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Ocean Planet/USA 05 Update from Bruce Schwab:
Wednesday, March 24, 2004 

Wild WoodenBoat Weekend!

Wild Wooden Weekend on the Wylie Wocket….

What a show! This last weekend was the Maine Wooden Boatbuilder’s Show, here at our winter home, Portland Yacht Service. Around 8,000 people came to see a wonderful display of over 200 exhibitors from Maine’s rich array of boatbuilders, marine goods & services, and newspapers/magazines (like Wooden Boat Magazine!). The amount of boatbuilding talent and history at the show was almost overwhelming but it gave a real feeling of what Maine is all about.

Preparing for the show might have slowed down our boat work for a few days, but it also allowed us to clean and reorganize the shop to be more productive while were at it. Good thing, as there were a lot of visitors to see Ocean Planet and we sold nearly all of our stock of team clothing. More is on order, so don’t worry, you can still get yours!

One of the weekend’s highlights is that I had the honor of showing a shortened version of my slide show/talk at a party held by the Sparkman & Stephens Association and the Cruising Club of America (CCA). In attendance was none other than one of the greatest designers of all time, the legendary Olin Stephens! To shake hands with such an icon was, well, awesome. I was totally nervous but he was so modest and friendly he put me at ease.

My show seemed to be a hit, and I think that many of those there will be coming to my next FULL slide show and storytelling, this Saturday, March 27, 5-7pm, at The Meeting Room at Portland Yacht Service (http://www.portlandyacht.com/).

Thanks to the volunteers over the past couple weeks! A humble bow to Julie Lucchesi, Scott Schmitz, Mike Perkins, Dennis Greenwood, Stepanie Livermore, Bill Shea, Jonathan Wye, Matt Haas, Rich Stevenson, (and anyone I’m forgetting in my rush to get this update out….).

During the show I gave many tours of our boat to sailors of all ages, but the following email from Kurt Rauscher of the Maria Mercedes Foundation reminded me of what Ocean Planet is all about:

“Dear Bruce, Just wanted to thank you for giving us such a wonderful tour on Saturday. After we finished the show we took the four former juvenile offenders that you met to lunch. What they liked best about the entire day was you, your boat and the tour. We plan to use you as an inspirational example to motivate these struggling young people to accomplish something positive with their lives. Thanks and let’s stay in touch. Kurt”

No matter how tired and burned out I get from the lack of sleep, endless scraping for sponsorship and donations, or the work on the boat, to know that it can have this kind of positive effect makes it all worthwhile.

I hope to see you Saturday!

Bruce Schwab, Skipper
USA 05/Ocean Planet


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