Have you heard? Maritime Gloucester has an innovative new space in the works, scheduled to open spring 2021!
Our newly redesigned Maritime Science Center will take some of our seasonal and underutilized space to create a cohesive year-round learning environment. This will include touch tanks, exhibit space and classroom space!
To learn more about this project and how you can help us reach our fundraising goals please visit our website! https://www.maritimegloucester.org/maritime-science-center
The Science Channel was filming an episode about the Vikings today. The show features the ship Polaris, a handcrafted reconstruction of an original Viking coastal fishing vessel. Polaris is docked at Maritime Gloucester.
Viking Ship Drops Anchor in Massachusetts
By Sean Horgan
ESSEX, Mass. (AP) — Cape Ann’s fleet of vintage row and sail vessels has a new addition, one that hearkens back to mists of Viking heritage forged in the fjords of western Norway.
The Polaris, a 37-foot reconstruction of an original Viking coastal fishing vessel dating to 1030 A.D., has made its way across country to the Essex Shipbuilding Museum from its birthing boat yard on Fidalgo Bay in Anacortes, Washington.
The plan, according to owner Stuart Boyd, is to berth the Polaris this summer at Maritime Gloucester, where it will be available from early June on for short public rowing trips, private charters and corporate team-building outings throughout the inshore waters of Cape Ann.
“We want to be an inspiration for small groups working together and having fun at the same time,” said Boyd, whose company is named Norsvald after the ancient Norse word for “power from within.”
If you had the opportunity to see the schooners docked at Gloucester’s gorgeous new floating dock, located at I4-C2, know that it was constructed by Beacon Marine Basin and installed by Brett Ramsey’s company Ramsey Marine and Dock Construction. The floating dock was created by Gloucester Maritime and the Schooner Festival Committee to provide schooners with a convenient place to moor.
The new dock was well utilized during the three day Schooner Festival event. By late Sunday afternoon, there were a total of five schooners, as well as the Tall Ship Lynx, moored at the floating dock!
The dock will be removed within the next few weeks, to be reinstalled next August for the 35th Annual Gloucester Schooner Festival.
Together with the Essex National Heritage’s 20th anniversary celebration, 131 Trailblazing organizations where honored at last night’s grand gala, held at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem. Over 300 Essex Heritage supporters were in attendance.
Very special guest Secretary John Kerry, who helped craft the legislation in 1996 that designated the area (and worked with Senator Kennedy over many years to secure funding), gave an inspiring speech highlighting the fact that the past twenty years of this unique public-private partnership has created the tremendous success that is the Essex National Heritage area.
Congratulations to Essex National Heritage and all the Trailblazers!
A special toast was given to the following Trailblazers:
Preserving this Special Region: Essex County Greenbelt Association; Connecting People to Place: The Trustees of Reservations; Building & Growing Our Future: Peabody Essex Museum; Advancing Our Educational Mission (tied for first place): Lowell’s Boat Shop and The House of Seven Gables. Of special note to Cape Ann residents, Maritime Gloucester came in second place and Essex Shipbuilding Museum came in third place in the category Advancing Our Educational Mission.
Last of the 2016 super moon trifecta, the December Frost Moon (also called Full Cold Moon and Long Night’s Moon by Native Americans) was the brightest moon of the year according to the Farmer’s Almanac. Whatever called, it was stunning to watch as it went down over Gloucester’s skyline on Tuesday morning.
While at Gloucester Maritime during the Schooner Festival Maritime Heritage Day I learned that Massachusetts has a state sea shell! We have a state bird, the Black-capped Chickadee; a state flower, the Mayflower (Epigaea repens); a state tree, the American Elm (Ulmus americana); we’ll soon be voting on a state butterfly, and how exciting to learn from a member of the Boston Malacological Club that our state flower is the New England Neptune (Neptunea lyrata domcemcostata).
The shell is found from the Grand Banks off Newfoundland to North Carolina. According to the BMC, the shell is rarely found on beaches but is commonly taken in lobster traps. Next time when beach combing I’ll be on the lookout and am wondering if any of our Cape Ann lobstermen find them in their traps. Please write if you do. And if you have any spare shells to share, that would be wonderful 🙂
Neptunea lyrata has many common names including wrinkled whelk, ribbed Neptune, inflated whelk, and lyre whelk. The New England Neptune is a marine gastropod mollusk, a type of large sea snail.
About the Boston Malacological Club, from their website: The Boston Malacological Club was founded on March 14, 1910. They are the second oldest continuously active shell club in America (after the Pacific Conchological Club) and just celebrated their centennial. The Club was the proud host of the 2010 Conchologists of America Convention.
The BMC is a not-for-profit, all-volunteer group, whose charter is to promote the study of land, freshwater, and marine mollusks, related creatures and their environments. The BMC participates in basic research (through local field trips), welcomes guests to its monthly meetings, and sponsors educational programs such as shell shows. In 2005, the Club donated $10,000 to malacological research through the grants program of the Conchologists of America.
BMC members practice responsible shell collecting in accordance with the COA’s Conservation Resolution.
Meetings are held in room 101 of the Harvard University Museum of Comparative Zoology, 26 Oxford St., Cambridge, MA (Directions) on the first Tuesday of each month from October to May. Meetings run from 8pm to 10pm, unless otherwise noted.
Image courtesy Google image search
Photos from the Schooner Festival Mayor’s Reception held Friday night on the grounds of the Coast Guard station. After the reception guests headed over to the Maritime Gloucester gala, An Evening Under the Spars, this year held at the Beauport Hotel. The gala sold out early and was a grand success. Proceeds from this event directly support Maritime Gloucester’s Ocean Explorers program and educational marine science outreach to all Cape Ann public schools.
Wednesday morning’s exquisite sunrise from Pirate’s Lane
The sun’s light at daybreak coming up over the harbor after the snowstorm lent a golden aura to all. I find our neighborhood–the people, the architecture, the boats, the sweet little robins–to be a never ending source of inspiration. See panoramic view of Smith’s Cove sunrise, posted yesterday.