The Pride of Baltimore II, the replica tall ship that serves as an ambassador for Baltimore, says it will have to stay at the dock this season unless it can find $530,000 needed to operate.
Pride II used significant funds from its endowment in the years after the 2008 financial downturn, and there is no longer a cushion to fall back on.
The ship marks its 30th anniversary this year, and right now she is undergoing maintenance as part of a re-fit. You can read about the necessary upgrades reported in the Bay Bulletin by clicking here.
It costs about $1.2 million per year to operate Pride II, depending where she travels during the seven-month season (April-October). The ship does generate revenue from appearance fees, day sails, private charters, and guest crew experiences. But those are still not enough to cover maintenance and operating expenses.
The organization needs $230k by March 2018, plus a commitment of $300k between July and December 2018, to have at least a partial sailing season in 2018.
Pride of Baltimore, Inc. is asking for private donations from individuals and the business community, and for the city and state governments to commit to renewed funding.
Says the organization, “We are sending up a flare to those communities, officials, supporters, and tall ship enthusiasts across the globe who have enjoyed visits from Pride II in years past. We are leaving no stone unturned to reach our goal, and we still plan to hold a successful Spring Sailabration fundraising event on June 7, 2018.”
To make a donation, click here. You can become a monthly donor by joining the Privateer Society. To volunteer for the ship’s outreach programs, seasonal maintenance, or to help out in the office, click here.
Pride of Baltimore, Inc. is also asking people to show support by sharing what Pride II means to you on social media, and tag @prideofbalt.
The ship’s Spring Sailabration 30th birthday party—an important fundraising opportunity—will be on June 7th.