Frequently Asked Questions about the Festival
Can I bring my pet to festival?
No dogs or pets are allowed inside the gates or on the docks during the official hours of the festival: 9:00am -7:00pm Friday and Saturday; 9:00am - 5:00pm Sunday. While we're a dog-friendly, dog-loving harbor all the rest of the year, we leave our dogs at home or onboard boats during the event. Festival wooden boats with pets onboard must keep them onboard during the official hours and if nature calls... keep them on short leash and go directly to the designated areas for relief and back to the boat. Thanks for your cooperation.
Where do I find accommodations?
Many folks book a place to stay one year in advance and most local accommodations are booked by June, so plan early for overnight reservations. Start by visiting one of these Port Townsend websites:
Port Townsend Chamber of Commerce
Visitor Information (brochure available)
www.ptchamber.org / (360) 385-2722 or toll free (888) ENJOYPT
Where can I camp or park an RV?
A few RV spaces are available at the Port of Port Townsend Point Hudson marina, however, these are usually booked by April. Email email@example.com for information about 4-day Festival RV package starting November 1st.
You may also contact the following local resources:
Fort Worden State Park Year round home of Centrum for the Arts, PT School of Woodworking, PT Marine Science Center and many walking trails. One mile beach walk from festival. Spaces usually fill by May. Book early!
Jefferson County Fairgrounds Home of our county fair and community events. A quiet, park-like, low cost option. Showers, quiet, access to bus transit. Will always find room for you! Last minute van, RV or tent campers welcome.
Can I anchor on the waterfront?
Yes. All anchored boats are asked to stay seaward of the eelgrass protection buoys and leave clearance for the large Wooden Boat Festival boats moored on the City, Union and NW Maritime Center docks. Pay close attention to marine forecasts as the waterfront is exposed if winds kick up from the south. Bring your dinghy to the NWMC beach and tie off above the tide line. Main Gate tickets and entrance is located nearby.
Can I get to Port Townsend using public transportation?
If you can't sail, paddle or row to Port Townsend, there are an increasing number of other low cost and low impact ways to get here and much better coordination of schedules via the internet. The governments of Jefferson County and Port Townsend, Washington, have pledged to help the community reduce its GHG emissions to levels 80% lower than 1990 levels by 2050. Northwest Maritime Center & Wooden Boat Foundation support these efforts and hope you'll consider these options when traveling to and from Port Townsend.
At JeffersonCan.org (Climate Action Now), people can now find dozens of ways to get to and from Port Townsend in one website. Jefferson Transit (our local public bus line), who began using Biodiesel two years ago is included in the site, as is a new public transportation option on Google and new links that include the Washington State Ferry schedules in the mix.
Is there another marina in Port Townsend during festival?
The Port of Port Townsend
Point Hudson Marina is completely reserved for festival wooden boats. However, the larger Boat Haven marina (at the other end of town) is available. Call the moorage office as you approach the entrance: (360) 385-2355. Shuttle buses run to/from the Main Gate every 10 minutes from the Jefferson Transit Park & Ride.
Where is handicapped parking?
The Washington Street Parking lot (skateboard lot) is reserved for Handicap Parking. Sidewalks and curbs are recently improved to provide handicap access all the way to Northwest Maritime Center and the Main Gate entrance to Wooden Boat Festival. Load and unload zone is also available there, near the Volunteer Tent. Due to heavy traffic during the festival, take care to pull completely out of roadway when loading or inquiring from PTPD Traffic Volunteers.
Is the festival ever cancelled?
No. Boats and exhibitors prepare all year for this event. Everyone is prepared for fun come rain, shine, ferry cancellations and wind!
How do I get to the festival by ferry from Whidbey Island?The Coupeville ferry
runs daily to/from Fort Casey State Park to downtown Port Townsend. Visitors arriving from Whidbey, North Seattle, Canada and the northwest corner of Washington can opt to park on the Whidbey Island side of Admiralty Inlet and walk-on the ferry. Main Gate of festival is approximately 6 blocks from the ferry terminal and shuttle buses run every 10 minutes. Get the latest ferry information from Washington State Ferry website
Do I receive a paper ticket when I purchase festival tickets online?
No. Tickets are in the form of a wristband that you can pick up at Will Call on arrival or buy at Main Gate when you arrive. If you buy online, print the final screen of your online purchase and bring it with you to the Main Gate entrance. Look for the sign for Will Call. Bring photo ID and tell us your name. You will receive a Wristband and can immediately proceed into the Festival. Avoid the lines and purchase tickets online
When and where is Commercial Exhibitor Check in?
Exhibitor check in is Thursday from 12:00-7:00pm. In August, Booth and Land Boat Exhibitors will be mailed a Parking Pass and map to the Jefferson Street (Skateboard Lot) entrance. A Traffic Volunteer will greet you in your car, then you will receive your Registration packet and receive directions how to proceed to your tent location. Cars are not allowed inside the grounds after 5:00pm on Thursday, so plan to unpack quickly then move your car to Exibitor Parking. Festival music, food and Bar Harbor open at 5:30pm. Hundreds of boat crews, locals and volunteers are on the grounds that evening, so take advantage of the opportunity to open your booth early! Official festival start time is 9:00am Friday.
How much are Festival Tickets and what does the price cover?
One-Day Tickets are $15 or $10 for Senior over 65 and Teens. Multi-Day (Thursday night through Sunday) Tickets are $30 or $20 for seniors and teens. Access to all Festival boats, all presentations and demonstrations, exhibitors, music performance, kids' activities and food vendors is included in the price. More than "admission fee", this is a donation to our programs year round!
Where do I park my vehicle?
Limited general public parking is available early mornings in downtown and uptown Port Townsend within walking distance of the Festival, however, we highly recommend everyone park at the Jefferson County Park & Ride, (turn left at Safeway) then ride the biodiesel Jefferson Transit bus. Shuttles run every 10 minutes daily. Bicycle racks and handicap parking are available on Water Street, within one block of Main Gate. Limited Exhibitor-Only parking is available on the grounds. Memorial Field provides limited parking for a fee that goes to support youth programs in Jefferson County). Pay at the gate, or free at one of the other locations.
What are the steps for bringing my boat to US from Canada?
Boats may be checked in in the Port Townsend US Customs Office between 8am-4pm, Monday through Friday, with an appointment. Vessels over 30 feet must have a Customs Sticker. Get that by going to www.cbp.gov, click on Travel tab, then User Fee Decal Program. Apply online and print out the record of doing so, in case decal doesn't arrive by departure time. Contact the Customs Office at 360-385-3777 with any questions or to schedule an appointment.
What if I am arriving early or staying after the Festival with my boat or RV?
Festival wooden boats and RVs may arrive early (prior to Thursday noon) at Point Hudson marina and RV Park by making reservations with Point Hudson marina staff at 360-385-2828. Moorage after 5:00 on Sunday can also be arranged with Point Hudson staff. "Arrival day" is one of the most fun for spectators and is a great way to become involved as a volunteer. You'll also have your RV or boat settled by the time the crowds arrive. Come early and watch the festival come to life!