So far this summer nearly 5,000 young people and their families have set sail on free Tall Ships Cruises and free day trips to the Boston Harbor Islands as part of Save the Harbor/Save the Bay’s free All Access Boston Harbor program, including 30 kids from Lynn.
This free program, which provides free access to the Boston Harbor Islands to more than 100 area youth and community groups, features environmental exploration, historic sea chanteys and art on the shore, as well as fishing, crabbing, swimming, and storytelling by the sea.
“Save the Harbor’s free Youth Environmental Education Programs are the cornerstone of our work to ‘Share the Harbor’ with young people and their families and create a new generation of environmental stewards,” said Save the Harbor’s Vice President of Operations and Programs Chris Mancini. “This season, we expect to serve 30,000 youth and teens ages 7-17 at eight program sites, on 28 free island excursions and at 20 free beach events from Nahant to Nantasket.”
All Access trip begin at the Blue Hills Bank Pavilion, where the group learns the history of Boston Harbor and the Harbor cleanup with an interactive presentation from Save the Harbor’s Maritime Historian David Coffin. Save the Harbor/Save the Bay’s summer youth staff of teachers, college assistants and high school students then bring the kids aboard Bay State Cruise Company’s Provincetown II to set sail to the Harbor Islands where each group enjoys a picnic lunch before exploring the island.
“What a great way to spend a summer day,” said Save the Harbor’s spokesman Bruce Berman. “We believe that every child and family deserves the opportunity to enjoy these spectacular urban natural resources, and are doing our best to make it happen.”
The Boston Harbor Islands are important educational and recreational resources for youth development and community groups from around the region. On Spectacle Island, Save the Harbor’s educators teach kids to fish for flounder, skates and the occasional striped bass from the pier, and help them explore the shore looking for sea glass and historic artifacts from Spectacle’s “Treasure Beach.”
On Georges Island, youth and teens explore the maze of passageways at Fort Warren, a historic landmark used for coastal defense during the Civil War, where they may even catch a glimpse of the famous ghost of the “Lady in Black.” The docks on the island offer fantastic fishing spots while the parade ground is a great space for sports and games.
“At Save the Harbor/Save the Bay we are particularly proud to serve as the BostonHarbor Connection for a generation of young people,” said Save the Harbor/Save the Bay President, Patricia Foley. “The best way we know to “save the harbor” is to share it with the region’s kids and families.” Save the Harbor/Save the Bay’s free youth and beach programs have introduced more than 160,000 young people to Boston Harbor and the Islands since they began in 2002.
Save the Harbor’s free youth environmental education and family programs are made possible with leadership grants from Bay State Cruise Company, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, The Boston Foundation, The Coca-Cola Foundation, Distrigas/ENGIE.
Save the Harbor is grateful for Partnership Grants from Forrest Berkley and Marcie Tyre Berkley, The Clowes Fund, Comcast, Eastern Salt Company, Inc., Fan Pier – The Fallon Company, John Hancock Financial Services Inc., Kershaw Foundation – Cheers for Children, Llewellyn Foundation, Mass Environmental Trust, Mass Humanities, Massachusetts Bay Lines, Massachusetts Port Authority, Massachusetts Water Resources Authority, P&G Gillette, William E. and Bertha E. Schrafft Charitable Trust, Vertex, Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation, The Yawkey Foundation.
Save the Harbor also appreciates funding support from Arbella Insurance Group Charitable Foundation, Blue Hills Bank Foundation, Blue Hills Bank Pavilion, BOMA, Boston Properties – Atlantic Wharf, Camp Harbor View Foundation, Clipper Ship, Foundation, Inc., The Daily Catch Seaport, Elizabeth Elser Doolittle Charitable Trust, Emera Inc., Paul & Phyllis Fireman Charitable Foundation, Thomas & Lucinda Foley, The HYM Investment Group, LLC, Lovett-Woodsum Foundation, Massachusetts Convention Center Authority, National Grid Foundation, The Reebok Foundation, RMR Real Estate Services, Lawrence J. & Anne Rubenstein Foundation, Skanska, South Boston Community Development Foundation, Spectra Energy, Tishman Speyer.
Save the Harbor would also like to thank our supporters 3A Marine Service, AP Staffing, Andus Baker & Rowan Murphy Family Fund, Bay State Federal Savings Charitable Foundation, Andrew J. Calamare & Marianne Connolly, Circle Furniture, The Fuller Foundation, Inc., Legal Sea Foods, Miss Wallace M. Leonard Foundation, Sherry & Alan Leventhal Family Foundation, George Lewis – Haven Trust, Liberty Bay Credit Union, Mass Bay Credit Union, National Park Service, Nicholson Foundation, Randy Peeler & Kate Kellogg, Red Sox Foundation, Rockland Trust Charitable Foundation, Storm Duds, Matthew J. & Gilda F. Strazzula Foundation, TD Bank Charitable Foundation, UDR, Kyle & Sara Warwick, Matthew Whitlock & Penny & Neal.
Special thanks to the hundreds of individual donors and to our partners at the Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Metropolitan Beaches Commission, the Boston Centers for Youth and Families and the YMCA of Greater Boston for their support.
Save the Harbor/Save the Bay is a non-profit public-interest environmental advocacy organization for Boston Harbor, whose mission is to restore and protect BostonHarbor, the Boston Harbor Islands, our region’s beaches and the marine environment and share them with the public for everyone to enjoy.
For more information about Save the Harbor/Save the Bay, visit their website at www.savetheharbor.org, their blog Sea, Sand & Sky atwww.blog.savetheharbor.org or follow savetheharbor on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.