DEPOE BAY: “Fleet of Flowers” Ceremony

Organizers have the 79th annual event
ready to go, and it should be sunny.
See you there!

11:00am

U.S. Coast Guard Station / Depoe Bay Harbor
240 Coast Guard Drive
Depoe Bay, Oregon 97341

[NOTE: the official ceremony including speakers starts across from the U.S. Coast Guard station. This is down on the main harbor dock (known as the “charter dock”). To get there, you can park near HWY 101 and walk down to the docks. Or, you can park on one of the streets in the neighborhood down around the dock]

Program Details | Directions

Incredible views of Memorial Day “Fleet of Flowers” from up on the Depoe Bay bridge or down on the docks.

Memorial Day ceremony in Depoe Bay
The “Fleet of Flowers” event on Memorial Day in Depoe Bay tradition dates back 77 years. The event expands the theme of Memorial Day to honor not just U.S. military personnel who have died in service but all seafarers (that is, folks employed to work aboard marine vessels) who have been lost at sea.
Memorial Day “Fleet of Flowers” ceremony in Depoe Bay begins down on the charter docks. This video gives a fuller sense of the beauty of this dockside ceremony and the investment of the Coast Guard and full Depoe Bay community. From the dock you can then see the fleet of boats, led by the Coast Guard boats (center and above left, in the boathouse), up close as they leave the dock (below). Alternatively, you can watch the fleet’s progress from a more scenic vantage point, up on HWY 101 up on the bridge..
Lead boat in the Fleet of Flowers, filled with the cedar wreaths and flowers that passengers will drop into the ocean, passes under the bridge and heads out to sea. Read more about the history of the Fleet of Flowers on the city’s website.

The entire city of Depoe Bay rallies together to make this amazing event happen each year, raising funds and meticulously assembling gorgeous cedar wreaths that go on the boats. You can follow along with all the progress and get involved as a volunteer by checking the Facebook web page.

Photos of what Memorial Day was like in Depoe Bay in 1950, the sixth year of the Fleet of Flowers ceremony. Lincoln County Historical Society Archive, Oregon State University. (24 May 2024). Fleet of Flowers Depoe bay Ceremony Retrieved from https://oregondigital.org/concern/images/df65vm88s

20 thoughts on “”

  1. I am a 100% percent service-connected USAF veteran and 71 years old, born and raised Oregonian and would like to see the F-15 fly over where would the best place to see them with my wife.

    1. Hi Marilyn. Spots on the boats are via reservations. My understanding is that reservations are hard to get, especially this close to the event. There is no longer a website with contact information for Fleet of Flowers, and the various people involved with the event are hard to get a hold of the two weeks before Memorial Day, because they are so busy getting the event together. However the event maintains an active Facebook page which I encourage you to visit. There are lots of posts and photos of the event prep up there now. I have found that folks are good about responding to posts there. *I would suggest also emailing fleetofflowers@gmail.com and asking about who exactly you should contact about making a reservations for next year.

      I hope this helps. It is supposed to be a sunny day there on Monday, so if that holds and you are able to attend, I know you will still have a memorable experience watching from the bridge or the dock. Take care, Marilyn! -Marc

  2. Where is the best viewing area to watch the Fleet of Flowers ceremony? And, will it be postponed for rain?

    1. Hi David and thanks for your good question. It really depends on what you want to see. The official ceremony, including the speakers, starts down on the harbor docks at water level across from the U.S. Coast Guard station. To get there, you can park near HWY 101 and walk down, or, you can park on one of the streets in the neighborhood down around the dock. If you like seeing the boats up close, including the Coast Guard boats as they leave the dock and really see the colors and unique beauty of that many cedar wreaths and flowers adorning the boats, then situating yourself at the dock is the way to go. Some folks prefer to see the boats and people on them as they pass under the bridge and the fleet is in formation as it goes out to sea. I have seen the ceremony this way and it’s powerful. Just park away from the bridge and walk up and maybe bring binoculars. As for your question about rain, are you joshing? This Oregon Coast event goes on rain or shine. Only a storm with dangerous swells would prevent these boats from going out. Hope this helps! Take care, and I hope you have a very meaningful Memorial Day. -Marc

  3. Hello friends! My wife and I were just wondering how we could get on a boat and help drop the wreaths this year. Are there any spots open?

    1. Hi Brian. The folks that I am sure can help with your question are event organizers Kathy Wyatt or Clary Grant. *Here is the Fleet of Flowers official web page with their phone contact information: https://www.fleetofflowers.info/support-us
      I hope this helps and that you and your wife have a meaningful Memorial Day.

  4. Do you still have any of the t-shirts or sweatshirt from this year’s fleet of flowers for sale ?

    1. Hi Sharon. I know, I would love to have one of those too! Those were available initially the week before the event at the Depoe Bay Community Center where all the volunteers make wreaths etc. in preparation for the event. I just pinged the Fleet of Flowers event organizers and they indicate that, unfortunately, there are no sweat shirts left only a few tees. What they have left will be at the SeaHag in Depoe bay. You can keep checking (for information as to whether they produce any more shirts going forward) on the Fleet of Flowers Facebook page. They are pretty responsive if you post a comment/inquiry to one of the posts there or Facebook message them from there.

  5. I miss, terribly, being a part of Fleet of Flowers. I was involved with the week long preparations for 22 years. I was always so touched by the volunteers…especially the children, who so lovingly made the wreaths that were placed on all of the boats . Being at the forefront of the preparations for 13 of the 22 years and working closely with the United States Coast Guard personnel, Firefighters, and numerous other dignitaries fills me with wonderful memories I’ll cherish forever. 🇺🇸

    1. Hi Cynthia. Thanks for your post. Yes! Fleet of Flowers is absolutely happening this year. The ceremony starts at 11:00am.

  6. This is Steve, Master at Armes for the Oregon Coast Vets. We have done the flag post seems like forever. I don’t think we have been asked this year, and also last time there was not enough cedar so i cut down one of mine for it. How’s it going this time? Please, whats going on?

  7. Hi There,
    How can we reserve to be on a boat that goes out and drops off wreaths this year on Memorial day. This event has always had a special meaning for me as my father and uncles ashes were sent out to sea. I’d like to reserve 2-4 spots if possible.
    Glenda Roe.

    1. Hi Glenda. Thanks for your post. I spoke with Melissa at the Depoe Bay Chamber of Commerce (which helps with Fleet of Flowers event on Memorial Day) and gave her your contact info. She will call you to answer your question about how to arrange to be on one of the boats. I sincerely hope you have a meaningful Memorial Day in Depoe Bay. Take care!

      1. Thank you for the information on Chief Depoe, Sr. and the history! I was raised in Lincoln City.

        1. You are most welcome, Claudine. Lincoln City is a wonderful place. I hope you and yours have a very nice Memorial Day weekend.

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