American Queen Voyages Embarks On Pacific Northwest River Cruise Season. Celebrates Eighth Season with Paddlewheeler Godmother Claudette Waggoner and Vancouver Leaders

American Empress - formerly Empress of the NorthAmerican Queen Voyages celebrated the kickoff of the Pacific Northwest sailing season yesterday onboard the American Empress®, the largest riverboat west of the Mississippi River, in Vancouver, WA.

The paddlewheeler’s Godmother Claudette Waggoner, wife of American Queen Voyages Founder and Chairman John Waggoner, welcomed regional leaders onboard including Vancouver Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle, Visit Vancouver WA President and CEO Cliff Myers, and hospitality industry and port leaders before an evening sail away.

“I was honored to christen the American Empress eight years ago and since that time it has been inspiring to watch the American Empress officers and crew introduce thousands to this magnificent region,” said Claudette Waggoner. “This is such a special year for American Queen Voyages as the company celebrates its 10th anniversary and I wish to thank the city of Vancouver for the ongoing partnership and warm hospitality.”

The current sailing features American Queen Voyages Culinary Ambassador Regina Charboneau as a special guest, showcasing the cuisine and culinary history of the Pacific Northwest. Waggoner and Charboneau hosted a tour and luncheon onboard which included cauliflower carrot soup, crispy duck breast and poached pear complimented by Willamette Valley pinot noir.

Vancouver, WA, situated across the Columbia River from Portland serves as a homeport of the American Empress with 40 sailings scheduled March through mid-December in 2022. American Queen Voyages operates nine-day, one-way itineraries between Vancouver and Spokane (Clarkston, WA) along with seven-day roundtrip voyages from Vancouver.

Featured stops are Astoria, OR; Stevenson, WA; The Dalles, OR.; Richland, WA.; and Clarkston, WA. Guests enjoy a pre-cruise hotel night, unlimited included guided tours, lectures and evening entertainment.

“We are proud to welcome American Queen Voyages passengers once again,” said Anne McEnerny-Ogle, mayor of Vancouver. “The American Empress continues to be an important economic driver for our region and we look forward to her many guests visiting our community again and again.”

A river cruise on board the American Empress offers unforgettable scenic cruising along the Columbia and Snake Rivers in the Pacific Northwest, following the historic route of Lewis and Clark. Boasting a vast collection of artifacts and artwork from native Alaska, the Gold Rush and the sternwheeler era in and around Portland, Oregon, the paddlewheeler holds as much beauty and intrigue as the dramatic scenery unfolding on the river outside.

The American Empress’ has a capacity for 221 guests and features four decks and 112 comfortable staterooms, including single rooms for solo travelers and luxury suites, making cruising on this authentic paddlewheeler an unforgettable experience.

(American Queen Voyages)