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July 3, 2016
Gearing up for largest Nordhavn Rendezvous ever
More than 30 Nordhavns are set to converge on the small coastal town of Petersburg, Alaska this weekend as the owner-driven Nordhavns 2 Alaska – or N2AK – gets underway. Boats coming from as far as Australia and South Africa will spend three days in the area known as “Little Norway” to celebrate all things Nordhavn.
In addition to the 32 Nordhavns, ranging from 35 to 68 feet, making their way north to Alaska are 16 sets of owners who are arriving sans boats, plus a number of distinguished guests and speakers. N2AK organizer Jim Frantz estimates around 100 people will attend the event that will be filled with catered meals, entertainment, and educational forums.
The entire event is being organized completely by Nordhavn owners, many of whom – with decades of experience cruising in their boats - will be leading most of the forums. Even some of the meals – from cooking to clean-up – are being taken care of by the attendees. But owner-driven events is nothing new: the 2007 MedBound rally was owner organized, not to mention the boats that participated in the Great Siberian Sushi Run (GSSR).
The N2AK marks the largest single convergence of Nordhavns at any one time. “This started as a few Nordhavn friends meeting in Little Norway, Alaska,” marvels Frantz. “What happened?!”
It’s also the most visiting boats Petersburg’s harbor master has ever had to serve at once. Despite the complexities involved in accommodating such a large group, the town recognizes the potential economic benefits of the rendezvous.
With less than a week away, Frantz feels like the group is well prepared for a spectacular event. Organizers created an N2AK chat group with online resource documents on everything from the Rendezvous master plan, tidal and current effects on the area and day excursions from Petersubrg.
Dan Streech, president of Pacific Asian Enterprises, Inc. (PAE), knows the effort that goes into putting together this kind of event, having done it with the Nordhavn Atlantic Rally (NAR) and the Around The World (ATW) trip. “We at PAE offer our huge thank you and appreciation to Jim and Lynda Frantz and (co-organizers) Gerry and Doug Cochrane. I have seen the spreadsheets and know that there are hundreds of details and issues that have been faced by them and solved with talent, grace and a smile,” said Streech, adding, “With probably somewhat of a surprise, they found themselves on a bucking bronco and they held on!”
Streech will give the opening remarks at the event and offer moral support, but other than that is opting to let the owners run the show. “There are SO many smart and talented people in the Nordhavn world both inside of PAE and among the owners and vendors and others who are so ready and willing to share that I can’t add much to that pool of knowledge and won’t try,” he said. “What I do know about is how Nordhavn came to be…the starting point of the Nordhavn concept and the years preceding that fateful decision to build the Nordhavn 46. In many ways, it was less grand and less clear than you might imagine, but given that Jim (Leishman) and Jeff (Leishman)’s ‘little tug boat’ changed the world of boating and cruising, I guess that it was pretty grand after all. “