Port Townsend

Southbound in Increments

Southbound in Increments

I have been making a list of all the pros and cons of different scenarios, the good, the bad and the ugly! They include San Diego, South Africa, Port Townsend, in various configurations. And how I can make them work. I have to look at all different aspects, including community, costs, transportation, security, location, weather, internet, and even political conditions.

Everyone Loves the Rhody Parade

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[et_pb_section admin_label="section"][et_pb_row admin_label="row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_image admin_label="Image" src="http://grannytravels.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/image.jpeg" show_in_lightbox="off" url_new_window="off" use_overlay="off" animation="left" sticky="off" align="left" force_fullwidth="off" always_center_on_mobile="on" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] [/et_pb_image][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Small-town America! What fun the Rhody Parade was this weekend. It's years since I made the effort to go and it was so worth it, despite the drizzle!

The Rhododendron Festival has been a huge event in Port Townsend for close to (if not this year) eighty years! With its Royalty, from tiny tots to octogenarians, pet parades and other community events, it starts the summer festival season. The Parade is the highlight Iin my opinion) with Lawrence Street uptown lined with chairs and place markers for hours before the around noon start!

This year I was one of the lucky ones, being invited to a party at a gorgeous house right on the route! So front row viewing positions for the event, which started off with big, burley guys on their Harley's clearing the street for the fire engines, police cars and too-man-to-mention local school marching bands. Present and past Royalty cruised the route in classic cars, decked out in tiaras and finery!

[su_youtube url="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gI7yDqUI6xc" width="760"]Of course, the kids along the route probably had more fun than anyone! Candy was being dispensed with abandon from the floats and parents gave up trying to monitor it! Many were fascinated, dancing and jiggling in time (kind of!) to the different rythyms emanating from the parade, and I can just imagine them going home, declaring that they are going to be a drummer/trumpeter/Pom-Pom girl (or boy) or the Rhody Queen riding the float in all her glory!

Every float and vehicle was decorated with rhododendrons in some way - and the marching bands had sprays of blossomed attached the instruments; trucks had garlands festooning the grills; classic car mirrors sported bunches ranging from our local "common" pale pink, to deep purples, many matching the paint colors of the cars! The theme was Rockin' Rhody so a very 50s theme prevailed, along with the rock and roll that blasted out from all the floats.

I am so glad I went - it made me want to go to more local events! After all, I can hardly be called Granny Travels if I don't get my sorry butt out there!

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Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival 2015

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Boats used to be pretty much my whole life - I worked on them, sailed and cruised on them, then wrote about them and photographed them. I guess I got burned out, but it sure was fun to immerse myself in them again - for a short while this weekend.

The 39th Annual Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival this year, and every year is on the second weekend of September. More often than not, it is cold, gray, wet and windy. But this weekend was amazing! Mid-70s, sunny, a light breeze - perfect. Brought the spectators and visitors out in droves.

wooden boat festival 20155As usual, Point Hudson Marina was jammed with boats of all sizes, shapes, colors and vintage. There were small home-built sailboats and rowboats; schooners, ketches and sloops side-tied at every dock and slip. Trawlers and classic power boats like Deerleap, shared fenders and boarding ladders. There were acres of varnished teak, tons of polished brass glittering in the sun. What a pleasure!

Most of the boats on show are ones I have seen and boarded many times. I was happy to see Spike Africa, a beautiful schooner built in Costa Mesa, California in the mid-70s by Bobbie Sloan, a well-loved mariner in Southern California. I remember watching the boat being built in a vacant lot next to his house, and once launched, going aboard and accidentally losing a prized pocket knife in the bilge! I expect it's still there!

My old boat, the Wild Rose, was not there and is not on the Classic Yacht Register so I wonder what happened to her and where she is? It sounds like a project to me - tracking her down and making sure she is in good hands.

In recent years, the Festival has grown and is now produced under the auspices of the Northwest Maritime Center. It includes seminars, classes, yacht races, rowing races and kids' activities. But thank goodness, the hippy, Port Townsend funk is still very apparent

And long may it continue.

Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival 431 Water Street Port Townsend, WA 98368 Phone 360.385.3628 ext 104 Fax 360.385.4742 E-mail: info@nwmaritime.org