Classic Boat Festival packs Victoria’s Inner Harbour with most participants in 15 years

Classic Boat Festival packs Victoria's Inner Harbour with most participants in 15 years

The Classic Boat Festival is making its long-awaited return to Victoria’s Inner Harbour this long weekend, welcoming vessels of all shapes and sizes.

Festival chair Bill Noon says the annual event, now in its 43rd year, has been a success so far with pent-up demand drawing in participants by the boatload.

“We had over 80 registered vessels and usually we’ll get about 50. You’ll see on the dock that there’s basically no room,” Noon told CHEK News.

One of the boats showcased during the festival is an MV Sannox vessel, which is over 100 years old and still functions well. The boat’s owner, Marc Johnston, says its longevity is what makes it unique.

“It’s special because of that. There are not many boats, wooden or otherwise, that would make it to that mark,” according to Johnston.

For sailors like Johnston, it’s the passion within the local boat community that brings festivalgoers together.

“It’s the romance in the sea and classics of all these old wooden boats that are key elements of it,” added Randy Olafson, owner of the Double Eagle vessel now on display at the harbour.

The Classic Boat Festival, hosted by The Maritime Museum of BC, started Friday and wraps up Monday evening.

Mohammed HussainMohammed Hussain

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