Young boatbuilders celebrate the summer of hard work by rowing and sailing their creations in Cranberry Harbor. FILE PHOTO

Boatworks will mark 10th with row-a-thon

CRANBERRY ISLES — Every summer, the crew at the Islesford Boatworks (IB) community boatbuilding program throws a pirate-themed party at Little Cranberry Island’s Sand Beach in early August to celebrate the launch of a new boat. The party usually includes rowing and sailing many of the boats from previous summers.

This year, to celebrate the organization’s 10th anniversary, they decided to expand on the idea of the IB flotilla often seen at those parties. A “10 for 10 Row-a-thon,” a ten-kilometer route around the island Sunday, Aug. 2, is set to raise $10,000 to support the program.

“The group is set to leave Sand Beach at 1 p.m., travel around the island counterclockwise, stopping about halfway at Bunker’s Cove for a break, and then continue on the rest of the way, returning to Sand Beach by around 4 p.m.,” IB Executive Director Tony Archino said. “There will be three powerboats on hand to ensure safety.”

Archino will be paddling Seafox, the boat he built with the group in 2013, his first summer with IB.

Participants are collecting sponsors for their row, with a goal of $250 each. Some are rowing in teams, as a relay, or raising money but sending a “pinch rower” in their stead.

This year’s launch party is set for the following Sunday, Aug. 9.

The boat building school includes programs for children ages 7 to 12; teens and adults. All are guided by experienced adult staff and teen counselors to produce a dinghy every summer. Attendance has grown to over 100 for the 7-week course.


Liz Graves

Liz Graves

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Former Islander reporter and editor Liz Graves grew up in California and came to Maine as a schooner sailor.

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