The Flagship Niagara League announced today that it will delay the sailing season for the U.S. Brig Niagara until August 2020.
They released the following statement:
“The League’s concern about efforts to prevent and control the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus also rules out sailing to the Great Lakes Shipyard in Cleveland in April, as they had planned. Nothing is more critical to the League than the health and safety of our staff, crew, and visitors.”
“The current plan is to keep Lettie G. Howard fully operational this sailing season. The League may delay the start of Letties’s sailing season, depending on the state of things in May. All members of the Ship’s administrative staff can sail as Captain and crew of Lettie so once it is safe to do so Lettie can be operational in two weeks.”
According to Captain Billy Sabatini, executive director and fleet captain, “This is not what we want to happen to the sailing season, but I can assure everyone that I am not concerned for the longevity of our organization. Without the U.S. Brig Niagara sailing, we can still operate with a small, efficient team both in the office and on the Lettie G. Howard.”
“We have the right people in place and a determination to work together to see this through. We have been through many squalls together in the past. This one will pass like all the others, and we will find smooth sailing on the other side. We know brighter days are ahead, and the U.S. Brig Niagara will set sail again,” said Sabatini.
“The Flagship Niagara League says it will rise to the occasion when sailing can begin again. It’s essential now to follow the recommendations from the CDC and state government to beat the virus and have the best season ever. The League would like to thank the community and the Pennsylvania Historical Museum Commission for their support, and they look forward to welcoming visitors on board as soon as possible. We are all in this together.”