Gig Harbor’s award-winning guided Waterfront Walking Tours begins its fourth season in June.
The tours are presented by the Gig Harbor Downtown Waterfront Alliance, Harbor WildWatch and the Harbor History Museum and include a well-versed tour which brings history, nature, visitors and neighbors together, according to a Gig Harbor Downtown Waterfront Alliance press release.
“We’ve found we get as many locals as we do out of town visitors on the tours” Josh Sherwin, the alliance's special projects coordinator, said in the release. “Our waterfront has many stories to tell, and few tell them better than our tour guides.”
“Who knew that learning history could be so much fun, entertaining, and enlightening," Leann O’Neill, one of the original tour guides from the Harbor History Museum said in the release. "By the end of the Saturday tour, it felt like we were all friends.”
The tours begin June 6 and run until Aug. 29.
On Wednesdays, From Skiffs to Spirits tour offers a guided evening stroll along the waterfront with an opportunity to learn about Gig Harbor’s past. From netsheds and the historic fishing fleet to the effects of prohibition in the harbor, yesterday and today. The tour, geared more for adults, ends with an optional tasting at Gig Harbor’s Heritage Distilling Company downtown. This free guided tour begins at 5:30 p.m. Wednesdays June 6 to Aug. 29, except on July 4, and meets at the Harbor History Museum. The tour lasts about one hour.
The original Harbor Heritage: Then and Now tour, will once again be offered on Saturday mornings. The one-way, 1.3-mile route hugs the waterfront beginning at the Maritime Pier and ends at the Bogue Viewing Platform in the Finholm District. Tour-goers will meet at the Maritime Pier at 10 a.m. Saturdays, June 9 to Aug. 25, according to the press release. This family-friendly tour takes a two-hour journey through Gig Harbor’s maritime and natural history. Tour-goers will learn about the harbor’s founding families, pioneering industries and the wildlife and natural resources that brought us all together.
"The native peoples, the Croatian migration, the Scandinavian farmers and shopkeepers, the fishing fleet, the Narrows and Galloping Gertie, a beautiful bay in the Puget Sound, it doesn't get any better that this," tour guide Kurt Grimmer said in the press release.
No reservations are needed for the tours. Anyone interested will need to arrive shortly before the start time to sign in for each tour. Every tour has two guides, and each wears a headset microphone. Since both tours are one way, participants are encouraged to ride the Gig Harbor Trolley to get back near the starting point, or to walk back and enjoy shopping or dining along the waterfront. Comfortable walking shoes are recommended.
The tours are free to the public. For more information visit facebook.com/waterfrontwalkingtours or call (253)514-0071.