Submitted by Thurston County Chamber of Commerce

Now in its 55th year, the Thurston County Chamber of Commerce will once again partner with the Olympia Yacht Club to host local military personnel at Foofaraw, an event unmatched anywhere else in the world.

After cheering military guests, participants gather near the new harbor security vessel.

Always the first Friday after Labor Day, we will be shoving off from the Olympia Yacht Club main station Friday, Sept. 8.

Foofaraw has gained in popularity with every passing year and is well-known throughout the United States Armed Forces. Yacht club members transport guests to Island Home, where the Yacht Club and the Chamber treat them to a full day of games and a terrific salmon barbecue lunch. Finally, local dignitaries honor the military personnel.

The event averages two service members to every one civilian.

For the last several years, the Port of Olympia has shown their gratitude of service to our military by arranging an unofficial send-off which includes representatives from local police, medic, and fire departments and always hanging a large American flag from one of their cranes.

Port of Olympia Foofaraw
Boats are bid farewell by a contingent of local first-responders.

One dictionary defines Foofaraw as “much ado about nothing” and, at one point in history the official “purpose” of the day, claimed that a “Foofarite [military attendee] has earned the right to say ‘Foof’ to all duties and responsibilities for one day each year.”

Sponsor tickets for this year’s event are limited and available to Chamber Members only. We are collecting donations for the free military raffle that takes place throughout the day.

For more information about Foofaraw or to make a donation, please call the Chamber at 360.357.3362. Thank you to our sponsor, America’s Credit Union.

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