Participating Tall Ships

The Ocean Institute, Southern California’s premier marine educational facility, will stage its annual Tall Ships parade at sunset on September 6th, 2013. Seven tall ships from ports up and down the west coast will assemble off the shores of South Laguna, and under full sail make way for Dana Point’s beautiful harbor, firing their cannons along the way. Those who have seen these magnificent ships in previous years know the surreal wonderment that this sight offers. For those who will witness this spectacular event for the first time, it will be an experience never to be forgotten!

Listed below are the participating ships for the 2013 Toshiba Tall Ships Festival. Please note, these vessels were confirmed at the time of posting, however, the world of Tall Ships is ruled by circumstances beyond our control, such as the winds, the tides and the whim of a Captain. As such, there remains the chance that the line-up could change, with some of the listed vessels dropping out…and additional vessels arriving.
Note: tallship photos ©Cliff Wassmann For more tall ship photos >>>

Brig Pilgrim

The Brig Pilgrim

The Pilgrim is a full size replica of the hide brig immortalized by Richard Henry Dana, Jr. in his American classic seafaring novel Two Years Before the Mast. She is a 130-foot "snow brig" hosting fourteen sails, including eight square sails, giving her that distinctively majestic appearance. At sea, the Pilgrim’s volunteer crew mans up to 144 lines in perfect synchronicity to sail her as in bygone times.

Coming to Dana Point in 1981, this community icon has served the Ocean Institute well. Having proven to be a most powerful educational tool, thousands of children step aboard the Pilgrim’s decks each school year to participate in one of her many award-winning living history programs. In the summer, the Pilgrim continues to celebrate her heritage as she heads to sea, with a crew of dedicated volunteers, to embark on her annual goodwill and sail training voyage.


The Spirit of Dana Point

The Ocean Institute’s second tall ship, the regal schooner, Spirit of Dana Point, allows students, educators and the general public the opportunity to cast off the dock for exciting sailing adventures that last anywhere from a few hours… to five days!

The Spirit of Dana Point is a traditionally built replica of a 1770s privateer employed during the American Revolution. She is classified as a 118-foot' topsail schooner, with a sparred length of 118 feet and 5,000 square feet of sail.

She now serves as an at-sea learning platform for school children of all ages with an emphasis in maritime living history and marine science. In keeping with the tradition of the Ocean Institute’s maritime programs, students are challenged to develop their problem solving and communication skills, as well as their ability to work as a team while developing a sense of leadership and self-esteem.


Irving Johnson and Exy Johnson

Launched in April 2003, the Irving and Exy Johnson are twin brigantines. The Exy Johnson is named in honor of Irving Johnson’s wife who traveled with him on his many adventures. The Exy Johnson can be identified by her red stripe along the hull. She was built side by side with the Irving Johnson using both traditional and modern methods in her construction. Both vessels serve the Los Angeles Maritime Institute in providing sail training opportunities for volunteers and students in the "TopSail" Youth Program.

For further information, contact Captain Jim Gladson at the Los Angeles Maritime Institute, San Pedro, CA (310) 833-6055. Website:


American Pride

This graceful 130' three-masted schooner, American Pride, was built in 1941, originally as a two-masted "schooner-dragger" and launched as the Virginia. She spent over 40 years commercially fishing the Grand Banks and George’s Banks. From 1968 to 1986 she was known as the Lady Blue and in 1986, she was completely re-built in Thomaston, Maine which included the addition of a third mast. The Lady Blue then became the Natalie Todd and operated as a charter boat out of Bar Harbor, Maine. In October of 1996, she was purchased by the American Heritage Marine Institute . Today, the majestic American Pride devotes her service to a variety of maritime history and marine science education programs as well as unique charter experiences. For more information, contact the American Heritage Marine Institute at (714) 970–8800 or look them up at



This regal schooner, is owned and operated by the San Diego Maritime Museum. The Californian is a recreation of the 1849 Campbell-class Revenue Marine Cutter C.W. Lawrence. She is a 145' two-masted square topsail schooner. The Californian offers educational sailing programs for youth and sail training opportunities for volunteers.

The ship has been designated as the official tallship ambassador for the state of California and has a broad history having sailed to ports in Hawaii, Canada, and Mexico.

For more information, call the San Diego Maritime Museum at (619) 234-9153.


The Curlew

Designed by the legendary John G. Alden, Curlew was built in 1926 at Fred F. Pendleton's shipyard in Wiscasset, Maine. In the 40's, Curlew was donated to the Merchant Marine Academy where she served as a sail-training vessel and saw coastal submarine patrol duty for the Coast Guard during WWII.

A pioneer in the Caribbean charter trade, Curlew gained fame in 1962 by surviving a hurricane-like storm that claimed 144 lives. She later cruised extensively in the Central and South Pacific. In 1976, she was meticulously restored in New Zealand and then sailed to Hawaii where she was engaged in inter-island charters.

Curlew is a classic wooden boat. Her strong and graceful hull is sheathed in long leaf yellow pine over sturdy frames of white oak. Fully inspected and certified by the Coast Guard, Curlew is now permanently berthed in Dana Point Harbor at the Dana Wharf Sportfishing docks.


Bill of Rights

This classic gaff topsail schooner was built in South Bristol, Maine by the Harvey Gamage Shipyard, a famous old-school New England yard. Built in 1971, the Bill of Rights sailed from Norfolk, Virginia, to join the Los Angeles Maritime Institute “TopSail” Youth Programs in March of 1998. Now, after having undergone considerable restoration, The Bill of Rights at 136’ long is currently located in Channel Islands Harbor and is operated by Steven Taylor.

For more information, visit the American Tall Ship Institute web site at or call (805) 320-7447