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R. Dale Flick 03-03-2009 08:56 AM

*Any Derby Week news?*
Steamboating colleagues:
Busy here for some days and catching up now. With the current financial situation, along with the DQ/AQ out of operation, it dawned on me to ask what news there is for the big Derby Week activities in Louisville? In past years there usually has been some 'press' on this but, so far, I'm in the dark. Keith and others down Louisville way may know. All I could think of for any plans this year would, possibly, be the BELLE OF LOUISVILLE or one of B/B RIVERBOATS vessels like the BELLE OF CINCINNATI. Just asking, so forgive me if I've missed something.

TRAVEL WEEKLY [*Publication to the trade] arrived and it appears the blue water cruise industry along with companies operating on European/Russian/Chinese rivers are pulling in their belts and retrenching faced with the financial squeeze. Several cruise lines now offering 'insurance and refund plans' for those facing job losses. Does not sound good. Yet, hope springs eternal.

Well, what do I know?

Coal Haven Landing, Ohio River.

Suzanne Taylor Martinez 03-03-2009 12:07 PM

An article in the February 21 issue of the Courier Journal stated that the Belle of Cincinnati would race the Belle of Louisville. However, that article is archived and the only way one can get it is to pay for it. There is similar news on the WHAS site also from February 21.
[url=]New opponent set for Belle of Louisville in Great Steamboat Race | LOCAL NEWS | | News for Louisville, Kentucky[/url]

Keith Norrington 03-03-2009 02:25 PM

Yes, the plans are for the BELLE OF LOUISVILLE to "race" the BELLE OF CINCINNATI. The Derby Festival Committee is trying to think of ways to make the event more exciting, as interest has steadily declined over the years. Those of us who were there for the very first Great Steamboat Race in 1963 recall that, for many years, both banks of the Ohio were lined with crowds, [I]The Courier-Journal [/I]carried numerous articles and photos plus all the television stations provided coverage. Now, it's barely mentioned and the general public at large has a "who cares!" attitude about it, being much more interested in the Thunder Over Louisville fireworks show where lots of $$$$ literally goes up in smoke!

In other Louisville waterfront news it was announced several days ago that THE STAR dinner cruise ship, formerly THE STAR OF LOUISVLLE, will permanently cease operations this week, another casualty of the bad economy. The STAR has been a fixture in the Louisville harbor since 1988 and had relocated to the Jeffersonville, Indiana riverfront several years ago.

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