Registration opens September 1

Start saving those pennies!


Early Bird registration for the 11th Maritime Heritage Conference and the 45th Annual Conference on Sail Training and Tall Ships opens on September 1st.

Join us 15-17 February, at the New Orleans Marriott – French Quarter.

The Theme for the conference is Our Maritime Communities-Stronger Together. The Conference will offer a combination of focus sessions, plenary sessions, forums and Maritime Heritage paper presentations encompassing a broad array of topics.

Register now before prices increase by $100 at midnight November 30th.

Interested in being a sponsor? Head over to the website for more information.



2017 Sail Training Awards: Call for Nominations!

2016 Sail Training Program- Marimed/MAKANI OLU

Each year at the Annual Conference on Sail Training and Tall Ships, Tall Ships America honors a select group of sail trainers and supporters for their outstanding contributions to the world of sail training. Candidates are nominated by the membership and the final winners are selected by the Tall Ships America Board of Directors and Staff.

Award categories are (descriptions are on our website):

Lifetime Achievement
Sail Trainer of the Year
Sail Training Program of the Year
Sea Education Program of the Year
Volunteer of the Year

All members in good standing are eligible to nominate candidates for the 2017 Sail Training Awards.  (Nominees must be current members of Tall Ships America)

Email your nominations with supporting documents to Lori Aguiar, Director of Operations,

or mail to Tall Ships America
Attn: Lori Aguiar
PO Box 1459
Newport, RI 02840.

Deadline for submissions is December 31, 2017.

View past award recipients on our website

You can be a sponsor, too!


2018 Call For Speakers!


The theme for the conference is Our Maritime Communities-Stronger Together. The Conference will offer a combination of focus sessions, plenary sessions, forums and Maritime Heritage paper presentations encompassing a broad array of topics including:

♦ Media and Publications — Media & Publications
♦ Crew and Staff Training and Development
♦ Tall Ships, Sail Training and Education Under Sail
♦ Not for Profit Administration
♦ Marketing and Social Media
♦ Fund Development
♦ Vessel Operations and Safety
♦ Tall Ships® Events and Host Port
♦ Maritime and naval history
♦ Inland Water Commerce and seaport operations
♦ Maritime Art, Literature and Music
♦ Lighthouses and Lifesaving Stations
♦ Underwater Archaeology
♦ Oceanic Trade and Communications
♦ Shipbuilding
♦ Maritime Libraries, Archives, and Museums
♦ Maritime Heritage Education and Preservation
♦ Marine Science and Ocean Conservation
♦ National Maritime Sanctuaries
♦ Historic Preservation and Utilization of Structures and Vessels
♦ Marine Science and Ocean Conservation
♦ Maritime Heritage Education and Preservation
♦ The Maritime Heritage Grant Program

We invite you to share your knowledge and experience in one of these areas with Tall Ships America members and Maritime Heritage attendees.

Deadline for submission is 1 November. Visit our website for guidelines on how to submit your proposal.


We’re going to New Orleans!

Join us in New Orleans, February 15-17!

We could not be more excited to announce the 11th Maritime Heritage Conference and the 45th Annual Conference on Sail Training and Tall Ships!  Our two groups will come together for an information-packed joint conference encompassing a broad array of topics in New Orleans.  The Maritime Heritage Conference was last held in 2014, and is unique in bringing together all elements of the maritime heritage community to discuss topics of common interest. Read more about the conference here.

The conference will take place at the New Orleans Marriott- French Quarter. Rooms are available for registered attendees. Register here.

Agenda is coming soon. If you are interested in speaking at the conference, please send in your proposals! There is so much happening among our members, we would love to hear from you.

Thank you to our sponsors! (Want to be a sponsor, too? You can!)


Snow at the Seaport

Raise your hand if you sailed in Harvey Gamage
Raise your hand if you sailed in Harvey Gamage

Our conference started off on a high note with the New England Patriots winning the Super Bowl. The low came during the middle of the week when Boston was hit by a doozy of a snow storm stranding several people at airports. But, and thank goodness for technology, we were able to Skype in speakers and shuffle around a few sessions to accommodate late arrivals. As long as there is coffee, sailors are nothing if not amenable to a few fluctuations in a plan.

And so, we gathered in snowy Boston to discuss that which we love best – sailing, sail training and tall ships. Once again, we were able to offer Crew Grants funded through the Liz Strojny Memorial Fund. We had people from as far away as Hawaii (sorry for the snow, guys!) make the trek to join us. You can view the agenda here and photos are posted on our flickr page.

On the last night of the conference, Prom Night, we had our annual TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE(r) Awards and Sail Training Awards. All of the winners were nominated by their peers. During some the presentations, it was hard to keep your composure as the accolades of the recipients were read out loud. Hearing how these people and programs have changed lives is incredibly inspiring and renews our passion for sail training and tall ships. Below is a list of the winners – Congratulations to everyone! Continue reading

Bring your game face and your useless knowledge


That’s right, nerds! Pub Trivia is BACK! Are you a fount of useless information and arcane facts? This night is for you!

