Tag Archives: sailing

Rich Wilson recounts near disaster in the Vendée Globe Race

Rich Wilson

Famed circumnavigator Rich Wilson will give an illustrated talk titled Race France to France, Leave Antarctica to Starboard: An American in the Vendee Globe on Thursday, April 19 at 7:30 p.m., Cook Memorial Theater, New Bedford Whaling Museum. A reception at 6:30 p.m. in the Jacobs Family Gallery precedes the lecture.

Wilson finished ninth in the world renowned Vendée Globe 2008-9 – the solo, non-stop, sailing race around the world.

The Vendée Globe race instructions are simple: “start at Les Sables d’Olonne (France), leave Cape of Good Hope (South Africa) to port, leave Cape Leeuwin (Australia) to port, leave Cape Horn (Chile) to port, leave Antarctica to starboard, finish at Les Sables d’Olonne; 26,000 miles, 100 days, solo, nonstop, without assistance, in 60’ sailboats.”

It wasn’t so simple. Wilson endured broken ribs, a facial gash, compressed vertebrae, hurricane force gales, an ascent up the 90’ mast, crushing fatigue, fear, and gear breakage in braving the course via the Atlantic, Indian and PacificOceans, Cape of Good Hope and Cape Horn, in his 60’ mono hull Great American III. A dedicated educator, Wilson connected his voyage to 250,000 students and 7 million readers by publication of a 15-part weekly series (written aboard ship) in 50 U.S. Newspapers, and by his website, www.sitesalive.com. Schools in 15 countries participated online.

Admission: $15 members; $20 non-members. For tickets, call (508) 997-0046 Ext. 100.

The 2012 Speakers’ Series is presented by BayCoast Bank, and sponsored in part by C.E. Beckman, and Hampton Inn Fairhaven/New Bedford.

The 2010 Sailors’ Series launches with John Bullard’s “Two Voyages North”

This year’s series of four lectures begins 7:30 tonight, February 23rd, in the Museum Theater with former New Bedford Mayor, John Bullard, presenting “Two Voyages North”.

President of the Sea Education Association (SEA), John Bullard has sailed and raced extensively. In 2007 he sailed on SEA’s research vessel, Corwith Cramer, from Bermuda north to Nova Scotia and then joined Ned Cabot’s Ceilita for a trip from the Shetland Islands to Svalbard, passing north of 80° latitude. John will focus his discussion on these two voyages and will share his experiences of climate change, remote places, science, and adventure through engaging stories and striking photography.

John Bullard sailing north of 80 degrees on Cielita, photo by Dr. Charles Welch

The Sailor Series Continues:

March 23: “The Azores: From Whaler’s Refuge to Sailor’s Destination,” with Victor Pinheiro

April 20: “Weathering Cape Horn: An East-to-West Passage Under Sail,” with Dr. Ned Cabot

May 25: “Following the Waters: Voices from the Final Norwegian Emigration, with Astrid Tollefsen

All lectures start at 7:30 p.m. in the Museum Theater. A reception at 6:30 p.m. is held in the Jacobs Family Gallery prior to each lecture. Admission for the series is $50 for members, $75 for non-members. For individual lectures: $15 for members, $20 for non-members. To reserve tickets, please call 508-997-0046 ext. 100.

Inagural Cuttyhunk “Cruise-in-Company”

Last Thursday, the Museum along with some help from Vintage Yacht Club and Henry Wheelright of UBS, hosted an inaugural “Cruise-in-Company” to the beautiful island of Cuttyhunk. Around 60 people joined the fleet which originated out of New Bedford Harbor on a perfect summer day. (Which I think all these boaters deserved after a summer of mostly heavy rain and muggy weather!)


Cuttyhunk Island has deep ties to not only to the history of the United States, but also the New Bedford Whaling Museum. In short, in 1602, the English colonist Bartholomew Gosnold arrived at Cuttyhunk Island, explored what is now Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard, and New Bedford, and then sailed off to settle in the Jamestown Colony of Virginia. 300 years later, a monument in his honor was erected on the island, and ownership was given to a newly established organization known as the Old Dartmouth Historical Society. The monument itself stands in an extremely inaccessible part of the island, but that didn’t keep our group from celebrating its existence with a leisurely trip to visit the island that holds the first accessioned piece of our collection.


more text and photos, click link below…

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