Plover helps students across the border

Published on Thu, Jun 9, 2011 by Jeremy Schwartz

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The crew of the schooner Adventuress helps transfer the luggage of 19 eighth-graders from the ship to the Plover ferry. Photo courtesy of Dan James.

The Plover ferry recently gave a hand to 19 eighth-graders and a handful of adult chaperones when the schooner Adventuress on which they were sailing had to make a stop near Blaine.

The Adventuress, carrying 19 students from the Portland Waldorf School in Oregon, was on its way to a sailing festival in Richmond, B.C. The students were participating in an educational program that will eventually take them on a three-day sail from Richmond to Victoria.

The students boarded the schooner in Bellingham, Adventuress communications coordinator Zach Simonson-Bond said. On the morning of Friday, June 3, the schooner stopped in Blaine so the students could disembark and cross the Canadian border on foot.

Adventuress captain Berger explained he had spoken with Richard Sturgill, one of the crewman on the Plover, and set up a time for the ferry to take the students off the Adventuress and sail them to Blaine Marina, from where they were able to cross on foot into Canada at the Peace Arch crossing. A Richmond city bus then picked them up and drove them the rest of the way.

Berger said the transfer of students had been planned for weeks with Canadian customs and the Coast Guard. He explained the Adventuress was originally slated to dock at Semiahmoo on June 3 but was not able to due to another boat being in the spot set aside for the schooner.

The Adventuress, based in Port Townsend, was launched in 1913 and now carries 3,500 passengers annually on educational expeditions. The schooner’s mainsail weighs 3,000 pounds and is the second largest mainsail of any tall ship based in Puget Sound waters, Simonson-Bond said.


  Left: The schooner Adventuress docked off of Drayton Harbor as the Plover ferried 19 eighth-graders from the ship to Blaine Marina. Photo courtesy of Richard Sturgill.

  Editor's Note: This story has been recently edited to reflect the true extent of planning involved in the transfer of the students across the border.