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Final Day in Victoria; Interview with Hawaiian Chieftain

Posted by jovannatheintern on July 1, 2008

It’s the final day of the four day festival event at Victoria’s harbor. However, the crowds are still gathering and the excitement is as strong as ever. Even though the gates don’t open until 9:30 A.M., a line that neared the street corner had formed at the entrance gate by 8:30 this morning. Then, when the locks came off at opening time, patrons literally made a mad dash past the vendor booths straight to the waiting line of their favorite ships. It was a thrill to sit and watch this enthusiasm and excitement that the Tall Ships create.


ASTA’s education booth has been a very popular stop for festival-goers. Our station is part of a multi-booth passport program designed for children of all ages. Participants who wish to get a stamp on their festival passport must first finish a “Ship Shapes” worksheet. This requires properly identifying nine different types of ship rigs including a ketch and full rigged ship. This activity helps the participants interact with the ships on a different level as they begin to speculate about what types of ships are here now in Victoria Harbor.


The past few nights when the festival activities in the harbor are winding down, the ships take on interested members of the public who have bought tickets to be a part of a battle. Often these battles include 2 to 3 ships, which sail out of the harbor and engage in a staged war between each other. With the canons booming it is quite an experience. To get a better idea of what a battle entails I met up with the Captain Jerimiah Gempler and Master Gunner Sarah Gempler of the Hawaiian Chieftain, a square rigged topsail ketch, which has gone out to battle the past three nights.


Click here to listen! Interview with the Hawaiian Chieftain


Click here for an article on battling from the Times Colonist!


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