March 11, 2023 | 6 PM | Port Townsend, Washington
She Tells Sea Tales is an evening of sea stories told by women mariners in support of maritime programming for women and girls.
Support women-forward programming
Back in person for 2023! Experience an evening of real sea stories, told by the women mariners who have lived them, in this beloved sell-out event that connects women from across all waters. Hilarious and heartbreaking, raw and brutally honest, She Tells Sea Tales offers an intimate glimpse into the lives of women in the maritime industry.
This live storytelling event provides a welcoming and safe space for all people who identify with the women’s community to share their unique connections to water. Folks of all gender identities are invited to attend. Ticket sales and donations help support the Northwest Maritime Center’s women- and girls-centered educational maritime programs, including the Girls’ Boat Project, through our Give Like a Girl fund.
Tickets are not guaranteed at the door, though some day-of-show tickets may be available. Seating is first-come, first-served.
This year we are offering free childcare during the event for a limited number of children. Learn more.
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photo by Ashlyn Brown
The Classic Mariners’ Regatta is beautiful classic boats, high-caliber sailors racing their hearts out, and a friendly atmosphere. Since 1984 the Classic Mariners’ Regatta has animated Port Townsend Bay with the Wooden Boat Foundation spirit that is quintessentially Port Townsend. With hand-sewn award pennants and a courtyard dinner, this is a regatta weekend not to miss.
Reserve Your Spot Now
$30 | $20 for Students (under 18) | Doors open at 5 PM
Year after year, She Tells Sea Tales is a sold-out event. Please buy your ticket online in advance to reserve your spot.
Meet Ashlyn Brown
As a kid, Ashlyn followed her mother’s adventurous moves from a Virginia farm to the mountains, the Caribbean, and Asia. As a teenager in the US Virgin Islands, she was introduced to sailing and love. A strategic parental move sent her to NC School of the Arts and then a year in Central Java with a Batik clothing company. This led to a job in Japan where she married and had a daughter. When that fell apart, she left Japan with her one-year-old and a duffel bag, back to St. Croix hoping to find what was lost.
It was a harsher reality than before, so when offered a position on a 118’ yawl with her toddler, she hoped the sea would save her. She figures the sea did save her, but the skipper nearly killed her. After 19 years and 80,000 sea miles as a live-aboard cruiser and charter host, she miraculously reunited with her soul mate. In Port Townsend, she has found home and friendships, created PT Watercraft with Russell Brown, cruised BC and Alaska, volunteered with the PT Marine Trades Association and Chamber, and loves it all.
Meet Inger Rankins
Inger was born in 1961 in Kristiansand, Norway. It is nearly the southernmost city in Norway. “Tropical Norway,” as it is often called, as the sea can get up to 75°F at the warmest in the summer. She grew up swimming and boating in and on Skagerrak, the sea between Norway and Denmark, and left her hometown when she was 19 years old. After spending two years in Oslo, she moved to Los Angeles for 10 months to work, then traveled the USA by Greyhound for two months before heading back to Norway. Her travel bug was then born, and she was in and out of Norway from 1983 onward.
In 1989, Inger landed in Port Townsend to spend the summer with her then-very-good friend. They were supposed to stay the summer and then head up to Canada, but things happened, and they are still here—34 years later. They have a business named Northwest Sails & Canvas, Inc. Inger spends a big part of her daily life on boats for pleasure or for work. She loves the water, having lived close to it most of her life, and does not think she can ever live without it.
Meet Sarah Kolbeck
Sarah Kulin Kolbeck has come full circle back to her roots. She was first exposed to boat building and repair growing up at Wolf Creek Boat Works in SE Alaska—the shop and the marine ways her home and playground. That was followed by the family’s move to Port Townsend where she continued to be immersed in the marine trades. After graduating from the University of Colorado at Boulder with degrees in art history and administration, she spent many years managing art organizations and galleries.
Now back in Port Townsend, she has taken on the commitment of managing her family’s yacht rigging and spar building business, Port Townsend Rigging. Project planning for her clients has been particularly satisfying. Her spare time is full: sailing, racing, and tending to her Thunderbird sailboat; climbing and skiing in the mountains; and being grateful that she can share these activities with her daughter, Mya, who is equally adventurous! Sarah’s natural curiosity leads her down many paths, including architecture, boatbuilding, painting, and modern dance. “The creative life is a life worth living“
Meet Erica Lichty
Erica Lichty was born and raised in the PNW. Her father was a boat captain and her mother a designer. After graduating from the California State Maritime Academy and working on oil rigs and supply boats, Erica applied her skills in the yachting world. She has spent 22 years as a self-made interior yacht and residential designer. During that time she has maintained a very healthy involvement in the outdoor community in the Pacific Northwest and currently holds her 100 Ton Masters License. She would like to nurture growth in our community and leave a legacy for her family and others. Her organization, SEASTR PNW, is a not-for-profit organization focusing on socio-environmental advocacy.
In addition to running her non-profit, Erica is also the paddle columnist for 48° North magazine, a Maritime Education Coordinator for the new Maritime High School in Seattle, and is active in the paddle racing community when the time allows. She was the first female to finish the SEVENTY48 race twice on SUP and was also the fastest woman to complete the race on a SUP. Her race story was documented in a 2021 film called Stand Up.
