Yesterday, we were honored for the opportunity to host another Delta Queen Tribute Event in Marietta, OH. Mayor Michael Mullen and other city representatives visited the boat and enjoyed a tour. Delta Queen Captain Paul Thoeny presented the mayor with a plaque representing our appreciation to the citizens and city. Mayor Mullen presented a lovely proclamation supporting the Delta Queen.

Delta Queen Captain Paul Thoeny and Marietta, Ohio Mayor Michael Mullen

Delta Queen Captain Paul Thoeny and Marietta, Ohio Mayor Michael Mullen

Autumn is creeping in and it was a little cool and blustery. I guess this detered the crowds from coming down to the landing for the Delta Queen’s second to last visit to Marietta. Other events like last week in Paducah, Kentucky have drawn more than 200 citizens to the shore. Marietta is such a “steamboat” town, we had been hopeful of sharing our appreciation with a larger crowd. But the band, singers, cruise director and I forged on with our presentation, thankful for the 30 or so that did attend. It is disappointing to see the boat slip quietly unnoticed into the pages of history. Our Delta Queen cruise guests did fill the decks and enjoyed the presentation.

I find myself in a state of shock and denial that (without Congressional action) tomorrow will be the Delta Queen’s last visit to Pittsburgh and next cruise will include her final stops in Wheeling, WV, Marietta, OH, and Point Pleasant, WV. Such wonderful river towns. I hate to think about it being the last time we will enjoy each other. I can’t believe the Delta Queen has only four weeks remaining.

Please contact your Congressional representatives. Help all you can.

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At each port the Delta Queen calls on during her 2008 season, a “Tribute Event” will be conducted to thank the city and citizens for their years of hospitality. There’s usually one scheduled each cruise so the onboard guests get a chance to enjoy the festivities.

It has been a joy to welcome the mayors and other city representatives from communities along the river to come aboard the vessel for a tour and an event ceremony. We set up a public address system on the Texas Deck bow so area citizens can gather along the waterfront and enjoy the proceedings.

The event includes the presentation of a plaque by the Delta Queen’s Captain to the mayor or city representative. The city reps usually also have a proclamation, plaque, key to the city, etc. The Delta Queen band, Riverboat Rhythm, plays some music and our onboard entertainers sing. In between songs, I share with the crowd snippets of history about the Delta Queen. I wrap up with an update on the Delta Queen’s struggle to continue service and encourage the crowd to contact their House and Senate representatives to encourage their support. We conclude with a calliope concert as the boat departs.

Captain Larry Wilkinson, Dover Mayor Lesa Fitzhugh, and Bill Wiemuth

Captain Larry Wilkinson, Dover Mayor Lesa Fitzhugh, and Bill Wiemuth

Today we conducted the event for Dover, Tennessee. Dover’s Mayor Lesa Fitzhugh was a delight. I had a great time touring her and several other city representatives around the boat. They were truly fascinated with the Delta Queen and had lots of good questions. Not only did the Mayor present a proclamation on behalf of the city, but we also received a proclamation from the county and another from the Chamber of Commerce. We are so thankful for such kind hospitality and such wonderful warm wishes and enthusiasm.

Here is a special steam whistle salute to Mayor Fitzhugh and the citizens of Dover, Tennessee. Click Here for Whistle-Salute

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