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Classic yacht fleet sets bearings for Little Norway

POULSBO — A whole new crew of sailors and sea captains is headed to the shores of Little Norway for the Classic Yacht Association’s 11th annual rendezvous at the Port of Poulsbo beginning Friday.

Visitors are welcome to experience the days of elegant yachting as they tour dozens of Puget Sound pleasure cruisers of CYA’s Pacific Northwest Fleet that will be anchoring down at Dock E from Sept. 21-23.

“Every year it seems to draw more people,” said event organizer John Jacobsen. “It will be the 11th rendezvous in Poulsbo. We feel like we’ve always been welcome there.”

Jacobsen said many of the vessels were built before or during World War II. The 1920s, ‘30s and ‘40s era boats range from 20 to 70 feet in length.

“Every boat is different,” he said. “You won’t see any two that are alike.”

Jacobsen said soft-soled shoes are recommended wear for anyone interested in boarding the yachts. Handouts describing the type, era and location of construction each boat represents will be provided.

“These are all pleasure yachts, not commercial or sailboats,” he said. “They’re fine, old power-driven vessels.”

The CYA has several fleets, the biggest of which is the Pacific Northwest Fleet. Jacobsen said many of the vessels’ owners are from Seattle, but as CYA grows, representatives from other areas of the region continue to join.

“It’s a growing organization,” Jacobsen said of CYA. “The Pacific Northwest fleet is by far the largest, because it goes without saying we’ve got the best water anywhere in the country.”

The Classic Yacht Rendezvous is sponsored by the Historic Downtown Poulsbo Association, as well as coordinated by the Port of Poulsbo. The classic yachts will be open for viewing, and some for boarding, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to noon Sunday. There is no cost to visitors.

The CYA is a nationwide organization dedicated to the promotion, preservation and maintenance of the classic crafts. Formed over 35 years ago, the organization currently boasts five fleets: the Southern California, Northern California, Alaska, Pacific Northwest and USA fleets. Each boat is owned and maintained by private individuals. Visit www.classicyacht.org for more information and a photo gallery of member yachts.

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