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White Canvas Over Blue Water: 500 Years of Sailing Adventure
Wednesday, October 3, 2018 - 7:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Oracle Racing during the 2013 America’s Cup (Photo: Donan.Raven)
In 1607, three sailing ships commanded by Captain John Smith glided into the harbor of what is now Virginia Beach, bringing with them the first English settlers to the continent. Since these early days, great sailing ships—and the people who design, build, and crew these magnificent vessels—have shaped America’s development.
Join transportation expert Scott Hercik in an immersive exploration into these great sailing vessels, from those of the earliest explorers, through the end of the Golden Age of Sailing in the mid-19th century, to the high-tech and high-performance speedsters of today’s America’s Cup yacht race.
Begin at the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, Virginia, where tour guides share fascinating nautical tales and interpret artifacts that celebrate the spirit of the open seas. Learn how explorers discovered the world through shipbuilding, navigation, and cartography; trace the development of steam-powered ships; and get insights into the history of the U.S. Navy’s sea power. A lunchtime speaker recounts how Oracle Team USA stunned the sailing world in the 2013 America’s Cup by engineering one of the greatest come-from-behind victories in sporting history.
After lunch, visit the charming Watermen’s Museum in historic Yorktown for a guided tour, a museum dedicated to preserving the heritage of the watermen on the Chesapeake Bay.
Conclude the day by setting sail on board Alliance, a 105- foot, 3-masted, gaffed-rigged schooner for a 2-hour sailing adventure. And if you’re hearty, join the crew to help set the white-canvas sails as Alliance skims over the deep- blue waters of the York River and Chesapeake Bay.
Fringe stop at about 8:10 a.m.
Box lunch at the Mariners’ Museum included; bring warm outerwear; sailing is contingent on weather conditions.
Departs Mayflower Hotel, DeSales St side
1127 Connecticut Ave NW
Fringe: I-95 and Rt. 123 Commuter Lot