May 19

Arrrr You Ready for Adventure?

Emerald City Pirates is a treasure on Lake Union.

How does a pirate adventure tour find its peg-legged footing is Seattle? The endeavor blossomed from a desire to have a job that’s not a job. Peter Ide, who grew up in the Northwest, was a former commercial fisherman and guide who spent years putting people on a boat and showing them a good time. He first encountered the pirate cruise adventure business model while working on the East Coast and a lightbulb went off.

“I was looking for something new, and I thought ‘That would work here!’ I knew that I didn’t want to blend in. I always wanted to do something out of the box. I’m just an old fisherman, but I do know how to get people to have fun,” he said.

Ide started Emerald City Pirates in 2017. His experience in maritime hospitality inspired his pick for Lake Union — it was perfect for a pirate adventure because if its abundant scenery and calm waters.

kids playing with pirate treasure

He fondly recalled his initial humiliation the first time he walked to his ship, Queen Anne’s Revenge, in full pirate garb. But the fishermen docked nearby got a huge kick out of it. Now, Ide embraces his role as a provider of entertainment in South Lake Union.

“I remind our crew members that it’s an honor and a privilege to be able to serve this community, to show everyone a good time. How great is it for people to want to spend their hard-earned money on this small thing that brings joy. We get to do a job that’s fun while we show reverence for our clients and customers. It’s because of them that we get to do something fun for a living.”

Emerald City Pirates offers a Family Treasure Cruise and an Adult Pirate Party Cruise. Families can expect fully interactive pirate experience with a search for treasure, fun games, and talk-like-a-pirate lessons. Kiddos also get to fire the ship’s water cannons as to help defend the honor of Queen Anne’s Revenge. Each kid pirate will receive their choice of one item from the ship’s treasure chest. The Adult Party cruises are for pirates age 21 and older. Guests will enjoy games and contests on the cruise (can you limbo?), plus nightly prizes for the best-dressed pirate.

You can purchase drinks, snacks, and swag from the Queen Anne Revenge on both cruises.

Aside from the regular cruises, Emerald City Pirates offers private charters, which Ide says are the biggest part of his business.

adults dressed as pirates

“With these private charters, our customers can do whatever they want; they can have creative control, or we can do our treasure hunt which is great for team building. We are happy to work with people to build an awesome event. People love being on a boat on the lake,” Ide said.

For the Family Treasure Cruise, tickets are $15 for kids under 18 months, $35 for ages 18 months to 14, $39 for ages 15 to 64, and $32 for ages 65 and up. Adult parties are $35 per person.

Ready for your next arrrventure? Click here to learn more.

Story by Ethan Chung & photographs courtesy of Emerald City Pirates.

At The Center

SLU is the geographical center of Seattle