Restoring a great San Diego treasure!

The historic ship Star of India is one of San Diego’s great treasures. Its figurehead, depicting the Greek Muse of music and lyric poetry Euterpe, is undergoing restoration at the Maritime Museum of San Diego. Euterpe was the original name of Star of India when it was launched in 1863 at the Isle of Man.

Should you venture down into the hold of Star of India, you’ll see how the carved wooden figurehead has had many layers of paint removed, in order to remove rot and fill in cracks. The last time the figurehead was removed from the tall ship’s bow was back in 1988.

The figurehead was carved from a single piece of pine wood by a worker at a Glasgow boatyard named George Sutherland. By sheer coincidence, that is the exact name of the Maritime Museum crew member leading today’s restoration effort!

If you’re interested in seeing history close up, this is your chance! Head down to the Maritime Museum of San Diego, step aboard Star of India, the world’s oldest active sailing ship, and descend from the main deck down two levels into the hold, where you can view the renewal of beautiful Euterpe!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Smiling new volunteer at Maritime Museum!

Today was Samantha’s first day volunteering at the Maritime Museum of San Diego. From one who is a big fan of the museum–thank you!

I walked slowly around the museum’s historic ships in the early afternoon, watching Sunday volunteers at work, and learned a few new things. There’s always something different and interesting to discover here!

As you can see, along with Samantha, many were working to maintain the Star of India.

Applying a clear UV-resistant acrylic to the main deck of Star of India.
Volunteering, and being members of a sail crew, seems to produce smiles!
Out on the museum’s barge, I saw the Robert Sharp is now pink! Don’t worry, I was told, that’s just a primer coat.
Hammering away on the Star of India’s forward capstan.
A group was setting out on a Sunday sailing adventure aboard tall ship Californian.
I haven’t yet enjoyed a Californian sailing adventure, but I promise to, one day. Looks incredible!
There she goes!

Stay tuned for more photos from Chula Vista, Allied Gardens, La Jolla . . . and who knows where else!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

San Diego’s elegant Maritime Museum Dancers!

The Maritime Museum Dancers performed today. They graced the dance floor of the Maritime Museum of San Diego’s historic steam ferry Berkeley!

In addition to elegant, spritely dancing, the performers sang both together and individually, and one even read poetry!

These particular costumes and entertainments would have been enjoyed over two hundred years ago in England, in the early 19th century, around the time of the Regency Period.

The Maritime Museum Dancers often perform on another museum ship, HMS Surprise, the replica British Royal Navy ship used in the filming of Master and Commander.

Lucky museum visitors were enraptured by today’s performance, which included line dancing, a quadrille, and a duet. Near the conclusion of their performance, the group sang a gently stirring rendition of Greensleeves.

Alas my love you do me wrong
To cast me off discourteously;
And I have loved you oh so long
Delighting in your company…

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Another stunning sunset behind tall ships!

Another stunning sunset in San Diego this evening.

I was walking downtown, along the Embarcadero, when the sun descended into storm clouds beyond Point Loma. The clouds had turned golden near the horizon.

I took these photographs with several tall ships of the Maritime Museum of San Diego in the foreground.

I never tire of cool sights like this!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Californian’s cannon salute to Star of India.

If you’ve ever heard two very loud booms in downtown San Diego on a Sunday afternoon, chances are you’ve heard cannons on San Diego Bay.

Around 3:30 pm, when the tall ship Californian returns from a four-hour sail and approaches its Maritime Museum of San Diego home, it fires two cannons to salute world-famous museum ship Star of India.

I was out on the deck of the Maritime Museum’s steam ferry Berkeley when a docent advised everyone there would soon be a very loud noise! I got my camera ready, aimed it at Californian, and snapped photos at the first sign of smoke.

Startling booms followed shortly thereafter, echoing off nearby downtown skyscrapers!

The two cannon salute to Star of India, oldest active sailing ship in the world, is now a San Diego tradition. The booms have been echoing downtown for as long as I can remember.

The handsome schooner Californian, built in San Diego in 1984, is the official tall ship of the State of California.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Sails, ships and beauty on San Diego Bay!

