Following last year's sell-out maiden voyage, we decided to make the Mark Steyn Club Cruise an annual event. And so the second Steyn cruise will leave Vancouver on September 4th and sail aboard Holland America's beautiful ms Volendam through Alaska's Inside Passage to Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay and Ketchikan, before docking back at Vancouver on September 11th.
I'll be doing double-duty, hosting the cruise, and also hosting live editions of The Mark Steyn Show at sea - with among others the great Dennis Miller (fresh from his debut comedy tour with yours truly); former presidential candidate Michele Bachmann; Michele's near namesake and Canadian rock royalty Tal Bachman; the makers of the film Gosnell Ann McElhinney and Phelim McAleer; and two stars of our free-speech special Kathy Shaidle and Andrew Lawton. We'll address all the heavy geopolitical stuff but we'll also kick loose in the evening with dinner, convivial receptions and some late-night laughs and music. And we'll do a lot of the stuff we do here but this time at sea, including Alaskan-themed editions of Tales for Our Time, Steyn's Sunday Poem and Song of the Week.
There'll also be plenty of opportunity for relaxation and revelry and getting to know your fellow Club members and our special guests. And every day we'll enjoy world class service from Holland America, exquisite dining, all the benefits of a flagship cruise ship, and the spectacular beauty of the Alaskan coast and the Inside Passage.
We've reserved the best cabins throughout the ship - and in all of the various categories so that you can make accommodation arrangements that suit you best. We're excited to welcome you aboard for the second annual Steyn at Sea cruise - but tempus fugit, so don't leave it too long! (As with most travel bookings, the price is better the earlier you book.)
So picture yourself on Holland America's lovely ms Volendam, along with your fellow Steyn Club cruisers and me and my guests, enjoying seven full days and nights of shipboard fun as we ponder the collapse of western civilization. There'll be:
*Live editions of The Mark Steyn Show, including your participation in our Clubland Q&As;
*Plenty of chances to meet, schmooze and hector me and my guests;
*Exclusive Club parties and dining with yours truly, our guest speakers, and your fellow Steyn Club cruisers;
*Exclusive cocktail receptions and Crow's Nest concert parties;
*Accommodations and all meals included;
*Port charges, taxes, fuel surcharges, and government fees all included;
*Most shipboard activities included;
*A fully escorted cruise by Steyn Club staff and the best cruise organizers in the business;
*And a few surprises along the way...
If you're one of those people who have always wanted to come on a cruise but have yet to take the, er, plunge, well, there's never been a better time to stop procrastinating. You don't have to be married, or even going steady: Nearly thirty per cent of our cruisers are single, so, if you fancy your chances with a Steyn Club member as the moon hangs over the Tracy Arm and the sound of me singing "Cat Scratch Fever" wafts up from below deck, give it a go. You'll have the time of your life - from September 4th to 11th, aboard the ms Volendam, or, as we'll rechristen it for the week, HMCS Steyn*.
(*Here's Mark's Club Ship)
PS Our Club has members all over the map - the Czech Republic, Thailand, Vanuatu - so there isn't really any ideal cruise itinerary other than a round-the-world voyage (which we'll consider a year or three hence), and we appreciate that this one is more convenient for Steyn Clubbers in western North America. But I was very touched by the turnout from Poms, Paddies, Aussies, Kiwis, Hong Kongers and beyond on our maiden voyage. Kate Smyth, for example, found it well worth the trip from the Antipodes:
The best thing about the inaugural Mark Steyn Cruise (apart from the host himself) was the people who surround Mark: his brilliant guests, his loyal and attentive staff, and his discerning fans! I have never encountered so many friendly, interesting and sincere (and fun!) people together at a gathering. The daily Steyn-at-Sea 'sessions' were outstanding, needless to say, not to mention the opportunities to chat with so many kindred spirits (to use Anne Shirley's phrase). Richard correctly observed that the location for future trips (wonderful as it was this time aroundâ€” Quebec City being my favourite) is a secondary consideration.
Not sure Alaska's spectacular glaciers will easily take second place to The Mark Steyn Show, but we'll do our best to keep it competitive. And thanks for making the trip all the way from Australia for that first tentative voyage. By the way, for those jetting in to our port of embarkation from far afield, Cindy, our cruise manager, can help with flight and hotel bookings: If you'd rather speak in person and you're dialing from almost anywhere but Oz (ie, the United Kingdom, Europe, Asia, Africa, South America), it's 001 (770) 952-1959; if you're calling from North America, it's 1-800-707-1634. Or you can email your query here. As last year's cruisers know, Cindy is super-helpful.