See It All Seattle


Ballard Locks Boat Parade

Jun 21, 2017

The Locks Centennial Boat Parade at Hiram M. Chittenden Locks – July 9th, 2017

Be a part of Ballard’s history this summer, and enjoy the commemoration of the Ballard Lock’s opening in 1917. The historic schooner Adventuress will pass through the locks and lead a marine parade of vessels from Salmon Bay into Lake Union re-creating the original opening day in an unforgettable tribute.

BallardLocks1960-courtesy-WAStateArhcives.jpg#asset:579Beginning at 10am, attendees will have the pleasure of watching over 50 historic boats pass through the locks in a parade on the water. Take advantage of this special opportunity to see the Glory Be and Keewaydin, two beautiful vessels that glided through the locks in the original opening day parade of 1917. Spectators can also check out a 6-foot-long scale model of the S.S. Roosevelt- the first vessel to cruise through the Locks- on display during the event. by the Fremont Historical Society, the event will offer a variety of maps, photos, and information to illustrate the positive impact the Ballard Locks had on the transformation of the Fremont neighborhood. Like-minded organizations such as the Rainer Valley Historical Society, Friends of the Ballard Locks, Maritime Folknet and will aid in commemorating this centennial event with additional information that boasts the historical significance of the locks and the importance of the Pacific Northwest waterways in connecting us from one neighborhood to the next.

Learn more about this completely free event

Fun facts about the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks*:

  • Nearly 50,000 “lock through” the locks each year 24 hours a day, except during maintenance
  • Significant numbers of salmon migrate through the Locks annually — in a good year over 500,000.
  • The Locks are a Seattle Icon, National Historic site and a top tourist site attracting over 1.3 million visitors a year.
  • The grounds are open from 7am to 9pm, 365 days a year.
  • No fees are charged for visitors, commercial ships or private boats.  Even guided tours and summer concerts are free.  

*According to

Visitors of the Locks Agree…

“The Ballard Locks is a cool place to check out; they are basically an elevator for ships between Salmon Bay and Lake Washington- because of their different water levels. I've never seen a locks system before, and it was an interesting (albeit slow) experience watching ships come into and out of Salmon Bay.” – George L., Yelp

“We enjoyed trying to decide which variety of salmon we were seeing using the picture guides posted on the walls. The kids we were with (ages two through eight) really seemed to enjoy walking around, watching the boats, and searching for salmon. We also saw a train crossing the bridge over the waterway and watched the same bridge open to allow a boat through.” – Allison B., Yelp

“If you and your kids are into this kind of thing the locks are a fun stop. Inside the visitors center they have windows that are underwater so if the salmon are running you can see them!!! Worth a stop if you are touring Seattle!” – NJ Robin, Tripadvisor

Points of Interest

at and around the Ballard Locks

  • Ballard Locks
  • Carl S. English Jr. Botanical Garden
  • Commodore Park
  • Ray's Boathouse
  • Space Needle
  • Chihuly Garden and Glass
  • Pacific Science Center
  • Seattle Aquarium
  • Seattle Monorail
  • Argosy Cruises
  • Children's Museum
  • Museum of Flight
  • Woodland Park Zoo

Tag #seeitallsea

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