The National Sailing Hall of Fame, currently located in Annapolis, MD, is relocating to Newport, RI. Executive Director Gary Jobson said the Sailing Hall of Fame hopes to welcome visitors at its new location in the Armory building, located at 365 Thames Street, in May 2020. Jobson said the Sailing Hall of Fame would enter into a contract with the City of Newport to purchase the Armory on or before November 8, before the actual closing takes place. “It’s a positive move,” said City Manager Joseph J. Nicholson, Jr. “It’s good news.”
Founded in 2005, the National Sailing Hall of Fame had hoped to build a museum on City Dock in Annapolis but was unable to raise funds for the project. The main floor of the Armory, which was built in 1894 for local militia, will house a not-for-profit museum while the second floor will be used for an office suite. In addition to the $1.685 million purchase price, said Jobson, the Sailing Hall of Fame will spend another $1.5 million to add a deck and windows at the back of the Armory, repair the roof and make other building upgrades. The City of Newport will retain ownership of the Newport Maritime Center in the basement and the beach area at the harbor side of the property.