Sea Around Us Weekend celebrating the legacy of Rachel Carson in Woods Hole

Celebrating the legacy of environmentalist pioneer Rachel Carson, crowds came out in droves this past weekend in Woods Hole free movie screenings, science in the street for kids, guided bike rides, selfies with a real-life Rachel Carson and most popular of all, the rebirth of the famous “Anything But A Boat” race in Woods Hole’s Great Harbor.

What is “Anything But A Boat” you ask?  An Un-Boat is constructed from anything but that which one might imagine you can make a boat — no paddle boards, no surf boards, no fiberglass  — you get the picture.  Eight intrepid creators entered the race with air mattresses, cardboard, bubble wrap and Styrofoam concoctions on Sunday September 16th at Waterfront Park.

About four hundred people showed up to observe the race which went off at noon led by race manager Shelley Dawicki (from NOAA) and her talented team of volunteers.  “Bamboo Banger” captained by Willie Hatfield with Kelly McKeon finished the race well ahead, winning first prize — a free stay at Woods Hole Inn plus a $100 gift certificate from Black Dog Tavern.

The “Warrier Princess” led by Julie Allen raced to honor a daughter fighting breast cancer and finished with a special award for the “Biggest Heart” of the day.

The “Sons of Carpentry” won “Best Engineered” award with this elaborate, unique paddle boat.  Led by Captain Zachary Grace, the carpenters are employed by the Woods Hole Oceanographic (WHOI) carpentry shop but were quick to share that materials and effort were all their own.  What a great team!

After the awards, viewers wandered over to Luscombe Ave to partake in a block party with free music from Crooked Coast and Brother’s Rye on the shells at both Landfall Restaurant and Quicks Hole Taqueria from 2 – 6 pm.

Beach balls entertained the youngest members of the crowd while beer donated from the Long Trail Brewing Company was sold with proceeds over $800 donated to Falmouth Water Stewards, a local non profit working on water quality issues in Falmouth.  The event was produced by the Woods Hole Business Association in collaboration with the science community.

Rooster and Maryanne Fricke of Nobska Farm hot sauce fame danced up a storm, and many party-goers dreamed of a day when we might shut the whole block down for this sort of end-of-summer fun.  Maybe next year!!

To close, please enjoy this video of local phenom musician Ben Patterson with his band Brother’s Rye.  This photo essay is brought to you by Woods Hole Inn.  You will not regret a decision to come visit us in Woods Hole one of these late summer days.