Gloucester History Sail Aboard Ardelle: Wed July 20th – 6PM

If you have not joined us on one of these sails I highly recommend it, a bit of history, a gorgeous backdrop and plenty of liquid refreshment. A few weeks ago I joined Captain Harold aboard his pinky Ardelle for a Fiesta history sail and we had a great time as always. I’m really appreciative of Harold and his family for inviting me back again for two more history sails this summer. These days I don’t get too many opportunities to be on the water, but every time I’m on Ardelle as we coast past our fabled waterfront, it stirs up old memories.

51n7GiwgDOL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_I love my town, I love its history, but I like to have fun too! No script, no set route, and everyone is invited to spin their own yarns. If he’s up for it, I’ll bring my partner in crime Jim Lynch along as usual. Forget the guy from Dos Equis, this 92-year old is the real “most interesting man in the world.” and has seen it and done it all. So come join us as we knock back a few and talk about what makes this place so special. Space is till available so get your tickets here!

Gloucester History Sail Aboard Ardelle: 6/22/16

10438318_10204254174500721_5772747195657271566_nTo kick off the monthly summer history sails aboard the Ardelle, Captain Harold Burnham has invited me on his evening sail, 6/22/16 from 6-8pm. But this isn’t just an ordinary Wednesday evening sail, it is also the first night of St. Peter’s Fiesta! So in honor of our patron saint, all the Gloucester fishermen – past and present, and my Sicilian-American brothers and sisters, I’ll be including Fiesta history as well. Growing up down the Fort, the Fiesta was as exciting as Christmas and it makes me proud that I get to watch my son, now 6, eagerly await the rides, the food, the family and the fun. Whether you are a part of the celebration, a local resident, or a visitor wondering what all the commotion is downtown, come join us as we get the party started under sail. Viva!

Adventure Joins Schooner Challenge – June 6th

It’s gotten bigger – the Essex-Built Schooner ADVENTURE has agreed to join the annual Schooner Challenge! HUGE! Grab up a bunch of your friends and add to the fun and join the crews of the ADVENTURE, The ARDELLE, and the LANNON in the famous Schooner Challenge to help to support the preservation of the museum‘s EVELINA M GOULART. Tickets will go fast! Sign up now.

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New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center Now Online

This past summer I got to meet and work with a great group from New Bedford that is creating a much-needed fisheries museum in their famous port. In anticipation of their grand opening on June 25, the New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center website is now online.  With the help of Executive Director Laura Orleans and members of their industry advisory group, I researched over a century of New Bedford fishing history. In the process of creating an historical timeline of the port, and writing essays of New Bedford fishing evolution, it was fascinating to learn how much of what we see as modern commercial fishing began in “the whaling city.”

My only regret (besides not eating my weight in scallops)? Not being able to spend more time in New Bedford. But with the new museum opening up shortly, I have yet another reason, to get down there.

Essex Shipbuilding Museum 2016 Opening April 2

It’s that time of year again, the Essex Shipbuilding Museum begins its 2016 season this Saturday. It still a little chilly in the shipyard, but at least we don’t have snow and ice in the yard like last year. As always, we will be open on weekends during the spring from 10-5. The guided tours, including the ship model collection at the Schoolhouse, happen 3 times a day at 10:30, 1 and 3, but self tours of the shipyard are available all day long.  Our newly refurbished signage for the EVELINA M. GOULART will be installed shortly and our gift shop has both new items and some of your old favorites. So come by this weekend, either for a tour, or maybe just a cup of our great coffee. Hope to see you in the shipyard in 2016!

Thoroughbreds Under Sail: Revised Edition Now In Print

One of my missions this off-season was to revamp some of my books, especially those that have only been available on Kindle. Thoroughbreds Under Sail was my first attempt at self-publishing and was based upon a couple of articles I wrote for European magazines a few years back. For this new revised print edition I decided to add a little more information about the schooners and also to correct some errors. Also, I have added more photos, some from the photo collections at the Essex Shipbuilding Museum.

Thoroughbreds Under Sail The Surviving Gloucester Fishing Schooners

The new print cover

My original intent for these small books was to be “light reads” for visitors to Cape Ann. Quick reads with relevant information so visitors can quickly learn a bit about our sights and heritage. For those wanting something that goes more in depth…well I’m working on that. For the past few years I have been working on a larger project that focuses on the transitional vessels like the Evelina M. Goulart and the American Eagle of the 20’s and 30’s. It’s a subject area that is close to my heart, as well as many others in Gloucester fishing families since in many cases these were the vessels that established our families not only as Gloucester fishermen, but Americans as well. Stay tuned.