By Stephen L. Swann
Our books for 2012 are now closed, and the Port has experienced another good year.
Although January is expected to be relatively quiet, with only one yacht club, the Queen City Yacht Club, scheduled to visit this month, the pace will increase as we move into 2013 and kinder weather. In February, four clubs with reservations for seventy slips are expected.
Among numerous accomplishments by the Port in 2012, we’ll list just a few.
Weekend boat traffic in 2012, by individuals and yachting groups, increased. In November and December, D Dock commercial fish sales to the public provided our community with salmon, halibut and cod right off the boat at great prices.
The Port connected two more docks to the city’s sanitary sewer system. Additionally, two new portable pump-out carts were brought online, and are capable of pumping any vessel in any of the marina’s locations.
The derelict vessel problem has been successfully reduced by transferring at least four junkers to Seattle’s Delta Shipyard. The fifth vessel — the subject of an unsuccessful appeal by its owner — hopefully has been removed from the Port as of this writing. The city’s Police Department is to be congratulated for its efforts, in concert with our Port manager working with the Department of Natural Resources to provide temporary moorage at the Port.
In October, the Port of Poulsbo was invited to join the Poulsbo Marketing Coalition, a highly-energized group representing local business and civic organizations. This organization, which includes City Hall, the Historic Downtown Poulsbo Association and our Chamber of Commerce, works to promote Poulsbo and to coordinate the many events planned for the new year.
The Poulsbo Yacht Club’s Christmas Boat Parade on Dec. 14 illuminated the marina and Waterfront Park. On Dec. 17, approximately 540 passengers embarked on the Argosy Cruise Line’s three Christmas ships. I understand it was a sell out.
Guests were entertained by young ladies performing Christmas carols during the two-hour voyage to Keyport and back. For those ashore along Liberty Bay, this floating concert and parade of decorated vessels provided a special treat.
Some of the most exciting news for 2013 was the announcement by American Cruise Lines of its inclusion of the Port of Poulsbo in its cruise schedule for the M/V American Spirit. Beginning in early May, this 205-foot ship will visit Poulsbo each week on Friday mornings. Its passengers will be tendered into the marina from anchorage.
We will provide details before the inaugural visit; planning for a big Poulsbo welcome by residents and merchants is already in the works.
You may not be aware that the Port of Poulsbo, now over 60 years old, is a public agency charged with promoting economic development for Poulsbo’s Port District. We have three elected commissioners, as do 70 of the other 75 port districts in Washington. Each port district is distinct and ranges is size from mini-marinas to the gigantic Port of Seattle.
Poulsbo is most fortunate to have a first-class marina and fuel depot for recreational and commercial vessels, as well as a FAA-approved float plane landing zone and dock at the foot of Waterfront Park. We have 380 slips to accommodate permanent and visitor moorage, shoreside heads and laundry, and a floating conference room available for Port and community meetings.
The Port District covers roughly one-half of the City of Poulsbo’s city limits. On Liberty Bay, the Port’s jurisdiction generally is limited to the marina itself.
A “Scuttlebutt” was an early shipboard precursor of the modern water fountain. The terms scuttle (a rumor) and butte (water cask) later combined to identify shipboard gossip passed around the water-filled hogshead.
The commissioners and employees of the Port of Poulsbo (www.portofpoulsbo.com) wish you a safe and prosperous New Year. Bring your friends and families down to the Port and Poulsbo’s waterfront; most of our docks are open to the public, and we are here for you.
— Stephen L. Swann is a Port of Poulsbo commissioner. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.