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Bremerton, Port Orchard join forces for Harbor Festival
With gas prices creeping up and the economy still lagging, this might be a good Memorial Day weekend to stick close to home. Or, if the organizers of the Kitsap Harbor Festival have their way, the water.
“Let us be your stay-cation,” said Brian Sauer, who manages the Port Orchard Marina, which is hosting events all weekend with its counterpart across the water, the Bremerton Marina.
Sauer said the idea for the festival sprang from the success of the Bremerton Marina’s grand opening last year.
“We thought it would be great to make it a community event and include both sides of the water,” Sauer said. “We support both our Port Orchard and Bremerton communities.”
In the spirit of cooperation, Sauer said both cities and the Port of Bremerton joined forces to have the foot ferry between Port Orchard and Bremerton running not only later into the evening than normal, but on both Sunday and Monday, when it normally would not be.
Passengers will be charged the normal fare, which is now $2.
The events begin today when the tall ships arrive, some in both marinas, and will be on display beginning at 12 p.m. At 7 p.m., the Historic Orchard Theater on Bay Street will play “The Hunt for Red October,” while also at 7 p.m. the Admiral Theatre on Pacific Avenue will play “From Russia With Love.”
Saturday, May 23 kicks off with a pancake breakfast (8 - 10 a.m.) on the Bremerton Boardwalk hosted by the Bremerton Central Lions Club. At 9 a.m., the Port Orchard Farmers Market begins as usual, along with the “Big Show for Small Boats.”
From 10 a.m. until 7 p.m., all manner of boats, from “Vintage Classics to Classy Yachts,” will be on display at the Port Orchard Marina, along with the tall ships, vendor booths and entertainment along the Bremerton Boardwalk, and vintage military vehicles will be on display in Bremerton as well.
Also beginning at 10 a.m. is the “Kitsap Cup,” which features a sailboat race in Bremerton and a Laser Race in Port Orchard, the Kitsap Car Cruz on Pacific Avenue, the Fourth Street Market and the “Boats Afloat” in Bremerton.
Beginning at noon, free shuttles will begin heading to the Clearwater Casino in Suquamish, and from 2 p.m. until 3:30 p.m. at the Bremerton breakwater, port officials will hold a dedication ceremony for its “Lone Sailor” statue.
From 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., the Navy Band “Passage” will play on the Bremerton Boardwalk and from 8 p.m. until 11 p.m., the Kitsap Harbor Party will be held at the Kitsap Conference Center, featuring “heavy hors d’oeuvres” and music by the Jimmy-Buffett-inspired band “Garratt Wilkin and the Parrotheads.”
Tickets for the party are $40 a person and can be ordered by phone at (360) 475-7120.
Many of the events on Saturday will continue Sunday, including the PO Farmers Market, the tall ships, the “Vintage Classics to Classy Yachts” in Port Orchard, the Boats Afloat in Bremerton and the Kitsap Cup continues with the “Power Boat Poker Run.”
On Monday, the Navy League will hold a memorial service on the USS Turner Joy along the Bremerton waterfront at 10 a.m., the “Vintage Classics to Classy Yachts” will be on display in Port Orchard from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. and vendor booths and entertainment will be on the Bremerton boardwalk from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.
For a full schedule of events and more information, visit www.kitsapharborfestval.com.