Now ‘tis off toward Midland, Ontario, for tall ship festival number seven at the end of week six.

Captain Jan C. Miles

Busy 2019 Great Lakes Tall Ship Festival Schedule

Photo: Pride of Baltimore II at the 2019 Tall Ship Celebration in Bay City, Michigan, July 21, 2019, by Great Lakes Drone Works

Date: Monday, July 22, 2019
Position: Bay City, Michigan

The heat is upon us all. Even here in the Great Lakes port town of Bay City on the Saginaw River. Just about the whole nation is in a significant heatwave. So it’s a hot festival. 😎

Bay City is festival port weekend number four in three weeks, starting with Toronto’s weekend tall ship festival, followed by Buffalo’s, followed by Cleveland’s, now Bay City’s.

There have been two tall ship Races. The first was on Lake Ontario between the first summer weekend festival in Toronto and the second summer weekend festival in Buffalo. Then on western Lake Erie between the third summer weekend festival in Cleveland and the fourth summer weekend festival in Bay City.

The fifth summer weekend festival will be in Green Bay. Followed by the sixth summer weekend festival in Kenosha. The seventh summer weekend festival will be in Midland, Ontario, for a part of the fleet; another part of the fleet will be in Sarnia, Ontario, across the St. Clair River from Port Huron, Michigan. Summer weekend number eight will be in Kingsville, Ontario, on Lake Erie — a small harbor that will only have a small portion of the fleet. Yet a different part of the fleet is skipping the options on weekends number seven and eight (Midland/Sarnia and Kingsville) and instead going to Duluth from Kenosha for a separate and unaligned port festival rendezvous. Most of the port festivals are part of a series under the umbrella of Tall Ships America. This series is called TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE® Great Lakes 2019.

For the eighth summer weekend, Pride II will go her own separate way and spend a “long weekend” on Lake Charlevoix, Boyne City, Michigan. Come summer weekend number nine, Pride will be underway, bound for Brockville, Ontario, for summer weekend festival number ten. Those vessels that went to Duluth will have returned in time to rendezvous with the greater fleet for summer weekend number nine in Erie, Pennsylvania. Some of the Erie fleet will meet Pride in Brockville. The tenth summer weekend is Labor Day weekend, the symbolic end of summer, the last formal port call of Pride’s Great Lakes tour, and the beginning of her voyage toward home. Starting with going down the St. Lawrence River, then on in to the Atlantic and around Nova Scotia to the American East Coast.

Anyone tired yet? More likely confused. ‘Tis a pretty complicated summer.

The hosts of each of these port festivals are very activist minded. There are liaisons for each ship for every day in port. Squads of volunteers for each festival day are tasked with public crowd control and preserving festival security in partnership with individual ship security preserved by ships crews. There is coordination of ship logistics, like pumping out waste water and supplying fuel if needed; assistance with a myriad of ship errands; keeping up with informing ship personnel of parties in their honor; and services such as showers. Of course, coordination with the United States Coast Guard and local marine police forces regarding parades of sail, entry, mooring, and maintaining external security of the assembled vessels is always required.

As can be imagined, festivals are all-day affairs: overnight security of all the venues within festival grounds, daylong management of public interest and safety, daylong availability of emergency services. This list is only the tip of the iceberg of requirements. Leading up to such festivals are years and months and back-to-back days of fundraising and planning.

After the summer is over, a tally from the participating vessels “grading” of each port will occur. At some point, a port festival will be identified as the one that satisfied vessels the most. There is a great deal of hope in each port to be named the most satisfying by the fleet.

Monday, July 22, as I finish this log up, Pride is the first of the fleet to depart Bay City. The wind is against us in Saginaw Bay. So it is best to get over to Lake Huron and the more open expanse of that lake to see about getting some sailing in … Maybe around mid-afternoon.

Captain Jan C. Miles

Captain's Log – En Route Toward Great Lakes… Depart Baltimore



As I write this first log of the Great Lakes Campaign of 2016 the wind is blowing blustery northwesterly 20-25 knots with gusts to 35 knots. PRIDE is making around 9 knots with peaks of 10-11 knots during gusts sailing under reduced canvass of just three sails. The double reefed mainsail the full foresail and the full fore-staysail (the first of the ship’s three jibs). One watch is below and off-duty and the other is aloft putting a reef in the square topsail in preparation of possible future use.


PRIDE spent the night at anchor near Baltimore Light after a hectic start to departure day. News media on board at the start and cannon salutes in the midst of setting sail on a lovely clear and somewhat cooler and less muggy day than has been around for several days. The forecast cold front was slightly slower arriving than anticipated. Knowing there would be fresh and favorable winds for today thus the chance to get a lot of mileage accomplished during one daylight day, I saw an opportunity to sail to anchor for the night and provide all aboard with time to adjust and settle in.


This morning with a dawn wake up, the crew and Guest Crew hauled back the anchor and with a favorable westerly wind of moderate strength steadily set sail before breakfast. Full mainsail, foresail and square topsail and all three jibs. With a forecast of strengthening wind left stowed the main-gaff-topsail. After passing under the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and passing Annapolis PRIDE was happily making around 9 knots with a mostly westerly wind. Stood the crew into two watches sending one below at 10 AM. Around late morning the promised stronger winds came up as the ship was passing entrances to both the Choptank and Little Choptank Rivers just below Sharp’s Island. The on watch started reducing sail. Struck the jib-topsail. Then the square-fore-topsail. Then the jib. Near lunch time for the off-watch they joined in with double reefing the mainsail.


It is now just after lunch and the ship is passing the mouth of the Patuxant River as the square-topsail is being reefed. Meanwhile the ship is making toward the mouth of the Potomac River and the turn into the Lower Chesapeake Bay at Smith Point Light. Where will we end up tonight? I’ve been thinking of Mobjack Bay. It is my desire to be anchored and stowed by dark…if not sooner. The question will be where to drop the anchor. I would also like a minimum water current location in the lee of some nearby shore. We shall see where we end up and when.

Pride II Departs for the Great Lakes

Pride of Baltimore II, America’s Star-Spangled Ambassador, proudly announces its departure from Baltimore’s Inner Harbor in the morning of Tuesday, June 7, 2016, for a four-month voyage along the East Coast to the Great Lakes. The tall ship’s mission is to promote Maryland’s economic interests to ports around the U.S. and Canada, as well as participate in the Tall Ships Challenge® Great Lakes 2016, which involves several sailing races throughout the summer. This marks the first time Pride II has left the Chesapeake Bay since 2013.


“In addition to participation in tall ship festivals throughout the Great Lakes, Pride IIwill also play an economic development role, ” says Rick Scott, Executive Director. “Through a recent partnership with the state of Maryland, Pride II will promote economic development and tourism for the state during her voyage to the Great Lakes this summer.”


Around 9 am, with her beautiful sails unfurled, Pride II will make a farewell voyage around the Inner Harbor and fire her cannons. The ship will travel past Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine, one of several vantage points for both photographers and the general public to bid farewell before Pride II‘s return in early October. Pride II‘s exact departure time will be determined according to the weatheron Tuesday; please call Laura Rodini at 202-669-3065 or email for up-to-the minute information.


Optimal Viewing Locations for Media Coverage

Tide Point: View of Pride II approaching/passing by with Fells Point in the background.
Fells Point/Broadway Pier: View of Pride II approaching/passing by with Tide Point in the background.
Fells Point/Thames Street Area: View of Pride II passing by with Domino Sugar and Federal Hill in view.
Federal Hill (on actual hill): Full view of Pride II turning around in the Inner Harbor.

Fort McHenry: View of Pride II approaching/passing by with Key Bridge in background.


WEBSITEPride II will then sail 180 nautical miles south to Norfolk, Virginia, to participate in Norfolk Harborfest, America’s largest, longest-running, free maritime festival taking place from June 9 to 12, 2016. For more information about Norfolk Harborfest, visit this link.


