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APHC Alaska Cruise Adds a Broadcast
The APHC Alaska cruise embarks from Seattle July 14 (Vive, liberte!) and docks there on the 21st, a trip that all of us at the office are eagerly looking forward to. And a city as good to visit as Seattle—you shouldn't just rush in and rush out. So we've decided to do a live show of A Prairie Home Companion from the Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery in Woodinville, just outside Seattle. We'll tape it on Friday the 21st at 7:30 pm and it'll be broadcast on July 29th. (We've done live broadcasts outdoors in Seattle and at 3 pm, broadcast time on the Pacific coast, the sun can beat down on the multitude pretty fiercely.)

The musicians on the cruise will be playing the show at Ste. Michelle. And of course Guy Noir will be dealing with some jiggery-pokery from the cruise and Ruth Harrison, Reference Librarian, will be pursuing a purloined dictionary.

If any of the cruisers would like to stay over and see the show, we have a plan which puts you up in downtown Seattle at either the Sheraton or Westin, offers a bus tour of the city, a bus out to the Winery, vouchers for samples of Ste. Michelle's superior wine and dinner from their better than average food kiosks, a walk around the grounds, a chance to watch rehearsal, then the show, and a bus back to town. All this for $180 per person plus the hotel of your choosing.

Now when you see me skulking around the boat, you'll know why: I am gathering material for the next Saturday's News from Lake Wobegon. So please feel free to tell me your family history and don't leave out the good parts.

Dear Voyageurs of the Prairie,
After due deliberation, we've decided to launch Prairie Home Cruise II from Seattle for a week of sailing along the coast of British Columbia and Alaska to Juneau and Glacier Bay and back. We leave Friday, July 14, and return Friday, July 21, and we'll linger in Seattle to do A Prairie Home Companion on July 21, which will be taped for broadcast on July 22, from the lovely Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery.

Actually it didn't take much deliberation. Cruise I from Boston last summer was so much fun, we couldn't wait to do it again.

The week will include all the things that people said they enjoyed about Cruise I—the group singing, the plethora of intimate musical performances, the workshops, the naturalists, the star-gazing, the late-night carousing in the Crow's Nest, the Amateur Night—and though I don't have a list of talent as yet, I'm sure that the APHC regulars will be on hand, and we plan to have many fine musicians and entertainers of the Pacific Northwest aboard.

The coastline that we'll see is magnificent, of course—the coastal mountain range rising up, the blue-green conifer forests, the rocky coastline, the islands strewn along the Inland Passage, the morning fog, the brisk salt air that cures the blues, and at Ketchikan and Juneau and Sitka, you'll forge past all the souvenir flotsam to find what your heart desires, a look at wilderness, a walking seminar on wildlife, a flight to a glacier, a confrontation with the mighty King Salmon—anything in the catalogue of experiences that you crave.

It was aboard a Holland America ship to Alaska a few years ago that my family discovered the pleasures of cruising, the floating city that takes you places and allows old and young and agile and creaky to journey together and everybody gets a good night's sleep and you never have to forage for food. And on this ship you'll be in the company of people who like music and books and are curious about the world. You'll get to hang with musicians and hear aspiring writers talk about the craft and the trade. At almost every waking moment, there will be something interesting happening somewhere.

And if you wish to extend your vacation—perhaps add a train trip to Vancouver or ride the gorgeous Coast Starlight south to Oregon or California—we'll be happy to steer you in the right direction. We're working up a nice package for you to join us at the Winery for the broadcast show. We'll be offering it to you soon.

And if Alaska isn't your cup of tea, there's always Cruise III which we're hoping to arrange for summer, 2007, along the coast of Norway.

Looking forward to July,

A Prairie Home Companion Cruise is produced by Prairie Home Productions, presented by American Public Media Group. Ship's registry: the Netherlands.

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