Mission launched to Save Somes Sound
Often referred to as “America’s only East Coast Fiord,” Somes Sound was declassified from fiord to fiard by the Maine Geological Survey in November 1998. Historically called a fiord, Somes Sound seemed doomed to go the way of the former planet Pluto, until the Boattalk Guys from WERU-fm, the local community radio station, decided to attempt to rescue the situation. A mission to preserve the historical classification of Somes Sound will be launched on board Diver Ed’s boat, the “Starfish Enterprise,” on September 14th at 1:30 pm.
WERU’s Alan Sprague says, “The geologists say that Somes Sound does not have any anoxic sediment, which is a criteria for a true fiord. Anoxic sediments contain little to no oxygen and are found in what most people call dead zones.” Sprague continued, “So we’re going to fix that. On September 14th we’re going to drop overboard a granite plaque inscribed with ‘Long live the Grateful Dead,’ thereby creating a “Dead Zone” on the bottom of Somes Sound.”
To raise funds, the plaque to be placed at the bottom of Somes Sound will have the names of “Bottom Liners” etched into it also. Bottom Liners are individuals or organizations who, for a fifty dollar donation, will have their name engraved on the stone and receive a certificate verifying their participation in creating the dead zone and preserving history, along with Somes Sound’s respect. Spectator seating will be available for twenty dollars each to witness the dropping of the plaque from the Starfish Enterprise. Called the “2014 Boattalk Save Our Sound Cruise,” it will leave at 1:30 Sunday Afternoon September 14th from the Northeast Harbor Town Dock for a two hour Cruise on the fantastic Starfish Enterprise.
The creation of a “Dead Zone” in Somes Sound should reinstate the sound to “Fiord” category and save the description “Only Fiord in the Lower Forty-Eight States.” Persons or organizations wishing to become a “Bottom Liner of the Dead Zone Project” by having their name engraved on the stone plaque, will receive a Certificate of Recognition that their name is part of the Dead Zone Creation and a photograph of the stone. Maximum number of letters per name is twenty. Bottom Liner membership is $50 and sign-up ends September 10, 4:00pm. Bottom Liners do not need to be on the cruise. Cruise seating is twenty dollars, with children under 12 free, accompanied by an adult. Tickets may be had by calling WERU during regular business hours at 469-6600.
All people on board will not only have a boat ride up beautiful Somes Sound, but also be witnesses to the tossing of the plaque into fiord preservation history. The media will be on board to record the event, as will an official representative of the Mount Desert Historical Society to document the historical occasion. The Starfish Enterprise is handicapped accessible, but we need to know in advance. Bottom Liners can sign-up, and tickets are available by calling WERU during regular business hours at 207 469-6600. WERU and the Mount Desert Historical Society are non-profit organizations. Diver Ed has donated his boat for this event and Freshwater Stone of Orland has donated the plaque and engraving. People, groups, and businesses who become Bottom Liners should consider it a sound investment.
Next Boattalk, July 8 10am Eastern time we will be sailing back into history. The Coast Guard recruited over two thousand private vessels at the beginning of World War 2 to patrol offshore looking for German submarines. Lots of good stories will come from this show. Attached is a link to a historic film about some of the boats. The film is 47 minutes long. a.s. nshof.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=314&Itemid=28
It’s coming around again…the Boattalk Semi-dinner Cruise will be voyaging forth on the longest day of the year, June 21, leaving the Northeast Harbor Town Dock at 6PM for a three hour cruise on board the Sea Princess. WERU’s Boattalk guys will be your hosts while we tour several area boatyards, looking at them from the working side, with commentary as we go. We clear off the engine box and turn it into a moveable feast with everyone contributing pot-luck finger food to share. It is BYOB and don’t forget to BYOCamera as we often see eagles, osprey, dolphins, seals and Godzilla while exploring beautiful Somes Sound, the East coast’s only fiord.
Mike Joyce likes to sit with the crowd for some personal conversation while the other Boattalk guy, Alan Sprague takes the microphone forward for nitworthy nautical narration. Thanks again to Sea Princess Cruises for donating the Sea Princess which is fully covered and very stable. Check out their website www.cruiseacadia.com to see the boat designed by our own Giffy Full. Tickets are only $20 per person with children under twelve free. Just call Chris at WERU Community Radio during regular business hours at 207 469-6600 to purchase your tickets. The boat holds 50 people and twenty have already signed-up as of June 5th, so it may sell out early. It’s always fun and a great way to support non-commercial community radio. Hope to see you there. a.s.
Mike is back from his misadventures delivering two old tug boats to Mobile, Alabama…there’ll be some stories about that for sure. We will also be talking with some folks down in Bath who are building a replica of the first ship known to have been built in Maine. Oddly named the “Virginia,” it was of course built before Virginia was a state. Here is a link to their website: Maine’s First Ship a.s.
This month we will be talking about animals and boats. Noah is unavailable, but we will be talking with Peter Muilenberg, author of a “A Sea Dog’s Tale” centered around his family schipperke as they cruise the Atlantic. But that’s not the only tail we’ll have, and you are welcome to add your own. Tune in live Tuesday morning Feb. 11, 10-11am Eastern time to WERU-fm or listen on-line at www.weru.org and call-in 1 866 625-9378. If you don’t know what a schipperke is, here’s a photo, thanks to dogguide.net a.s.
Tuesday Jan. 14, 10am est promises to be interesting. We’ll be talking with our long-time friend Hank Halsted. Living in Newport, RI now, he grew up on boats and has been sailing ever since. He’s been a lot of places and seen a lot of things in a lot of different boats…it’ll be a lot of fun for the whole lot of listeners. Winter in Maine is a good time for sitting around the stove telling and listening to stories and you can join in also. Boattalk is a call-in show and we will be giving the number out during the show. Tune in on the web at www.weru.org or locally at 89.9fm Blue Hill or 99.9 Bangor. If you miss the show and would like to add a story, just contact us at this website and we can make arrangements. Stay warm. a.s.
On Boattalk Tuesday Oct.8, we will be talking with Patrick DiLalla who is the sailing coach with Rockland Community Sailing about getting youth interested in sailing. Giffy Full says he will be there and we will be talking with other people on the phone also. Other topics may include the America’s Cup and the next showing of the Raw Faith movie. It’s a call-in show, so who knows where we may go…always an adventure. www.apprenticeshop.org
When Mike and I were at the 2013 Maine Boats, Homes and Harbors Show in Rockland recently, I talked with the nice folks at Sea Bags. They make totes and more from old sails. They take/trade old sails and dodgers to make them into new sailing gear. I hate the idea of throwing away all that material and am glad to find a way to recycle useful material. They can arrange a pick-up or shipping and help support sailing programs for kids too, so it is a win/win for everyone and the earth also. Check out their website www.seabags.com and save those sails from the dump. a.s.
Mike will be doing some romote reporting on the next Boattalk, Tuesday July 9, 2013. He is helping to deliver the Lewis Story, a replica of a Chebacco Boat which were common work boats made here in New England right after the Revolutionary War. The Story was built by Harold Burnham in Essex, Massachusetts in 1998. Mike is helping to bring her to Somes Sound for the Mt. Desert Historical Society. Looks like the weather is going to be a bit on the rainy side and the Story only has a small deck in the front for protection from the elements. We’ll probably hear about that and more when Mike calls in to Boattalk 10 am 89.9 fm in the Blue Hill area and 99.9 fm Bangor; also streaming on the web at weru.org. Mt. Desert Island Historical Society for a full listing of events including free sails.