Pride II will voyage north along the east coast, and then enter the St. Lawrence Seaway through a series of locks on her way to the Great Lakes in order to participate in the Tall Ships Challenge® Great Lakes 2016. “We are excited to take Pride II out of her home waters for the first time in several years,” says Captain Jan Miles. “Pride of Baltimore II is Maryland’s working symbol of the great natural resources and spectacular beauty of the Chesapeake Bay region, and a reminder of America’s rich maritime heritage. Pride II has a huge national and international following for her beauty, prowess and marketing ability, and we look forward to showcasing that.”


Pride II will race against other tall ships in each of the five freshwater lakes, making for heart-stopping events that tens of thousands of visitors will witness. Her unique design makes Pride II one of the most beloved and recognizable U.S. sailing vessels in the entire world.


On board Pride II, there will be professional photographers and videographers to capture the spirit of the moments and transmit images back to Pride II’s Baltimore headquarters.


Pride II will make stops in Toronto, Ontario, Fairport Harbor, Ohio, Bay City, Michigan, Chicago, Illinois, Green Bay, Wisconsin, Duluth, Minnesota, Erie, Pennsylvania, and Brockville, Ontario, with the possibility of an additional port to be announced. For more information about the Tall Ships Challenge® Great Lakes 2016, visit this link.


At each port, Pride II will offer free deck tours and, in some ports, offer day sails for the general public. She will also host business receptions, as Pride II represents Maryland’s economic development interests throughout North America. Tens of thousands of visitors are expected to cross her decks this summer.


In January 2016, Pride II announced a public-private partnership with the state of Maryland to promote economic development for the state and the city of Baltimore. Announcing the new partnership, Governor Larry Hogan said, “Pride of Baltimore II is a wonderful symbol of the rich maritime heritage of both our state and Baltimore, and the ship generates extremely valuable exposure and goodwill wherever she goes. We are pleased to have a new partnership with the Pride to have her help carry our message across the state, nation and globe—that Maryland is great place to do business.”

Pride II will be reporting back on its progress.


PRIDE in Nantucket

Two 1812 War Baltimore Schooner Privateers, a fleet of classic racing yacht 12 Meter America’s Cup sailing vessels, a fleet of classic yacht International One Design (IOD) sailing vessels and numerous classic yacht sailing vessels marked by the presence of the only New York Yacht Club “50” footer to survive from the early 20th Century SPARTAN have been mingling daily this week. The iconic Privateer PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II and the smaller yachting version LYNX have been marking their presence by salutes of gun (cannon) fire. An enhancement to the gathering that seems to be well enough received despite the shock of the sudden loud reports.

To accommodate all of these vessels, as well as visiting yachts of all kinds to one of the East Coast’s summer yachting meccas, it is necessary that the larger vessels seeking access to a dock (rather than anchor out) must “Med-moor”. A form of both anchoring and tying up to a dock common in the Mediterranean Sea, Med-moor is a stern-to the dock orientation using anchors forward and dock-lines aft with gangways extended over or out of the stern. This is a somewhat awkward mooring method for PRIDE. Her stern bulwark, or transom, must be climbed over and her gangway must be attached at the top of the back of the transom. Some special modifications were arranged with the assistance of past builders of PRIDE II, Paul Powichroski and Gary (Leroy) Suroski of Baltimore. The system of quick and easy to install & remove steps to get up and down from the transom rail-cap works very well. The new brackets for hanging the gangway work dependably. The whole assembly works perfectly.

What is iffy about this type of mooring is the vagaries of the wind. A change of the wind blowing on one side to another or from either the bow or the stern to one side send the bow off-center and make for a pivoting reality that risks jamming the gangway against a piling and possibly begin to tear it off the transom. Maybe this could be prevented by the use of two anchors spread to either side of the bow. But anyone familiar with “traditional” crew-driven anchor hauling systems will know such a system is a tremendous amount of work…especially when sailing everyday…and sometimes twice a day! So we are for the moment hoping to stick with only one anchor.

