New Program of Boatbuilding, Rowing for High School Students

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Carl Cramer, publisher of internationally renowned WoodenBoat Magazine, announced details today of the company's newest effort to stimulate boatbuilding and rowing skills to Downeast Maine high school students.

St. Ayles Skiff in Scotland. Photo credit: Peter Nisbet

I fully expect the parameters of this program to be adopted on a nationwide basis, by high schools and communities alike. We are calling the program 'WoodenBoat BARC' (Boatbuilding & Rowing Challenge).

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Carl Cramer, publisher of internationally renowned WoodenBoat Magazine, announced details today of the company's newest effort to stimulate boatbuilding and rowing skills to Downeast Maine high school students.

“This is our pilot program: to involve students from three area high schools to build and then row their very own boats,” said Cramer. “We are honored to announce that shop and marine program students from Deer Isle – Stonington High School (Deer Isle), George Stevens Academy (Blue Hill), and Sumner High School (East Sullivan) will be joining in this first effort. I fully expect the parameters of this program to be adopted on a nationwide basis, by high schools and communities alike. We are calling the program 'WoodenBoat BARC' (Boatbuilding & Rowing Challenge).”

The boat chosen for this program is the 22-foot-long St. Ayles Skiff. Designed by acclaimed yacht designer Iain Oughtred and engineered by Jordan Boats (both in Scotland), this design has already captured acceptance throughout Scotland, where communities have begun building them this year in order to bring communities together in the building and rowing process. The boats each have a crew of five people.

Cramer continued, “The Deer Isle-Stonington High School marine program students will begin building their boat next week, once the first kit has been cut. The goal is to get all three boats launched and competing against each other in early June 2011.”

WoodenBoat has donated one boat kit each to the programs from Deer Isle – Stonington High School and Sumner High School; Hewes & Company (of Blue Hill, Maine), the company that produces the kits, is donating one to the program at George Stevens Academy. Kits are available to anyone in North America from Hewes & Company.

The Landing School (Arundel, Maine) will be providing assistance as well. “The Landing School staff and faculty are eager to contribute their support and expertise to the students endeavoring to learn the art of boatbuilding. A representative from The Landing School will visit each group of Maine high school students to offer guidance and encouragement as these aspiring boatbuilders take on Iain Oughtred's St. Ayles Skiff. The collaboration with WoodenBoat, the regional marine trade and public high schools is an opportunity to advance the craftsmanship and integrity of boatbuilding for which Maine is renowned.”

Products are being donated to the three programs, as follows:

Epoxy – West System (Bay City, MI)
Fasteners, hardware – Hamilton Marine (Searsport, ME)
Paint – Epifanes North America (Thomaston, ME)

Links:

WoodenBoat Magazine – http://www.woodenboat.com
WoodenBoat BARC – http://www.woodenboat.com/barc
The Scottish Coastal Rowing (read about the boat; view videos)– http://www.scottishcoastalrowing.org
Hewes & Company (they produce the boat kits in North America) – http://www.cnc-marine-hewesco.com
The Landing School – http://www.landingschool.edu

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Carl Cramer