Tag Archives: 4Culture

July Chantey Sing

Broadside & The Handsome Cabin BoysBroadside and Handsome Cabin Boys

The all-woman maritime band Broadside and their counterparts the Handsome Cabin Boys lead the July sing-a-long aboard the historic tugboat Arthur Foss at Lake Union Park.

Sea Chanteys and other sea songs celebrate our connections to the sea, ships, skippers, and sailors.  Sea Chanteys are fun and easy to sing and are for all ages.

March Chantey Sing

Dano QuinnCaptain Dano Quinn will lead the March Chantey Sing at the Center for Wooden Boats. Being close to St. Patrick’s Day, there will surely be a few maritime Irish songs.

Sea Chanteys and other maritime music celebrate our connections to the sea, boats, and those who sail them. They include work songs and foc’sle ditties with great choruses that tie our present day maritime traditions and lore to those of the past. The call-and-response form makes these songs easy to learn and fun to sing for adults and children alike. Come and lead a song of the sea or just join in on the chorus.

Greet The Season

The partners of Lake Union Park’s annual Greet the Season features live music, ship tours, crafts, and many other fun activities for all ages. The event opens at 10 a.m. and continues all day, ending with the send-off of the Christmas Ships at 7 p.m.

The historic ships Virginia V, Arthur Foss, Swiftsure, and Lotus will be open to the public.  Here is a schedule of events aboard the Virginia V:

10 am–7 pm  Open ship (free hot drinks, snacks, and ship tours)
10 am–6 pm  Maritime Folknet presents live music (complete music schedule here)
10 am–5 pm  Discovery Modelers Education Center presents signal flag making

A complete schedule of the day’s activities is available at www.atlakeunionpark.org/GreetTheSeason

Yule Tide Holiday Concert

Ring in the holiday season with the annual Wheel100x100Yule Tide Concert!

Enjoy an evening of seasonal and maritime music and singing! The Whateverly Brothers (Dan Roberts & Chris Glanister) host with a full line-up of performers:


Shipwright Brian Johnson driving a new beam section under the wheelhouse.

Shipwright Brian Johnson driving a new beam section under the wheelhouse.

Keeping any wooden boat watertight against the rain is an essential and ongoing task. This is particularly true for the historic tugboat Arthur Foss. “Who’ll Stop the Rain?” is a multi-year Northwest Seaport preservation project of the vessel’s decks funded by 4Culture, the cultural services agency for King County.

Brian Johnson working on tug deck June 2013

Laying up a batten to fair up the curve along the edge of the boatdeck.

Even when Arthur Foss was new, it took maintenance by the whole crew to keep the decks and deckhouse watertight. At 124 years old, rot damage from rainwater leaks has made it necessary to replace planks and timbers. Seattle’s wet climate is harsh on the Douglas fir decks and house. While the cold freshwater of Lake Union is beneficial for the boat’s lower hull, rainwater and air on the upperworks feeds rot fungi. It is very important to stop rainwater leaks before rot spreads. Rot damage to important structural timbers and high-traffic areas requires extensive repair. This was the case with the starboard edge of the boat deck.


Brian Johnson Jeanette Hayman and Saxon Bisbee working on tug

Brian Johnson, volunteer nautical archaeologist Jeanette Hayman and nautical archaeologist-in-residence participant Saxon Bisbee tacking down the last piece of canvas on the boat deck.

Beginning in late May 2013, two nautical archaeologists and a professional shipwright began removing the badly deteriorated wood from the edge of the boat deck on Arthur Foss. This involved removing the rails, coverboards, canvas, plywood, and tar paper layers for access to the actual deck planks. Several planks along the edge had to be replaced. Then the new planks are fitted and fastened. New plywood and canvas are then put on and the railing re-fitted. This repaired area will last at least another 100 years if properly maintained.

All work performed on the Arthur Foss has direct public benefit to all visitors at Lake Union Park. The tug occupies a prominent position on the Historic Ships Wharf, with her bow facing towards a row of shaded benches often occupied by visitors. During restoration, staff, volunteers, shipwrights and nautical archaeologists engage the public and address their questions. Often, a visitor will find themselves with a tool in their hand to help in the restoration project.

New boat deck cover boards are down June 24, 2013

New boat deck cover boards are down June 24, 2013

If you are interested in contributing to the restoration, or for more information, please use contact form to express your interest.


A Shout-Out from Blog4Culture

Blog4Culture featured Northwest Seaport’s own Diesel Engine Theory Workshop in an October entry.  4Culture awarded us substantial funding through the workshop through the Heritage Special Projects program, which helped us rebuild our own tugboat Arthur Foss‘s 1934 Washington Iron Works diesel engine.

Read the full article here: Rebuilding a Historic Tugboat Engine.  Also check out the header images on their blog: that’s Arthur‘s stack representing Preservation!