Mis­sis­sippi cruises on de­layed sta­tus

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - TRAVEL -

Vik­ing River Cruises, the Switzer­land-based com­pany known for its ex­ten­sive list of lux­ury Euro­pean and Asian cruises, has hit a snag in its plan to of­fer cruises on the Mis­sis­sippi River.

Mayor Frank Klip­sch of Daven­port, Iowa, which was sup­posed to be one of the cruise line’s dock sites, told WQAD news out­let in March: “They’ve said don’t plan on any­thing right now be­cause there’s still work to be done, there’s no boats that have been built, there’s no routes or any­thing that have even been de­ter­mined.”

Vik­ing an­nounced its plan to ex­pand into North Amer­ica in Fe­bru­ary 2015, with a ten­ta­tive launch this year. How­ever, in March 2016, the com­pany is­sued this state­ment:

“At this point in time, we do not have any de­tails to share, but we are ac­tively work­ing with rel­e­vant au­thor­i­ties to launch on the Mis­sis­sippi River, with a pro­jected maiden sea­son that has been ad­justed to 2018 in or­der to ac­com­mo­date an up­dated timeline.”

While the cruise line has made no com­ment to the rea­sons be­hind the change, there is spec­u­la­tion from in­dus­try news out­lets such as Travel Weekly that the cul­prit is the 1920 Jones Act, which says boats sail­ing from one Amer­i­can port to an­other must be owned by U.S. com­pa­nies, built in the United States and have a U.S. crew.

Vik­ing would have to buy and retro­fit Amer­i­can-made boats or build new ones.

In De­cem­ber, Vik­ing is­sued a state­ment to the Min­neapo­lis Star Tri­bune:

“We are ac­tively work­ing with our part­ners to launch on the Mis­sis­sippi River, but at this point in time we do not have any de­tails to share re­gard­ing prod­uct specifics or a launch timeline.”

As of press time, Vik­ing River Cruises did not re­spond to re­quests for com­ment.

— Jen­nifer Nixon

GIRARD’S UNI­VERSE

BLOOM­FIELD HILLS, Mich. — South­east­ern Michi­gan’s Cran­brook Art Mu­seum hosts the U.S. de­but of an ex­hi­bi­tion fea­tur­ing the work of an in­flu­en­tial mod­ernist de­signer who was less well known than many of his con­tem­po­raries.

“Alexan­der Girard: A De­signer’s Uni­verse” runs through Oct. 8 at the Bloom­field Hills mu­seum. It fea­tures hun­dreds of ex­am­ples of Girard’s work, in­clud­ing fur­ni­ture, tex­tiles, graph­ics, ar­chi­tec­ture, draw­ings and sculp­tures.

Or­ga­niz­ers say Girard em­braced and helped shape a mid­cen­tury mod­ernism em­ployed by Charles and Ray Eames, Eero Saari­nen and oth­ers. Mu­seum Di­rec­tor An­drew Blau­velt calls Girard “the se­cret sauce” in a move­ment that em­braced whimsy, color and decor — things Euro­pean mod­ernists had ear­lier re­jected.

The Italy-raised Girard, who lived in Michi­gan from 1937 to 1953, was fur­ni­ture maker Her­man Miller’s di­rec­tor of tex­tile de­sign for 21 years.

— The Associated Press

Vik­ing River Cruises

Vik­ing River Cruises, known for their lux­ury long­boats ply­ing Euro­pean and Asian waters, has de­layed plans for Mis­sis­sippi River cruises.

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