Submitted by Olympia Yacht Club

Saturday May 13 is the annual South Sound Opening Day of Boating Season Celebration held in downtown Olympia at points along Percival Landing and all residents are invited to attend.  Sponsored by the Olympia Yacht Club (OYC), Opening Day is a ceremony and celebration that marks the traditional start of the boating season in the South Sound.  It has been held for decades in the South Sound and similar ceremonies happen in other marine cities throughout the Pacific Northwest.  Key elements of South Sound Opening Day include live music, the ceremony and Blessing of the Fleet, and a decorated boats parade along the downtown Olympia shoreline.

One of the decorated boats from last year’s South Sound Opening Day of Boating Season Celebration sponsored by the Olympia Yacht Club.

The celebration starts about 9:30 a.m. when the American Legion Band begins playing on the deck of the Olympia Yacht Club located at 201 Simmons Street.  At 10:00 a.m. a half hour ceremony gets underway and includes a Blessing of the Fleet.  Attendees of the ceremony are the Olympia Lakefair Court and local dignitaries.  The best vantage point to watch the American Legion Band and ceremony is the Percival Landing Boardwalk near the OYC and Bayview Thriftway.

The Parade of Decorated boats begins at 12:00 p.m. and features both power and sail boats as little as 20 feet and as large as 55 feet from the South Sound.  The Lakefair Court is embarked on the Judge’s boat and help award prizes for categories such as Best Theme Boat, Best Power Boat and Best Sail Boat.  An ideal place to watch the start of the Parade of Boats is the Port Plaza Park near Anthony’s Restaurant.  After starting near Port Plaza Park the Parade heads out further into West Bay before circling back to return to the Port Plaza Park and Percival Landing.

South Sound residents and families interested in Olympia’s beautiful marine environment or decorated boats should make the time to attend this long standing maritime tradition on Saturday May 13. For more information, visit the Olympia Yacht Club’s website

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