FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Contact: Cindy Price
Tourist No 2 Returns to Downtown Astoria
ASTORIA OR (January 5, 2018) -- The Astoria Ferry Group announced today that Astoria’s historic ferry, the Tourist No 2, will relocate to the 17th Street public dock on Saturday, January 6, 2018. The Group has secured the moorage with the City of Astoria through Feburary 10, 2018, with the possibility of a short extension. The 17th Street dock makes the vessel accessible to volunteers and visitors while preparations are made for a more permanent moorage at Pier 39.
Observers will see that the Ferry has a new coat of paint, made possible by students from the Tongue Point Job Corps Seamanship program. The new colors are black and white, the historic colors of the Tourist No 2. Under the supervision of owner Capt. Christian Lint and Seamanship instuctor Gunnar Allen, who has recently joined the Astoria Ferry Group’s Board of Directors, the students have also helped to weatherproof the upper decks and remove years of accumulated odds and ends.
Taking a large stride in restoration, the students helped to remove the false floor on the main deck, revealing the original car deck. The sturdy old-growth fir planks will be sanded and sealed, adding beauty to this working vessel.
Pier 39 is home to Coffee Girl, Rogue Ales, Astoria Scuba, and other retail and professional offices. It was built in 1875 for the oldest and largest established cannery in the Pacific Northwest, Hanthorn-Bumble Bee. The Astoria Ferry Group has reached a preliminary agreement with Pier 39’s owner, Floyd Holcom, for long-term moorage of the Tourist No 2 on the south side the cannery. Work is underway to prepare a 120-foot floating dock, accessible to all, to accommodate the vessel.
Open vessel days while at 17th Street will be announced. Interior restorations and repairs are in progress. If you see workers aboard, you’re welcome to call “Ahoy!”
The Astoria Ferry Group was formed in 2015 to promote Columbia River maritime history through the preservation, protection, and operation of the historic Tourist No 2, the last remaining vessel in Astoria’s historic ferry service. For more information, visit www.AstoriaFerry.com.
Ferry friend and Clatsop County (Astoria) District Attorney Joshua Marquis was in New York City and reading the ‘State by State’ section of the USA Today on November 16. Of course he looked at Oregon first, and this is what he saw. Over 4 million copies!
Can't make it to Fort George Tuesday night for 2018 Magnanimous Mug Award? Drop it off Monday or Tuesday at Old Town Framing, 1287 Commercial St. or donate through the website and we'll have it in time to qualify for a possible $10,000 match. Thank you kegs and barrels in advance. Every dollar will go to preservation and restoration of the Tourist No 2.
We so look forward to getting her in shape for every sort of community event -- story times and arts and educational events of all sorts for all ages, dockside events for one and all, eco and business charters, scheduled waterfront runs. With your help, it won't be long before she again becomes a treasured Astoria icon.
Maddox wants a weekly playtime on the ferry. He can hardly wait!
Read about the 2018 Magnanimous Mug Award.
Co-Presidents of the Astoria Ferry Group Cindy Price and Dulcye Taylor went to Portland on a semi-secret mission this past Friday, to attend the awards dinner where the Tourist No 2 was officially added to Restore Oregon's 2018 list of Most Endangered Places. It is an extraordinary honor and will [in the words of RO] highlight the ferry's value as a cultural and economic asset, and then help bring together rehabilitation expertise, resources, and local support to revitalize the Tourist No 2 so she can again contribute to the community and be passed forward to future generations. She received a lot of big whoops from the nearly 300 dinner guests, second only to the beloved Jantzen Beach Carousel.
Astoria ferry makes Oregon’s most endangered listThe nonprofit Astoria Ferry Group is restoring the Tourist No. 2
By Edward StrattonThe Daily Astorian
Published on November 13, 2017 7:59AM
Restore Oregon has named the ferry Tourist No. 2 one of its 12 most endangered places in 2018.
The nonprofit Astoria Ferry Group is restoring the 93-year-old vessel to be used for river excursions and other events.
Restore Oregon’s endangered list names properties in imminent danger of being lost. Inclusion on the list makes the project eligible for technical assistance and educational resources to develop strategies for long-term viability and preservation.
Built in 1924, the ferry worked the Columbia River under Capt. Fritz Elfving. The Navy commandeered the vessel in 1941 to lay mines at the mouth of the Columbia after the attack on Pearl Harbor. After the war, the Army used the ferry between Fort Stevens and Fort Canby, Washington. In 1946, Elfving bought the ferry back and used it until 1966, when the Astoria Bridge opened.
The ferry was sold and used in the Puget Sound region by Pierce County, Washington, until 1996. It was later used for summer cruises and purchased in 2010 by Christian Lint for dockside events in Bremerton, Washington. Local hotelier Robert Jacobs learned of the ferry’s existence and started negotiating with Lint for its return to Astoria.
The Astoria Ferry Group raised more than $50,000 to have Lint bring the vessel in August 2016 from Bremerton, Washington, to North Tongue Point. A year after the ferry’s arrival, the group issued an ultimatum for $100,000 and a fresh influx of volunteers, warning that the restoration effort had plateaued and could stop.
But new volunteers, including Lint and seamanship students from federal training site Tongue Point Job Corps Center, have taken over restoring the vessel at North Tongue Point.
“While it provides protection from the weather, it is a primitive facility, with dilapidated pilings, and provides power sufficient only to keep the generator battery charged,” Restore Oregon said in its explanation of threats to the vessel.
The ferry faces issues with deterioration, water damage, utilities and antiquated equipment. The Astoria Ferry Group hopes to move the vessel to the waterfront commercial complex at Pier 39 for more public exposure while volunteers continue to prepare it for the Coast Guard certification needed to carry groups on the water.
Video taken as Tourist No 2 returned to North Tongue Point moorage this afternoon, after a service run along the Astoria waterfront.
Presenting 4/5ths of the fine team of Seamanship students who worked on the ferry this week. Great work!
Exterior priming and painting in the historic white-and-black colors is almost finished. The prep work helped to reveal areas in need of repair that may have been previously missed or understated. The paint makes her more attractive for visitors when she is moved to Pier 39, and more importantly adds a layer of protection over the coming weather months until repairs can be made.