Meet Kathy Pool
Raised on a Georgia coastal island, Kathy Pool has never been far from saltwater. After graduating from college, she gravitated to Lopez Island, WA, where her first employment was crewing on a gillnet boat in the Strait of Juan de Fuca. It was the summer sockeye season where the afternoon westerlies regularly blew. That night she was so seasick, she decided this was her first and last trip. The owner of the boat promised if she returned for the next night’s opening, she would not be sick. He was correct, and she was hooked!
Her maritime career has spanned over 40 years: writing for a fishing publication, gillnetting for salmon, longlining for halibut, and buying gillnet fish. Now retired, Kathy is happy to not be hunkered down in an engine room changing the oil, covered with soot from cleaning the oil stove pipe, nursing her wrist tendinitis after a longline trip, or laying on the gravel under a boat’s keel scraping barnacles. She is, however, grateful for the over 40 round trips on the Inside Passage and is proud to boast that she could sleep between watches, wake up, look out the window, and know where the boat was.
Meet Amanda Thieroff
Amanda Thieroff is a culinary artist, farmer, outdoor educator, and adventurer. Originally hailing from New York City, she got her start sailing and making music on the sloop Clearwater and went on to sail on the schooner Adventuress and Lady Washington before cruising the Inside Passage to Southeast Alaska aboard the motor vessel Delphinus. She has worked several seasons teaching seventh graders how to longboat with the Northwest Maritime Center. Amanda currently lives in Port Townsend with her pup, Finlay, peddling vegan ice cream, growing vegetables, and hiking in her spare time.
Stay tuned for the 2021 CMR plan!
Classic Mariners' Regatta Criteria
We have opened up the criteria of Classic Mariners to expand the racing fleet beyond wooden boats!
The Classic Mariners’ Regatta is now open to yachts that have been built to a design or in the spirit of sailing yachts prior to 1967. There will be an acceptance committee that will determine if your boat meets this criteria. They will also consider boats that were built in the “Spirit of Tradition.”
Registration & Race Entry: $60
Registration for the Classic Mariners’ Regatta includes:
- Entry for all three Classic Mariners' Regatta sailboat races
- Welcome Gathering and Skippers' Meeting
- Five beverage tickets (Yes, they're good for beers, too.)
- Entry to the awards ceremony on Sunday afternoon
Please register in advance for the race; however if you're not arriving until late Friday night, please call 360.385.3628 x104 or email email@example.com and you can register at the skippers meeting on Saturday.
If you would like to dock with the Classic Mariners group, which may mean rafting up, please call or email the Northwest Maritime Center office to add your name to the list for CMR raft-up. If you would like a more private dock, please call Point Hudson directly to reserve your own space. Either way, when you arrive at Point Hudson please proceed directly to the Point Hudson Marina office to pay for your moorage. Approximately 1.25 per foot.
Northwest Maritime Center Office: 360.385.3628, firstname.lastname@example.org
Point Hudson Marina Office: 360.385.2828
A weekend of races!
This year the Classic Mariners' Regatta, SEVENTY48, and Race to Alaska are back to back in a weekend of epic fun and on-the-water adventure! So come on down to the Northwest Maritime Center and Pope Marine Park to watch and race in the regatta, cheer on SEVENTY48 racers as they arrive from Tacoma, take part in the R2AK madness on Sunday during the Ruckus, and see the R2AK teams set off on Monday.
Registration Coming Soon
"She Tells Sea Tales celebrates the successes and tribulations of working and traveling on the water. It celebrates the joys and frustrations of being a minority in a male-dominated endeavor."
– KELLY WATSON
About Give Like a Girl
When you make a gift to Northwest Maritime Center's Give Like a Girl fund, you're supporting programming like the Girls' Boat Project that engages girls and women in maritime activities. We are committed to providing opportunities for girls and women to gain maritime skills through the lessons of the sea. More than that, we are committed to providing opportunities for girls and women to challenge themselves to discover their most authentic selves and break free of the gendered expectations that they face.
About the Girls' Boat Project
The Girls' Boat Project is a program for middle school girls that creates an inclusive, supportive space for young women to work together and gain confidence through learning skills in boat building, woodworking, and sailing. The program is led and taught by an all-female staff of educators and professional mariners.
The Project meets every Wednesday afternoon from 1:30-4:30 throughout the school year and culminates with an journey on Port Townsend Bay in the spring. Women and girls’ programs at Northwest Maritime Center welcome those who identify as women and girls regardless of assignment at birth. These programs also welcome people who identify as non-binary or gender nonconforming and want to be in a women-centered environment.
Read our blog to learn more about the Girls' Boat Project.
For the evening of She Tells Sea Tales we are offering onsite childcare for a limited number of children. Ages 5-12 will be able to participate in an age-appropriate movie and crafts session, followed by a snack. Reach out to Courtney Stroming at email@example.com, by March 1, to reserve a spot and for any additional questions.
Past She tells Sea Tales speakers
Mary Jane Gibson