MidwestWeekends.com — Your Travel Guide to the Upper Midwest

What is the tall ships schedule for 2016?

- Lorraine, Columbus, Wis.

In 2016, Tall Ships America will bring the bigger tall ships back to the Great Lakes.

This non-profit organization promotes sail training for youths and adults. Many of the ships take on paying adult sail-trainees to sail from one festival to the next.

In the western Great Lakes, festivals will be in:

Newcomers include the Spanish galleon El Galeón Andalucia, a 170-foot wooden replica of the 16th-century galleons that Spain sent to explore Florida and the West Indies; When and If, a 63-foot schooner built in 1939 for Gen. George S. Patton; and Draken Harald Hårfagre from Norway, a 115-foot replica of a Viking longboat.

Named for the ninth-century's first king of Norway, the longboat's name is pronounced roughly DRA-kon Hara HOR-far-gra, or, in English, Dragon Harald Fairhair.

Returning ships include the 198-foot U.S. Brig Niagara, a replica of an 1812 warship from Erie, Pa.; the Pride of Baltimore II, a 157-foot reproduction of an 1812 topsail clipper from Baltimore; and the Mist of Avalon, an 83-foot schooner from Canada's Maritimes provinces.

From the Great Lakes, ships include Chicago's Windy, Milwaukee's Denis Sullivan, Traverse City's Madeline and Bay City's Appledore IV.

If you can't make it to the Great Lakes, two replicas of the 15th-century Portuguese caravels that Columbus sailed to the New World are spending the summer on the Mississippi River.

The 65-foot Niña and its sister ship, the 85-foot Pinta, arrive in Grafton, Ill., on May 27, then will  spend about 10 days apiece in Burlington, Dubuque, Winona, Hudson, Lake City, Clinton and Davenport.

They're operated by the non-profit Columbus Foundation of the British Virgin Islands.

And remember, quite a few schooners call Lake Michigan home, and you can sail on them whenever they're in port.

They include the Denis Sullivan in Milwaukee, the Edith M. Becker in Sister Bay, the Coaster II in Marquette, the Windy in Chicago, the Friends Good Will in South Haven and the Madeline in Traverse City.

For more, see Following the tall ships.

For advance notice of tall-ships festivals, follow Tall Ships America, a non-profit sail-training organization, on Facebook. 

Last updated on June 7, 2016