Princess Becomes Skagway Gold Rush Sponsor

Reed Travel Features

LOS ANGELES -- Princess Cruises and Tours became an official sponsor of the City of Skagway's Gold Rush Centennial celebration.

Skagway, at the foot of the White and Chilkoot passes, was the gateway to the Klondike in the 1890s.

It is celebrating its gold-rush heritage through the year 2000.

A $10,000 donation by Princess Cruises and Tours will be used to offset the cost of the Skagway Statue, which will be unveiled July 13.

It was on July 13, 1896, that a ton of gold left the town by boat for Seattle.

It was the first consignment of the Klondike riches to arrive in the Lower 48 and started a frenzied rush by thousands of prospectors who sailed to Skagway and then hiked across the passes into Canada and on to the Klon-dike.

The statue will be positioned on the waterfront directly opposite the Princess Tours offices, prominently displayed for arriving cruise passengers.

Princess has been a fixture in Skagway for 30 years, according to the tour company's president, Dean Brown, and features historical Skagway on every one of its 100 cruises this summer.

"Because we bring more visitors to Skagway than any other operator, we want to show our support for this important community project," Brown said.

The centerpiece of the Skagway statue will be the depictions of a prospector and a native Alaskan packer.

Princess will operate four ships in Voyage of the Glaciers (Gulf of Alaska) sailings this summer and two in Inside Passage cruises out of Vancouver, British Columbia, all of which can be combined with a choice of 50 different tour options.

For more information or to make reservations, call (800) 421-1700.

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