After a pandemic hiatus, the Tall Ship festival is back in Brockville this weekend. The organizers think this could be the busiest festival yet.
Onlookers have already been on-site looking at ships heralding past eras.
“We’ve got my daughter and son-in-law visiting from Vietnam actually,” said Brockville resident Elizabeth Coleman, as the family took in the masts.
For another couple, the tall ships are part of a second honeymoon.
“For us being from Pakistan, that’s very, very new because we don’t get into old ships. We don’t have that kind of culture there. It’s really fascinating to learn about history,” said Nabeel Ehmed.
Organizers say based on pre-sales this could be the most well-attended tall ship festival yet.
“We have sold more than five thousand deck tour passports already. And that’s over twice as many than we sold when we had the Bluenose here three years ago,” said Tall Ships Chairperson Brian Burns.
One of the new ships at the festival is the Mimi Jane. Owner Murielle Ovenden says they spent 17 years off and on building the ship that hails from her hometown in France.
“I’m originally from Brittany and those vessels would be used for mostly tuna fishing,” said Ovenden.
The NAO Trinidad, a Spanish ship, made its voyage from Italy. In the 15th century, it was the type of ship used for carrying cargo and exploring.
“The NAO Santa Maria was the flag ship in Colombus’ expedition and in the Magellan expedition,” said Angel Rosa of the NAO Trinidad.
New to the festival this year is live music featuring Sean McCann, formerly of Canadian band Great Big Sea.
The tall ship festival runs through the weekend and wraps up at 5 pm on Sunday.