June Speaker: Vixen’s Voyage: One Family’s 11-Year Odyssey
Each month CWB finds a speaker of wit and experience to talk about his or her special knowledge. It is also an opportunity for CWB members to meet one another and the staff. The program runs from 7pm to 9pm, with opportunities to ask questions. June’s 3rd Friday talk will be held on June 17th.
Just three months after their wedding in 2004, Tiffany Loney and Bruce Halabisky left Victoria, British Columbia, for Hawaii aboard their 1952 sailboat, Vixen, a 34’ John Atkin-designed cutter. This was to be the first leg of an 11-year voyage around the world, including crossing the Indian and Pacific Oceans and three trans-Atlantic crossings. Along the way Tiffany and Bruce added two children to their crew: Solianna and Seffa Jane. The whole Halabisky family will be here to talk about the challenges and rewards of ocean voyaging on a small classic wooden boat.
It wasn’t Vixen’s first circumnavigation. Her first owner sailed her around the world for eight years. Vixen finally wound up in Port Townsend, where she underwent an extensive restoration and where she was purchased by Bruce and Tiffany in 2002. Since their odyssey began, the Halabiskys have visited 30-plus countries and invited countless visitors of all nations and aboard Vixen. Their longest stay was in New Zealand — a year-and-a-half — where Solianna was born. In 2010, their second daughter, Seffa Jane, was born after they reached Brazil.
Vixen has proven herself to be a faultless ocean-going vessel. As Bruce notes, among a world of fiberglass sloops which these days take most people to sea, Vixen’s wooden construction and gaff rig are anomalies. However, as 64 years of hard use can testify, there is a wisdom in her design and a timeless beauty in her lines not found in modern vessels.
The event is free (donations are welcome) and light refreshments will be available.