CALLING ALL FAMILIES AND FRIENDS WHO LOVE SMALL CRAFT BOATING
This coming Labor Day weekend September 2-4, Native American canoes are coming once again to Birch Bay and Blaine in a program called “Communities Pulling (paddling) Together”. On the 2nd, the Haandei I Jin Tlingit dance group is planning to dance in Birch Bay at 1:15 PM during their Discovery Days, and the G’ana’k’w Family canoe along with other canoe families will launch their canoes for Blaine at 2:30 PM, arriving in Blaine to a traditional landing protocol at approximately 5:30 PM.
Due to very low tides at the wrong time of the day at the landing/take off location, and the fact that there is now both non-commercial crabbing season and a recently announced commercial crab opener on Labor Day weekend, we are changing the location for all canoe landing and launching. Simply, there is too much fast moving boat traffic this weekend, and they could put the canoe families at risk.
Originally, we were going to land where we landed in 2015, along Marine Drive at Telescope Point in Blaine. WE WILL NOT BE THERE.
Now we are landing on Saturday between 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM at the far east end of Semiahmoo Spit. The location is just past the old water tower and the Semiahmoo Resort, and close to the beach and dock where the Plover Ferry lands.
The beach can be reached by car. Check your map/GPS, and follow the roads that go around Drayton Harbor to the Semiahmoo Spit. Follow the road along the spit and you will see the old water tank and tower. Continue on 100 yards, and you’ll see the beach.
You can also take the Plover Ferry to the beach at no charge on Saturday evening as it has been reserved for canoe families and their friends from 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM. The Plover leaves from Gate #2 at the Blaine Harbor Marina, along Marine Drive. Walk through the gate to the water, and you’ll see the Plover Ferry waiting area.
The Sunday evening paddle will also start and end at the same beach, as will all other canoeing.
For the next two days, if you have a sailing dinghy, rowboat, canoe, kayak, or even a steamboat, come join the native canoes for two days of short journeys in the protected waters of Drayton Harbor, Semiahmoo Spit, and Dakota Creek. Water craft can be launched from the beach at the east end of Semiahmoo Spit (in front of the Plover dock), the Blaine Harbor Marina and Launch, or from the beach at Marine Drive in Blaine. Kayaks are available to rent from the Semiahmoo Resort water craft rentals, and the Historic Plover Ferry will be in operation each day of the Labor day weekend.
Be sure to pack life jackets, snacks, water, and sun lotion for each day of this free weekend gathering.
Starting at 11:00 AM on the 3rd, there will be another opportunity to witness singing, dancing, and traditional celebrations in Blaine along Marine Drive. Then at 5:00 PM, all water craft are invited to explore Drayton Harbor with the native canoes, and to journey up Dakota Creek with the returning salmon as far as the rising tide will permit.
On the 4th which is Labor Day, join the canoes at noon for a short paddle in your small craft for a picnic on Semiahmoo Spit, across from the Alaska Packers’ Cannery Museum. Pack a great picnic lunch, and if you don’t have a small craft, you can drive to this community wide picnic. There is plenty of parking at the museum which is well worth a visit by your family.