Sail aboard a piece of colonial history! We're welcoming the Onrust, a replica of the vessel built by Dutch Captain Adriaen Block and his crew in 1614, to Mortensen Riverfront Plaza. Enjoy a cruise on the Connecticut River, tour the ship and learn the history of the Dutch in America at our interactive dockside exhibit. Don’t miss the daily cannon demonstration at 1 on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and at noon on Sunday.
Cruise the Connecticut River
One hour, $30 per person Thursday, 3:15 & 5:30 pm, Friday, 3:15 & 5:30 pm, Saturday, 3:15 & 5:30 pm
Anchors Away! Enjoy magnificent views of the city, river and its banks as you cruise aboard the Onrust. Learn about life on a ship in the 1600s, Dutch exploration and how the river has changed over the 400 years since Captain Block sailed up the Connecticut River. Space is limited for this unique on water experience.
Happy Hour: Going Dutch
Thursday, June 21 | 4 - 8 pm | Mortensen Riverfront Plaza
Celebrate the arrival of the Onrust or the end of the workday at our "going Dutch" happy hour.
$10 adults, $5 children 12 & under Thursday - Saturday, 10 am - 2:30 pm, Sunday, 10 am – Noon
Explore the Onrust dockside. Tour the ship above and below deck, learn about ship construction, defending the ship and using the cannons, the life of Captain Block and his crew and the history of trade and colonial relations between the Dutch and Native Americans. Tickets will be sold dockside.
Free Dockside Activities
Free, open to the public, Thursday - Saturday, 10 am - 2:30 pm, Sunday, 10 am – Noon
Try your hand at our interactive history stations including knot tying, rope making, map puzzles of Block’s famous navigational charts, and hands-on skeleton model of a ship’s hull. Learn the history of the Onrust, Dutch exploration and the New Netherland colony, background on Huys de Hoop (Fort Hope), located at present-day Dutch Point, Hartford, about the relationship between the Dutch and Native American in the Connecticut River Valley, the impact of the Connecticut River’s geography on Dutch exploration and how the replica Onrust was constructed.
About the Onrust
Captain Adriaen Block was a Dutch explorer whose mission in the Americas was to chart the coastal waters and rivers of the Northeast region in order to establish a trading network. The original Onrust was constructed in New York Bay when Captain Block’s original ship, the Tyger, caught fire while overwintering 1613-1614. He and his crew then constructed the Onrust, which was the first yacht built in the New World. Once the Onrust was complete in 1614, Captain Block sailed it to Fort Nassau – the site of present-day Albany, NY – where he helped establish the first fur trading post in the New World. Captain Block explored the waterways around Long Island and Connecticut, including the Housatonic, Thames, and Connecticut Rivers. He sailed past present-day Hartford before turning back to explore Narragansett Bay, Buzzards Bay, and Cape Cod. Though the final whereabouts of the original Onrust are unknown, its historical significance prompted the production of a replica ship. The New York-based Onrust Project constructed the replica from 2006-2009, employing 17th-century Dutch shipbuilding methods and materials to create a highly accurate model of the Onrust, a vessel intentionally designed for fast travel along coastal and inland waterways. Today, this floating museum provides the public with a living history experience of 17th-century life and maritime exploration.