It’s a partnership that’s never been done before. The Pride of Baltimore II, a tall ship ambassador for Chesapeake Bay history that travels far and wide, will now fly the Eastport Yacht Club’s (EYC) burgee. And the two organizations are planning future education programs together.
The Annapolis club has just become the first “home yacht club” of Pride II. On Friday, EYC hosted the privateer for Maryland Day festivities and a legislative reception at the club (complete with cannon salutes). The two swapped an EYC burgee (which measures at least 5′ by 8′, but looks relatively small up the ship’s mast) for a Pride II pennant, which now hangs in a place of honor over the club’s bar.
EYC Commodore Mark Jones tells Bay Bulletin that during planning for the legislative reception, he’d asked Pride of Baltimore Chair President and CEO Jayson Williams whether the ship had a home yacht club. “Well, no,” he’d responded. “We hadn’t really thought about it.”
That led to a two-hour conversation in which the two realized a partnership held a lot of potential. The yacht club, which prides itself on being built by watermen and maritime workers rather than aristocrats, advocates for marine trades jobs and educational experiences for kids in Annapolis. Pride of Baltimore Inc. does the same thing in Charm City.
In a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), the two groups laid out goals that are aspirational rather than contractual. The goals include partnering in education, STEM, and maritime careers. Pride of Baltimore has committed to sponsor one of EYC Foundation’s maritime scholarships. For its part, the yacht club will support Pride’s Spring Sailabration on April 28, donating yacht club experiences for the Commissioning Week Blue Angels air show and 4th of July fireworks.
The Pride II will compete in the EYC-hosted Annapolis to Bermuda race June 3 before heading out on their Great Lakes tour. See the ship’s 2022 schedule here. As an honorary EYC member, Pride II Captain Jan Miles can take advantage of reciprocity with various yacht clubs outside a 50-mile radius when the ship comes into other ports.
-Meg Walburn Viviano