Join us Tuesday, February 7th 9:00pm at the Tamo Bistro and Bar in the Seaport Hotel. Brian Holmen and Erin Short will be your quizmasters.  The grand prize will be the respect of your fellow sailors and bragging rights for the rest of the conference.

We are limiting team size to six people but there is no limit to how many teams we can have. You just have to have a witty name (make it good, people) and show up.  Help us kick off the 44th Annual Conference on Sail Training and Tall Ships!

Focus Session: Program Showcase – San Salvador, Oliver Hazard Perry

Program Showcase B

Presentations (PDF)
San Salvador Goes to Sea
Oliver Hazard Perry

Showcase 1: San Salvador Goes to Sea
Presenter: Dr. Ray Ashley

This presentation will cover the background of building the galleon San Salvador, including the construction, launching, rigging, certification, and training of the crew for the seven-week Pacific Heritage Tour.

Dr. Ray Ashley
Dr. Ray Ashley

Dr. Raymond Ashley is President/CEO of the Maritime Museum of San Diego. Growing up locally, he became director of the Maritime Museum of San Diego in 1995. He holds a BA in Anthropology from UCSD, a MA in Maritime History and Museum Studies from East Carolina University, and a PhD in History from Duke University, specializing in the history of science, technology and medicine. He has taught courses in history and archeology at UCSD and USD, has published papers in American Neptune and a number of other professional journals, and writes a column for the Maritime Museum’s peer reviewed journal Mains’l Haul.

Dr. Ashley has been sailing for most of his life since spending his senior year in high school on the schooner Westward and has sailed, built, restored, renovated and preserved ships for many years before he came to the Maritime Museum and in the years since. He is a licensed captain for sail, steam and auxiliary vessels of 200 tons domestic (500 tons international) registry, is the Star of India’s  navigator and sails as relief captain for the other vessels of the Museum’s active fleet including the State tall ship Californian, steam yacht Medea, Swift Boat PCF 816, Pilot and most recently, the galleon San Salvador.

Dr. Ashley is a member of many civic and professional organizations and serves or has served on the Boards of the Council of American Maritime Museums, Sea Education Association of Woods Hole, MA, the North American Society for Oceanic History, the Nautical Research Guild editorial board, the American Sail Training Association, Cabrillo Festival, the San Diego Port Tenants Association, the World Ship Trust, and is President of the American Ship Trust. In 2007, Dr. Ashley was Conference Chair for the Eighth International Maritime Heritage Conference, hosted by the Maritime Museum of San Diego.

In 2014 Dr. Ashley was recognized with lifetime achievement awards by both the Maritime Alliance in San Diego, and the International Maritime Heritage Alliance, for the construction of the Galleon San Salvador. He lives in Chula Vista with his wife Carlynn (with whom he once sailed a 25’ boat through the South Pacific).

 Showcase 2: Oliver Hazard Perry
Presenter:   Chris Dimock, Operations Manager

After a successful first season of programs in New England, America’s brand new Tall Ship Oliver Hazard Perry, will be broadening her route down the east coast of the US and setting her sights for the open ocean, heading to Florida, Bermuda and Cuba in the spring. With our 2017 route covering an impressive 14,000 nautical miles, SSV Oliver Hazard Perry will then sail north this summer, across the Arctic Circle and into the Northwest Passage. This voyage has many dimensions. Primarily to partner with the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography and David Clark Inc. (funded by the National Science Foundation) to conduct ground breaking research on the effects of climate change in the Arctic Regions of the Northwest Passage. There is also a prominent educational aspect to this with high school, undergraduate and graduate students joining the ship as our trainees to sail the vessel into the passage and build on leadership and communication skills, while also assisting scientists with their research. There is also a public awareness aspect through David Clark’s documentary and the live daily video feeds that will be relayed through the Inner Space Center at URI to museums. This is just 5 weeks of a 4 ½ month expedition. The ship will leave Newport on June 15 and return at the end of October. We are currently in the application process for recruiting our 17 professional crew. A minimum of 11 of our 17 professional crew will hold USCG licenses. 2017 is set to be a historic year for Oliver Hazard Perry.

Captain Chris Dimock
Chris Dimock


Chris Dimock learned how to sail at the age of 7 and has never looked back since. He raced competitive, modern sailboats in Rhode Island for years without ever seeing a tall ship. One day at a college fair, he ran across a poster of the schooner Bowdoin sailing offshore, which lead him to a degree from Maine Maritime Academy, and formal training in vessel operations. He has worked on tugboats, ferries, and yachts, but has always returned to the traditional sail training world. Chris has sailed on tall ships such as the Bowdoin, Harvey Gamage, Westward, Robert Seamans, Corwith Cramer, and AJ Meerwald.