Chamber music, shipwreck tales on cruise

Posted: Thursday, May 23, 2002

The third annual Lighthouse Cruise sponsored by the Gastineau Channel Historical Society will take to the water Saturday, June 1. The cruise includes live music, lunch, lectures and special programs on the shipwrecks and history of Juneau-area waters.

"We're going to visit three lighthouses - Sentinel Island, Point Retreat and Eldred Rock," organizer Renee Hughes said. "One of the exciting new features of the cruise is we have Pam Randall from Haines coming down. She's developed a melodrama on the mystery of the Clara Nevada, that struck Eldred around the turn of the century with all aboard perishing."

Hughes said Steve Burwell of Anchorage will bring underwater videos of dives on the Clara Nevada. "He's the state expert on shipwrecks and he'll be talking about the shipwrecks that happened along the way," Hughes said.

Historian Gary Gillette of Juneau also will talk about the lighthouses' history.

A chamber group including violinist Steve Tada and flutist Sally Schlicting will provide music. A documentary produced by PBS called "Legendary Lighthouses of Alaska" will be shown.

The trip includes a stop at Vanderbilt Reef north of Juneau for a memorial to the Princess Sophia, which sank there in 1918. More than 300 people died - the greatest loss of life at sea in Alaska history.

"Miss Scarlett's (florist shop) and Princess Tours donated 100 roses and we throw them overboard," Hughes said. "Last year the musicians had prepared a special piece of music, as well."

The cruise is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. aboard Four Season Marine's vessel Baranof Winds. It leaves from the Four Seasons Marine dock at Auke Bay, near the ferry terminal.

The cost is $125. For more information or to sign up, call Hughes at 586-5338.

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