Our conference started off on a high note with the New England Patriots winning the Super Bowl. The low came during the middle of the week when Boston was hit by a doozy of a snow storm stranding several people at airports. But, and thank goodness for technology, we were able to Skype in speakers and shuffle around a few sessions to accommodate late arrivals. As long as there is coffee, sailors are nothing if not amenable to a few fluctuations in a plan.
And so, we gathered in snowy Boston to discuss that which we love best – sailing, sail training and tall ships. Once again, we were able to offer Crew Grants funded through the Liz Strojny Memorial Fund. We had people from as far away as Hawaii (sorry for the snow, guys!) make the trek to join us. You can view the agenda here and photos are posted on our flickr page.
On the last night of the conference, Prom Night, we had our annual TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE(r) Awards and Sail Training Awards. All of the winners were nominated by their peers. During some the presentations, it was hard to keep your composure as the accolades of the recipients were read out loud. Hearing how these people and programs have changed lives is incredibly inspiring and renews our passion for sail training and tall ships. Below is a list of the winners – Congratulations to everyone!
TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE(r) Great Lakes 2016 Awards
Sail Training and Education – Baylake Bank Tall Ship® Festival, Green Bay
Marketing and Promotions – Redpath Waterfront Festival Toronto
Economic Impact – Tall Ships® Erie 2016
Operations and Logistics – Tall Ship® Celebration: Bay City (photo unavailable)
Ship and Crew Vote – Tall Ship® Celebration: Bay City (photo unavailable)
Port of the Year – Tall Ship® Celebration: Bay City
Perry Bowl – Pride of Baltimore II
2016 Sail Training Awards
Volunteer of the Year – Michael Langley
Sail Trainer of the Year – CAPT Matthew Meilstrup, USCGC EAGLE
Sail Training Program of the Year – Marimed Foundation/Makani Olu
Sea Education Program of the Year – “Celebrating our Rivers” Place-based learning on board the floating classroom, Piscataqua
Lifetime Achievement – Eben M. Whitcomb, Jr.