Bluenose II to relaunch later this month
The Bluenose II undergoing a major rebuild at the Lunenburg Shipyard, in Lunenberg, N.S. (screenshot taken from novascotiawebcams.com)
Published Tuesday, September 11, 2012 4:16PM ADT
The official relaunch of Nova Scotia’s famed schooner has been set for later this month in Lunenburg.
The Bluenose II will be lowered into the water from a 1,200-tonne marine railway on Sept. 29, following a two-year restoration project.
The vessel will be towed beside Lunenburg’s Fisheries Museum during the all-day celebration.
"So many people have been waiting for this day to come, the excitement is at fever pitch," said Leonard Preyra, Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage. "We expect thousands of people to see the Bluenose II officially return to the water on Sept. 29.”
The Nova Scotia government had hoped to relaunch the schooner earlier this summer but it required more work.
The total cost of the restoration project was $15.9 million. The federal government covered roughly $4.9 million and the provincial government funded the rest of the cost.
"Bluenose II is a Canadian icon that symbolizes Nova Scotia's prominence in the fishing and shipbuilding industries," said Defence Minister Peter MacKay. "Our government invested in this project to spur economic growth, create jobs in Nova Scotia and preserve an important part of Canada's maritime history.”
The celebration of the relaunch will include family entertainment, local talent as well as a video and fireworks presentation.
"It will be absolutely magical to see her back in the water," said Laurence Mawhinney, Mayor of Lunenburg. "We look forward to this wonderful event with great anticipation."
The province says the vessel will be lowered into the water and raised several times in the days before the official relaunch for required tests, including watertight integrity.
The Bluenose II, launched in 1963, is a replica of the original Bluenose, a Grand Banks fishing schooner that won worldwide acclaim for its graceful lines and flat-out speed.
With files from The Canadian Press