PRIDE’s welcome to Nantucket is one of sincere appreciation for the history she represents. But what is most complimentary is the appreciation for such a world renowned American sailing vessel paying Nantucket a visit. PRIDE OF BALTIMORE II thanks Nantucket very much for the sincere welcome! More specifically, I would like to thank the Nantucket Community Sailing Association and Nantucket Boat Basin.

In addition I would like to thank Panerai, the high quality Italian watch manufacturer for the opportunity given to PRIDE to assist in honoring cancer victims and their medical staff through the charity organization ‘Sailing Heals’ of New York and their relationship with the Nantucket Hospital.

Meanwhile PRIDE has been host to Maryland families who summer in Nantucket. Last night’s evening reception with these families, which included ESPN sailing commentator Gary Jobson, and many of their Nantucket friends, seemed to be much enjoyed; especially with the visit of Sgt. Mike Fraser of the U.S. Marines, a wounded veteran of 3 tours in Iraq and a tour in Afghanistan, who assisted PRIDE’s crew with the gun salute at evening colors. Sunday PRIDE will take many of these Maryland families, including Sgt. Fraser, will sail aboard PRIDE, partaking in the exhibition start of two PRIVATEERS to be performed prior to the official start of the 40th Anniversary of the Nantucket Opera House Cup Regatta. With both PRIVATEERS discharging guns throughout the exhibition, it ought to be quite the spectacle. If not, certainly noisy and smokey!

Jan C. Miles, Captain
Acting Executive Director

Nantucket Bound

The weather is light & the sea slight. Motoring along at around 6.5-7.0 knots, PRIDE is making her way south from Bath, Maine on the Kennebec River and her weekend visit at the Maine Maritime Museum toward the Massachusetts island of Nantucket, near Cape Cod. Her route is through the western side of the Gulf of Maine and along the outside of “The Cod”…to others…The Cape. This route will pass nearby or over such underwater locations as PASTURE, POLLOCK HUB, DOGGETT RIDGE, SAGADAHOC, MISTAKEN GROUND, PLATT’S BANK, JEFFREYS LEDGE, TILLIES BANK, WILDCAT KNOLL, MURAY BASIN and of course STELLWAGEN BANK, “summer feeding home” for whale. These underwater names come from fishing history. Famous fish like Cod Fish.

We got underway a day late due to the weather. In this instance light & dry weather. Yesterday the crew worked on cosmetics…namely painting the lower third of the above water hull…the lower topsides. (The upper topsides had been attended to during the “lay day” time scheduled last week in Portland.) Other cosmetic work on deck was also done. Like patch varnishing, de-rust-streaking and patch painting. Outside in the Gulf of Maine wind was forecast to be stronger than today while promising light conditions for today. So we took advantage of smooth river water and dry conditions yesterday to get a lot of near the waterline painting on the hull done.

Today as PRIDE motors along in light winds and relatively smooth sea each of the watches in turn are attending to additional on deck cosmetics as they steer PRIDE along. What is all the effort for cosmetics? True, we are always attending to maintenance all season long. The focus we have right now is the Classic Yacht Regatta PRIDE will be a part of in Nantucket this week and coming weekend. Unlike most of the attending yachts, PRIDE will have been working hard all sailing season since early April traveling from as far south as Savannah to as far northeast as Halifax, hosting thousands of visitors nearly every weekend, as well as sailing and racing distances between ports. The sailing and the visitors take a toll on PRIDE’s paint and varnish. While we generally attend to cosmetics as needed all season long, our pride drives us to see if we can get PRIDE looking her best “now”, when she will be amongst the classiest vessels yachting provides. Vessels that for the most part do not welcome visitors by the thousands while also sailing thousands of miles.

Besides, this will also be PRIDE’s first visit to Nantucket in decades and many Marylanders take summer holiday there. We want them to be as proud of their PRIDE as we and many others are in all the ports she has visited these 24 years.

Jan C. Miles, Captain
Acting Executive Director