This past weekend we participated in the Second Annual Bellingham Bay Rendezvous — a festival put on by the Whatcom Maritime Association to promote Bellingham’s maritime past and its current vibrant waterfront. It got its name, in part, because it brings together a group of charter boats that spend their time in the waters of the Salish Sea. It’s not often that so many boats from NW Windjammers, whale watch boats, water taxis, historic power boats and runabouts have a chance to get together in one place specifically to show off our boats.
Schooner race in Bellingham.
For me it’s always blast to spend time at a boat show. I love that there is a mix of people just looking around, plus boat owners and crews. Whenever we are in a place where we can show the boat, I find that it’s the passion and excitement in exchanging sea stories that makes events like the Rendezvous so much fun for me. I love to talk about the David B and can do so for hours at a time, but I also really love to listen to how other people’s lives were changed by spending time on boats, and I always feel honored that people come up to me and tell me a little something about boats that made a difference in their lives.
Schooner race during the Bellingham Bay Rendezvous.
One the highlights of the weekend that brought all the attending boats together was a sailboat race on Bellingham Bay. Our part of the race was that the David B_ got to be the windward mark and San Juan Cruises’ _Victoria Star was the starting mark. It was such a beautiful sight to see Schooners Zodiac_, _Mycia_, _Suva_, _Dirigo II_, _Pleiades_, _Mallory Todd_, _Rapture and the yawl _Orion_ all out sailing. Even though the race was not intended to be competitive, there were any number of bribes we were offered and pranks that were suggested we play to make the race more spirited.
A note from Orion’s crew to help sway us to shorten the course for us.
What I appreciated most about the Bellingham Bay Rendezvous was the camaraderie that developed over the weekend. It’s rare for this group of boats to meet up because so much of our time is focused on either getting ready for the season or being out with our passengers. When we do run across each other in the summer months, we make small talk on the radio, but this weekend was a time where we got to talk to one another and learn what makes our fleet unique. When the Rendezvous was over and the David B was back at our slip, I thought about how aptly named the festival was. Not only did it bring our charter boat community together, but it also brought together the greater community of people who love boats and boating. I’m already looking forward to next year’s Rendezvous, and I have a feeling lots of other people are, too.
Author (Christine Smith), Schooner Zodiac’s first mate, Chris Wallace, and Schooner Mycia’s captain Darcey Peterson.
Check out Christine’s book about rebuilding the David B- More Faster Backwards.