Tall Ships Draw Big Crowds in Boston Harbor 2017 Debut

More than 50 majestic sailing vessels from around the globe paraded through Boston's inner harbor under sail for the first time in 17 years on Saturday.

The colorful procession of tall ships was dubbed Sail Boston. Up to 2 million people were expected to clamber aboard the ships, which will remain moored along the city's waterfront through Wednesday.

The Parade of Sail was originally scheduled to start at 9 a.m., but was delayed until 10 a.m. due to heavy fog.

Scenes From Sail Boston 2017

"We have been working diligently with the City, State, Massport, the U.S. Coast Guard and other key public and private agencies to ensure a successful event and a memorable experience for all," said Dusty Rhodes, president of Conventures and executive director of Sail Boston 2017. "We are looking forward with great enthusiasm to the return of the Tall Ships and to embrace and celebrate the cultures of the countries each represents."

Security was tight for the event, with authorities treating it like a Super Bowl or a presidential inauguration.

Boston has hosted a number of tall ships in recent years, but hasn't seen a Grand Parade of Sail since 2000.

Karen Schmidt of Malden, Mass. said that "I was here 17 years ago with my parents. ... I thought it would be a great trip [today] with my boys."

With the U.S. Coast Guard's Eagle leading the way, 56 ships from 13 nations took part in the parade past the historic fort guarding Boston Harbor.

Among the vessels included in the parade were the Union from Peru, Europa from The Netherlands, Alexander Von Humboldt II from Germany, Spain's El Galeon, Nadezhda from Russia, Guayas from Ecuador, United Kingdom’s Blue Clipper, Canada's Bluenose II, and Chile’s Esmeralda.

Spectators viewed the event from many locations, including Castle Island, the Seaport District, the downtown waterfront, the North End, Charlestown and East Boston.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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