Sea-Fever blog


Pirate of Philadelphia by Peter A. Mello
May 21, 2007, 9:55 pm
Filed under: maritime heritage

Today’s Philadelphia Inquirer reports that John S. Carter, former president of the Independence Maritime Museum will plead guilty of “scamming” the museum of over $1.5 million “to fund a lavish lifestyle.” 

Is it me of does anyone else wonder where the other employees and board members were doing and thinking when this was going on?

I previously wrote about this here, here and here.

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Maritime Icon Burns by Peter A. Mello
May 21, 2007, 6:37 am
Filed under: maritime heritage, tall ships

The Cutty Sark, one of the world’s most famous ships, suffered significant damage in a fire while it was in drydock undergoing restortation.

I have always enjoyed visiting the Cutty Sark at the National Maritime Museum and Royal Observatory in Greenwich, England. More than just a ship, she was a national and international icon. She is known to millions around the world and she has educated countless vistors over her many years as museum ship. She is truly one of the most popular ambassador’s of maritme heritage and culture. She represents commerce and adventure at sea.

Early reports say there are suspicous origins to the fire but ship officials beleive that she will be able to be restored to her role as a martime museum.

Here is a link with several videos.

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The Art and Practice of Leadership Development by Peter A. Mello
May 18, 2007, 11:08 pm
Filed under: Education, Leadership

Starting today I am participating in a week log executive education program at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government called The Art and Practice of Leadership Development. This is the final component of my Rhode Island Foundation Fellowship. My previous experiences included The Leadership Journey – Creating and Developing Your Leadership at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, the Executive Seminar at the Aspen Institute and a chance to travel to England to meet with management “guru” Charles Handy to discuss leadership.  From the first afternoon and evening, I can tell that this program will be a great finale to amazing 18 months that were made possible by the Rhode Island Foundation.

After I get through this program I will begin writing what I learned from these incredible experiences as well as what I hope to do with all of this exciting, new knowledge.

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Book Review – Fifty Places to Sail Before You Die by Peter A. Mello
May 17, 2007, 8:25 am
Filed under: Book review, Experience, storytelling

If you are a sailor or dream about sailing, this is the book for you!

Fifty Places to Sail Before You Die – Sailing Experts Share the World’s Greatest Destinations is the third volume by author Chris Santella on some of our favorite pastimes. His first, Fifty Places to Flyfish Before You Die, was born from a personal passion. It was a great hit and soon spawned Fifty Places to Golf Before You Die which is a must-read and fun check list of some of the world’s most spectacular golf courses. His next logical subject was sailing. Continue reading



Rhode Island’s State Flagship looking for crew for the summer and beyond by Peter A. Mello
May 15, 2007, 8:48 am
Filed under: Experiential education, Nonprofit, sail training, tall ships, work

Providence Maritime Heritage Foundation based in Providence, RI, operates the Continental Sloop Providence and is seeking crew for the 2007 sailing season, which will include tall ship events in Newport, RI and Halifax, Nova Scotia and beyond.

The Continental Sloop Providence is an historic 110′ tall ship engaged primarily in sail training and educational programming. Built in 1976, this reproduction of a Revolutionary War-era ship participates in educational programs for youth, sail training, re-enactments, corporate charters, and team-building programs throughout New England. The Providence carries a minimum crew of four professionals plus the captain and up to 49 passengers. Continue reading



Spirit of Bermuda Video by Peter A. Mello
May 14, 2007, 10:35 pm
Filed under: Experiential education, sail training, tall ships

Narration by Captain Chris Blake about the new Bermuda sloop Spirit of Bermuda.

For more info, check out www.bermudasloop.org

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NY Times – Ocean Blues by Peter A. Mello
May 13, 2007, 1:20 pm
Filed under: Environment, Oceans

photo by Wayne Levin - NY Times 05 13 07

The Way We Live Now essay by Paul Greenberg in the May 13, 2007 Sunday New York Times Magazine – Ocean Blues: America’s once bountiful seafood supply has been decimated. Can the president say kapu?

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Drama on the High Seas by Peter A. Mello
May 8, 2007, 10:03 pm
Filed under: Experience, life, new media, storytelling

Schooner Anne after 05 05 07 collision I previously posted about the 1000 Days at Sea Project that is currently being undertaken by Reid Stowe and Soanya Ahmed on the Schooner Anne.

On Sunday, May 5, 2007, just 15 days into the adventure Schooner Anne was struck be a passing freighter in the middle of the night. Luckily for Reid and Soanya it was a glancing blow that did not threaten the integrity of the hull. Unfortunately it seems to have taken out the jib boom and forestays and made quite a mess of the rig.

The 1000 Days at Sea Project is doing a great job of using modern technology and new media tools to keep us informed. For an inside look at what transpired on Sunday night here are some very interesting audio recordings. The first is a recorded telephone call from the shore support team to the US Coast Guard reporting the incident.

The next is a radio transmission from the Schooner Anne during which Reid recounts what happened and how he intends to deal with it.

Without getting into the merits or sanity of this endeavour, it’s fascinating that modern technology gives us the opportunity to experience things from the safety of homes or offices. With 984 days remaining in the 1000 Days at Sea, it will be interesting to see how Reid, Soanya and Schooner Anne recover from this! Stay tuned!

Photo and audio from the 1000 Days at Sea website.

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Pirates on the Media Horizon! by Peter A. Mello
May 4, 2007, 4:55 pm
Filed under: maritime heritage, new media, reality tv, tall ships

International Talk Like a Pirate Day may not be until September 19th; however, there are pirates on the media horizon.

On Friday May 26th the hugely popular Pirates of the Caribbean series lands with its 3rd installment, At World’s End.

A week later, more at sea reality TV will be launching on CBS with a new Mark Burnett series called Pirate Master.

Both of these shows have great websites to explore. Pirate Master has set up a wiki which will allow show fans and pirate enthusiasts to create their own content for the website. This will be fun to follow.

Several of the tall ships that star in these shows (Continental Sloop Providence, HMS Bounty and the Barque Picton Castle) will be participating in the American Sail Training Association’s TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE Series this summer on the Atlantic Coast of North America.

If the pirate’s life’s for you, there are plenty of opportunities to hop aboard and sail into the sunset.

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The Privilege of Sailing by Peter A. Mello

(Cross posted in The Tabor Boy Project and the Sea-Fever blog)

Those of us who have sailed on the SSV Tabor Boy are, by nearly anyone’s measure, “privileged.” We were privileged to have been given an opportunity to participate in a unique life changing experience and we took advantage of it. Most of us were also privileged in that we grew up in middle or upper middle class families that could afford to send us to Tabor Academy, a school that offers an incredible education and so many other valuable life forming experiences.

That sailing is often equated with privilege is unfortunate because young people from every socioeconomic background can benefit from participating in the sport. In fact, an effective argument can be made that those less “privileged” would have the most to gain from the experience.

There are few activities that teach young people so many important lessons about life the way sailing does: cause and effect, problem-solving, math and science, teamwork, sportsmanship, respect and much more. Participation in a sail training program elevates many of the social characteristics of sailing and creates a very effective platform for learning about leadership in the process.

In last month’s Cruising World magazine, Kitty Martin wrote a great article about a school approximately 200 miles away from Marion and a much greater distance divide in so many other respects. However, the common thread between the 2 schools is their strong connection to the sea and the incredible power that it has to change young lives. Continue reading




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