February 4, 2013 - About 200 people are in Erie for the 40th Annual Tall Ships Conference.
This time they're in Erie because Erie is a host port for one of at least 20 different tall ships festivals across the country.
Tall ships sailed to the shores of Lake Erie in 2010.
And three years later, those tall ships will be back September 5th through the 9th.
"There will be a fleet of tall ships coming to Erie this summer and it's going to be a fantastic event celebrating the bicentennial of the Battle of Lake Erie," said Bert Rogers, Tall Ships America executive director.
The Brig Niagara Captain is ready for the festival, but says the conference in Erie from February 4th through the 6th is also important.
People came to the conference in Erie from all across the country and places as far away as Denmark, the United Kingdom and Bermuda
"It's awesome for us because we only have one tall ship in Bermuda, so we don't have a lot of learning or to benchmark off of," said Denise Riviere, Spirit of Bermuda. "So it's important to come to these types of events because it's the best connection with other all ships that have similar programs."
Jamie Trost, the Pride of Baltimore captain, is back in his hometown for the 40th annual conference, but he's looking forward to sailing back for the festival.
"As a native of the town, it's fun to come back in on the waters I learned to sail on," Trost said.
2013 marks the 200th anniversary of the building of Commodore Perry's fleet and his victory on the Battle of Lake Erie.
Erie's history will certainly be remembered during this festival.