Thursday, August 18, 2011

Schooner Ardelle Will Sail Into Gloucester on Weds., Aug 24

Ardelle on her first sail down the Essex River last Sunday. Thank you
Leo Formenoy for the foto! 
Take a moment to read this press release and come on by Maritime Gloucester to welcome us to our new home!


Sailing history will be made again in Gloucester on August 24 AT 6:30 PM when the Schooner Ardelle arrives at its new home at Maritime Gloucester, formerly known as the Gloucester Maritime Heritage Center, on Harbor Loop.

The addition of the Ardelle to the Gloucester fleet means that two "passenger-fisherman" schooners built in a Burnham boatyard in Essex will be sailing regularly from Gloucester.  It will join the Thomas E. Lannon, also built by Burnham, and launched in 1997.

The Ardelle, built and operated by Harold Burnham, will offer day and evening sails to the public.

It will also serve as a floating classroom and laboratory for the several thousand students who participate in hands-on marine science education programs at Maritime Gloucester.

Burnhams' have been building schooners since the early 1800's and Essex has turned out more than 4,000 of them.   The traditionally built double-ended "pinky schooner" Ardelle is “sawn frame and trunnel fastened” using indigenous resources, both material and labor in the tradition of the Essex boat building industry.

In addition to its educational role she will offer several two-hour public trips a day and be available for charter for weddings, birthdays, family events and other special occasions.

"I could not be more proud of the people who helped build this vessel in the Essex tradition and the opportunity to sail regularly from Maritime Gloucester, which continues an historic community linkage that goes back centuries.  It's an opportunity to help people discover and value our past while also helping students develop their science and math skills and explore future opportunities that may not have previously been obvious to them," said Harold Burnham.

Heritage Center Changes Name, Welcomes Ardelle

Maritime Gloucester, under the Heritage Center banner, has become the region's leader in hands-on education in marine science and related fields.  It now serves more than 3,000 students from Cape Ann area schools each year and expects to double that number in five years.  It also hosts some 30,000 visitors to the Stellwagen National Marine Sanctuary exhibit, the aquarium touch tanks and to Gorton's Gallery where the story of fitting out schooners in the late 1800's is told.

The name change, and its new tag line, "Oceans of Discovery", reflects its evolving mission as an educational center that continues to feature Gloucester's maritime past.

The change, to be formally unveiled Friday, September 2, at the organizations annual Bluenose Gala, is the result of a major strategic initiative begun last year under the late Harriet Webster, who served as executive director from the organization's earliest days, to emphasize its growing success delivering hands-on marine science education to students.

In addition to the new name and tag line, Maritime Gloucester has set a goal of doubling its student population, now at more than 3,000, in five years.   It's looking to offer its programs to middle school students throughout Essex County and beyond.

Geoffrey Richon, president of the Maritime Gloucester board, called the arrival of the Ardelle "one of the most important events in the 11-year history of Maritime Gloucester.  Having the Ardelle as an integral part of Maritime Gloucester's programs for students and the public makes an important statement about Gloucester's role in maritime history, as well as about the importance of science and technology to a sustainable environment and a strong economy."

Rockport middle school teacher Carolyn McWilliams, whose students are active participants in Maritime Gloucester's programs, said the addition of the Ardelle "will significantly enhance the already impressive hands-on learning experience at Maritime Gloucester.  It's an experience that both excites and inspires students to discover their passion for science and math.  For our students, the programs offer a period of discovery that couldn't be found elsewhere.  The addition of the Schooner Ardelle is a tremendous building block in the learning process."

The Ardelle will begin sailing for the public soon after its arrival and will be fully integrated into Maritime Gloucester's education programs this fall.  For additional information visit the Ardelle website --  -- or call 978-290-7168.

1 comment: