April 27, 2001
Elizabeth Dole may be the greater “marquee” name as the godmother of Carnival Spirit christens that new ship today but an even more Washington, D.C.-centric performance occurred this week. The dedication of Cape May Light, American Classic Voyages’ new river cruise ship yesterday is, like other AMCV vessels, American flagged and not only drew, unusually for cruise ship dedications, a political crowd, but also was “launched” in (well, near) the nation’s capitol. Attendees included numerous governmental folks. The only thing we can’t figure out is the comment by U.S. Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, who said that “every single ship that enters the American flag fleet has vital importance to national security.” The 224-passenger Cape May Light will offer, primarily, 7- and 14-night cruises that ply American coastal waterways (as opposed to AMCV’s Delta Queen Steamboats, which sail U.S. rivers) in the Great Lakes, on the Eastern Seaboard and the Canadian Maritimes. The ship’s sister vessel, the Cape Cod Light, launches this fall. During cold weather seasons, the ships will move south and sail itineraries that stop in ports in Mexico, Belize, Honduras, Costa Rica and Panama.