It was a perfect January day on San Diego Bay. Not a cloud in the blue sky, very little haze, a comfy 70 degrees. No jacket required!

As a member of the Maritime Museum of San Diego, I have a couple of free tickets for harbor tours aboard the museum’s historic Pilot boat. I used one of those tickets this afternoon!

These photographs on the water show a little of why so many people love San Diego.

I’ve provided details about the historic Pilot boat and this harbor tour in the past. See that old blog post here.

I’ve also blogged about many of the unique sights one can see on San Diego Bay. You can check out a couple of those fascinating posts here and here.

Today I wanted to relax, not take notes.

Simply take in the beauty.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Sparks, scrapes and chisels at the Maritime Museum!

Lots of fascinating activity today at the Maritime Museum of San Diego!

As I walked about, I noticed volunteers and sail crew members were working on several very different vessels in the museum’s world-famous collection.

Sparks were flying from the black sail of the B-39 Soviet-era Russian submarine. Its life, sadly, has come to an end. Preparations are underway to tow the badly rusted Foxtrot-class diesel electric submarine to Mexico where it will be scrapped.

After watching guys using a torch on the sub’s outer hull, I walked to the far end of the Maritime Museum’s barge where the Robert Sharp’s stern was being restored. A friendly worker with a heat gun was crackling old varnish, which was then scraped off.

When I stepped onto the deck of the historic steam yacht Medea, I noticed a woodworker carefully repairing the boat’s wooden rail where it had split.

The elegant Medea has a fascinating history.

Did you know that, in addition to Medea being a pleasure yacht that cruised the isles and lochs of Scotland, it was used by France during World War I, and by the British Royal Navy and Norwegian Navy during World War II?

Learn much more here!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Mystic Whaler tall ship visits San Diego.

The Mystic Whaler is visiting San Diego. I saw it docked at the Maritime Museum of San Diego this afternoon.

With a name like Mystic Whaler, you might think this tall ship is circling the globe searching for the elusive Moby Dick.

Wrong!

The beautiful ship is from Connecticut, and after a passage through the Panama Canal, it’s making its way up the West Coast. Mystic Whaler’s ultimate destination is the Channel Islands, where it will serve as an educational ship for the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum. A bunch of school kids are in for a real adventure!

The 83-foot-long Mystic Whaler is a reproduction of a late 19th-century coastal cargo schooner. You can read a great article concerning its history and future here.

The crewmember I spoke to was super nice. Good luck!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Learn to sail a world-famous tall ship!

Volunteers work on the Star of India, world-famous tall ship of the Maritime Museum of San Diego.

Do you live in San Diego? Do you love adventure, the outdoors, and exciting new challenges? If so, then listen up!

You now have the rare opportunity to learn to sail one of the world’s most famous tall ships, the Star of India! Not to mention other amazing sailing ships belonging to the Maritime Museum of San Diego, such as the replica Spanish galleon San Salvador, and the official tall ship of the State of California: Californian!

The classes are free but require an annual museum membership, which for most individuals is a mere fifty dollars. If I didn’t work full time, I’d seriously consider signing up!

I saw the following sign on the Embarcadero today. As it says, many people dream of this opportunity. The orientation is coming up this Wednesday, January 5, so quickly inform anyone you know who might be interested!

You can also learn more by visiting this page on the Maritime Museum of San Diego’s website!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Christmas beauty in one magical place.

One of our city’s most magical indoor spaces can be found floating above San Diego Bay. Those who’ve stepped onto the passenger deck of the historic ferryboat Berkeley know what I’m talking about.

People once crossed San Francisco Bay in style. That’s where this old steam ferry originated. Now the Berkeley makes its home at the Maritime Museum of San Diego, and those who visit its elegant interior are in for a treat. Especially during the holiday season.

I hadn’t planned on blogging today, but during a short walk between winter showers my feet carried me to the museum. The Christmas decorations inside the Berkeley simply had to be photographed.

Starting tomorrow, we’ll have to wait another year for Christmas, so what better time to post these photos?

Happy Holidays!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!