Lake Union Boats Afloat Show

Seattle’s 35th annual Lake Union Boats Afloat Show gets underway on Wednesday, September 11 and continues through Sunday, September 15. This exciting show brings you all the best of boating in one place on beautiful South Lake Union in sunny September. There will be dozens of different yacht brands, nearly 200 new and used boats in every size and price, as well as boating equipment of all kinds.

This year’s show also features free sailboat rides for kids and adults, a special learn-to-sail multi-day ticket and many sailboats making their West Coast debut.

The old adage about red sky at night should have included the Lake Union Boats Afloat Show as a sailor’s delight. Whether you’re a landlubber wanting to learn the ropes about sailing or an old salt looking for your next sailboat, the September Lake Union Boats Afloat Show has it all. The 2013 September show offers free sailboat rides for kids and adults, a learn-to-sail package including seminars and on water instruction and dozens of sailboat brands on display – from Blue Jacket to Island Packet to Jeanneau –many making their West Coast debut at the show. The show gets underway on Wednesday September 11th and continues through Sunday 15th, 2013.

Sailing Lessons with Seattle Sailing Club

Don’t know leeward from windward or a jibe from a tack? Or do you have friends you’ve taken sailing that have been bitten by the bug and want to learn to sail? Then the Lake Union Boats Afloat Show is the place to be. As a part of the show, Seattle Sailing Club will be offering an Introduction to Sailing package. Participants will first take a 1.5 hour on-land seminar, followed by a 1.5 hour on-water lesson. Lessons take place on Seattle Sailing Club keelboats. This is professional quality instruction in a fun, accessible package.

Seattle Sailing Club’s instructors will be exposing participants to the basics of:

·         Wind direction, points of sail, and sail trim

·         Terminology and parts of the boat and sails

·         Safety on the boat and on the water

·         Rules of the road

·         Various crew positions and maneuvers

·         Driving the a sailboat under sail power

·         The essential sailing knots

The cost is $50 includes 2 days admission to the show. Pre-registration is required. For more information and to download the syllabus visit:

Free 90-minute Sailing Lessons for Kids

Sail Sand Point will be conducting free 90-minute sailing lessons on Saturday and Sunday during the show on 13’ Hobie Cat Waves for ages 8-16.  Showgoers can drop their kids off and go cruise the docks at their leisure while the kids are being introduced to the thrill of small boat sailing. To view the schedule and sign up for the lessons in advance, email

Free Sailing Rides for all Ages Every Day at the Show

The national Discover Sailing program will be offering free sail boat rides at the show. Rides are approximately 45 minutes, on 20-40 foot sailboats, and run continuously, every day throughout the show. Check in at the Discover Sailing booth in front of Chandler’s Crabhouse restaurant. Lifejackets provided.

Sail Boats of Note

·         Blue Jacket 40: This is an all-new yacht line from the builders of Island Packet and a West Coast debut.  It is the first in several performance cruising boats with all new modern hull form, open interior layout, and big twin wheel cockpit in an easy to handle cutter-like sail plan with self tacking Hoyt carbon jib-boom.  Dealer/broker: Marine Servicecenter.

·         Catalina 385 –The Catalina 385 is third in a series of new boats that began in 2009 with the award-winning 445 model. The 385’s unique features include a watertight StrikeZone™ collision bulkhead aft of the anchor locker and Catalina’s unique SecureSocket™ chain plates mast support system which affords superior load resolution.  Dealer: Seattle Yachts.

·         Frasier 51 Cutter, built in 1994 and beautifully fitted out for the original owners by DeKleer Brothers in Canada, Glory Days has enjoyed continuous upgrading and an extensive functional and cosmetic refit over the last two years by her current owners, and is designed and equipped for safe, comfortable world cruising. Broker: Northwest Yachtnet.

·         Hunter 40: New from Marlow-Hunter and a West Coast debut. The Hunter 40 has several unique features implemented under the new ownership of David Marlow, legendary Marlow Yachts builder. With an emphasize on comfort both below and above decks, this boat features a twin cabin center queen aft layout, a huge galley and open salon with lots of natural light.  Dealer: Marine Servicecenter

·         Island Packet 360: The newest in the pedigree from “Americas Cruising Leader” and a West Coast debut, is the Island Packet 360. Featuring the patented Full-Foil Keel and Hoyt furling self tacking headsail, this 36’ model is not only stout and stable but she boasts good sailing performance in a compact package perfect for cruising couples and guests. Dealer: Marine Servicecenter

·         Isolabella, a 2006 Waterline 50’, offered by Chuck Hovey Yachts. Designed by Ed Rutherford, the Isolabella is the ultimate contemporary custom built world cruising yacht, built in British Columbia of steel with every conceivable option. Full wrap around visibility from the nav station, galley and upper settee facilitates all weather comfort while under way.

·         Jeanneau 469: All-new from Jeanneau, and a Pacific Northwest debut, the 469 features a massive twin wheel cockpit with modern e95 graphic plotters at each helm and hydraulic swim step with remote. Dealer: Marine Servicecenter

·         Tayana 48 Deck Saloon, a high quality classic blue water cruising yacht. The Tayana 48 DS is a variation on the company’s popular 48-footer. Designer Rob Ladd added a deck saloon and raised the floor structure on Bob Perry’s original hull to create a spacious, open interior. Raising the saloon floor not only improved visibility from the cabin, but also opened more space for tankage, always welcome on a cruiser.  Dealer: Seattle Yachts.

All you need to know

What: South Lake Union Boats Afloat Show

When: Wednesday September 11th – Sunday September 15th, 2013

Hours: Wednesday, VIP Opening Day Experience, 11am – 8pm (festivities 4-8pm)

Thursday and Friday 11am – 7pm

Saturday and Sunday 10am – 6pm

Where: South Lake Union in Seattle

Tickets: $12 for adults / $5 for kids 12-17 (kids under 11 are free).

$18 for a multi-day pass.

Weekdays (except Wednesday) 5-7 pm: $6

New: VIP Opening Day ticket: $18 includes wine/beer tasting, commemorative glass and entertainment

New:  $50 Intro-to-Sailing ticket includes 2-day admission, 1.5 hour seminar and 1.5 hour on-water sailing lesson.

e-Tickets can be purchased at


There: Parking lots are limited near the show. For convenience park downtown and take the Seattle Street Car directly the show on South Lake Union.

Saturday and Sunday: Park at the lot at the corner of E Blaine and Fairview Ave E and catch the free shuttle to the show. Park all day for $3.

This entry was posted in Cool Things to Do and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.