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Our Historic Roots & Heritage


As a major international tall ship event, Sail4th 250 traces its heritage to the first Operation Sail in 1964, endorsed by President John F. Kennedy.  OpSail took place in New York Harbor along with an International Naval Review.


Continuing to mark American milestones, New York hosted historic tall ship extravaganzas for the 1976 Bicentennial, the 1986 Statue of Liberty centennial, the Columbus Quincentennial in 1992, the Millennium celebration of 2000, and the Bicentennial of The Star-Spangled Banner in 2012. 


Sail4th 250 continues the extraordinary maritime tradition of gathering the world's tall ship fleets. 


As heirs to the courage and sacrifice of the men and women who arrived in this land by ship, we now embark on a new age of global cooperation among freedom-loving peoples.


Sailors embarked on a naval vessel stand in awe as the tall ships pass in review.

The U.S. Coast Guard barque EAGLE, the sail training vessel of the Coast Guard Academy, always leads the Parade of Sail.

During the 1976 Bicentennial Celebration, 6 million people visited New York to visit the Tall Ships.  In 2026, Sail 4th 250 is expecting approximately 10 million visitors.

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