Opening Day of Boating Season is this weekend, May 6-8! Music to our ears! As a local and family owned boat dealer serving the Puget Sound for 30 years, Lake Union Sea Ray is proud to be part of this momentous celebration. We hope the boating community has a wonderful Opening Day weekend and enjoys the awesome culture and history of this significant event.

Since 1920, Seattle Yacht Club has led the way with an annual “official” Opening Day boat parade through Montlake Cut, the narrow canal that connects Portage Bay and Lake Washington.

This year’s parade starts at noon Saturday, with more than 200 boats registered, from modern superyachts to the saltiest Northwest classics. Starting the day’s events will be a procession at 10 a.m., before crew races, of Muckleshoot Tribe canoes.

The parade theme is “Salish Sea Treasures,” with many boats to be decorated accordingly, reflecting the marine life of the Washington and British Columbia waters officially designated in 2009 as the Salish Sea.

Fire boats will spray water, and boats carrying the University of Washington band and Washington State University’s alumni band will set the musical tempo for the day.

It’s a free event for spectators, with rowing teams competing in Windermere Cup crew races from east to west in the Cut preceding the boat parade. This year’s Windermere Cup, the 25th year of the event, pits University of Washington rowers against England’s Cambridge University, along with Stanford University and the University of Oklahoma. Local rowing clubs and other Northwest schools also compete in races that start at 10:20 a.m., with the last race at 11:45 a.m. Click for more details.

Windermere Cup organizers and volunteers for the Seattle Yacht Club plan to have log booms for moorage in place on the east end of Montlake Cut by noon Thursday. Spots on the log boom were reservable in advance with a donation (the reservation deadline has passed). Space remaining on the east end of the log boom will be open free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis.

To be part of the parade, book passage on the historic steamship Virginia V, departing from South Lake Union at 11:30 a.m. Saturday; $75 with buffet lunch, live band and a cash bar. Click for more details.

Article by The Seattle Times Staff