|Boaters Invited To Join QE2 Farewell Flotilla|
Recreational boaters are invited to say "bon voyage" to the world famous luxury ocean liner, Queen Elizabeth 2, for her final sailing on Thursday, April 10 from Port Everglades, the ship's Florida winter home since 1971.
Staging for the flotilla will take place prior to 4:30 p.m. along the Intracoastal Waterway south of the U.S. Coast Guard Station. The ship is scheduled for departure at 5 p.m. All participating boaters must monitor Channel 14 and maintain the 100-yard security zone established by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Landside well-wishers can watch the QE2's departure from the SE 17th Causeway bridge, the south end of Fort Lauderdale Beach and from John U. Lloyd Beach State Park.
QE2 is retiring from her 40-year sailing career and has been purchased by private equity firm, Istithmar, which has announced plans to convert the ship into a floating hotel and museum in Dubai.
Named by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II in 1967, QE2 immediately captured the upbeat mood of the era. Admired for her sleek, elegant lines and contemporary interiors, she was embraced on both sides of the Atlantic. Upon her launch, the Queen's sister, HRH Princess Margaret, viewed the ship as a symbol of change, noting "This new Cunarder will show that design in Britain is exciting and full of vigorous common sense." Lord Snowdon concurred, writing "what you have achieved with QE2 makes one proud to be British...the mood is breathtaking."
Throughout her history, QE2 spent part of the year sailing Cunard's signature Transatlantic route and the rest in pursuit of the sun. Today, her sister ship Queen Mary 2 carries on the Line's Transatlantic tradition, sailing 24 crossings this year.