Tall ships to visit Cleveland in July | Events
CLEVELAND, OH - A fleet of tall ships from around the world will again visit Cleveland this summer to participate in the Port of Cleveland 2013 Tall Ships Festival. Beginning on Wednesday, July 3, with the Parade of Sail, the festival will run until Sunday, July 7, at the Port of Cleveland docks, just north of First Energy Stadium, Home of the Cleveland Browns. Sponsored by the Cleveland-Cuyahoga Port Authority and presented by the Rotary Club of Cleveland, the event will feature five days of family-oriented fun.
“On behalf of the members of the Rotary Club of Cleveland, let me say how proud and thrilled we are to be able to bring the Tall Ships back to Cleveland,“ said Mikel B. Harding, a past president of the Rotary Club and chair of the 2013 Tall Ships Festival. The Tall Ships last visited Cleveland in 2010 when the Rotary Club of Cleveland organized the festival to celebrate the Club’s centennial year. Serving as honorary co-chair of the 2013 festival is Charles (Arnie) de la Porte, who is a past honorary president of the Rotary Club of Cleveland and the Honorary Consul for the Consulate of the Netherlands.
Before and after the visit to Cleveland, the ships will be participating in the Tall Ships Challenge® Great Lakes 2013 race series, which has been organized as part of the celebration this summer of the 200th anniversary of the major military events of the War of 1812 that took place in the Great Lakes. Dedicated to promoting awareness of the Great Lakes’ ecosystems and fresh water conservation, the race series will sail to all five Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway, according to Tall Ships America (formerly the American Sail Training Association), which is the organizer of the tall ships race series. The Cleveland stop in the race series will be the first one in the United States. Among other cities on the race itinerary are Toronto, Ontario; Bay City, Michigan; Duluth, Minnesota; Chicago, Illinois; Green Bay, Wisconsin; and Erie, Pennsylvania.
From July 4-7, festival attendees of all ages will be able to climb aboard the ships and relive their colorful histories through the wonderful stories told by the onboard hosts. Special exhibits, a Maritime Market Place, and “sail-away” cruise opportunities will also be featured. The festival will have special extended hours on July 4 so that festival goers can view the City of Cleveland’s 4th of July fireworks display, which will take place on the lakefront from 10:00-10:25 p.m. Live entertainment will be provided, and tickets after 5:00 pm will be just $5.
Children in attendance at the festival will enjoy the special entertainment that will be offered, including musicians, roving bands of “pirates,” jugglers, magicians, a balloon artist, and face painters. Radio Disney will present two shows on Friday afternoon, July 5, on the outdoor festival stage. An entertainment tent will provide shade and seating and continuous entertainment, including Bob Ford & the Ragamuffins, a musical group that will provide nautically themed music, humor, and family-oriented fun. Also scheduled for the entertainment tent will be some a speaker who will talk about “Ohio and the War of 1812,” with an emphasis on the Battle of Lake Erie.
For some selected high school students in the Cleveland area, the event will afford them an opportunity to spend time aboard the ships as part of the Rotary Club’s YESS (Youth Empowered to Succeed through Sailing) program. Founded in 2010, YESS is a youth sail-training program for “at-risk” students that will involve leadership training before the festival as well as on-board sailing experiences before, during, and after the event.
As the host site for the event, the Port of Cleveland is ideally suited to showcase visiting historic vessels. Managed by the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority, the Port of Cleveland’s maritime activities help sustain the regional economy in Northeast Ohio by keeping local industries connected to the world and directly and indirectly supporting over 17,000 jobs that generate some $1.08 billion a year in personal incomes, $1.51 billion in business revenue, and $112.3 million in state and local taxes. Area manufacturers rely on the port to help deliver their locally-made products to U.S. and foreign markets and to obtain low-cost delivery of raw materials.
Founded in 1910 and now in its second century of service in Northeast Ohio, the Rotary Club of Cleveland was the 18th Rotary Club to be chartered, and is one of over 34,000 Rotary Clubs located in more than 200 countries and geographical areas around the world. Like all Rotary Clubs, the Rotary Club of Cleveland is a group of business, professional and community leaders—men and women—who provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace in the world. The Rotary motto is “Service Above Self.” For more information about the Rotary Club of Cleveland, call 216-556-8637 or visit the club’s website at www.rotaryclubofcleveland.com.
Tickets for the Port of Cleveland 2013 Tall Ships Festival are on sale now through the festival website at www.clevelandtallships.com. Festival tickets are $12 in advance; $14 at the gate; $11 for seniors, groups, Rotarians, and the Military; $8 for children ages 6 to 14; and free to those 5 and under. Discount tickets are also available at all Discount Drug Mart locations and at Petitti’s Garden Centers. More information on the 2013 Tall Ships Festival can be obtained at www.clevelandtallships.com.