Surfers Help Clean the Waves They Ride
Surfing fanatics are known for their laser-focused ambition to ride the next wave, and now in turn, an ambitious new program is helping them to keep those waves free of plastic waste and other pollutants—and empowering surfers to be their own environmentalists.
In a partnership between Hawaii-based Kona Brewing Co. and a California nonprofit group called the Save The Waves Coalition, the “Catch a Clean Wave” program kicked off in July, featuring a 10-day, 1,200-mile traveling tour of the West Coast’s top 15 surfing spots to promote beach clean-up efforts. Beginning here in Washington on July 13 at a La Push beach, the tour continued south, ending in San Diego on July 22, picking up buckets full of discarded waste. Headlining the tour was professional surfer Anna Gudauskas (née Ehrgott) and noted surfing photographer Sarah Lee. At each stop, Gudauskas would surf the waves and afterwards they would take part in local community beach clean-ups.
Kona Brewing also cited a report by the Natural Resources Defense Council, which estimated that 80% of marine litter comes from land-based pollution, such plastic shopping bags and water bottles, aluminum soda cans, glass bottles, drinking straws, and cigarette butts. To help raise awareness of this problem and mitigate the effects, Kona Brewing donated $50,000 to the Save The Waves Coalition.
To continue the environmental efforts beyond the tour, the nonprofit also launched a Save The Waves app (savethewaves.org/app) in June, which relies on the power of crowdsourcing from surfers and other beachgoers. App users are encouraged to report locations of coastal debris, take photos of it, and tag the location using GPS, so it can be tracked and disposed of properly.
“It’s a fun way to spotlight the popularity of surfing across the globe, as well as highlight the important need to keep our oceans clean,” said Vanessa Parker, brand manager for Kona Brewing. “We hope everyone, regardless of where they live, will be reminded that we need to be active participants in ocean conservation, and what better place to start than in your own backyard.”
For more information on the Save the Waves coalition, visit: savethewaves.org.
All-New Maritime High School Opens this Month
A year after COVID-19 turned the Seattle-area’s school systems upside down, Highline Public Schools is making another, much more positive change this month with the debut of Maritime High School, which focuses on educating students interested in the region’s bustling maritime industry.
For now, the new high school will be based at an interim site in Des Moines until a permanent site is determined, but the inaugural class of 9th graders is set to begin here in September. The district said this summer that it planned to enroll up to 44 students this year through an admissions lottery. “In a region that is a hub for the maritime industry, it is so important that we give students an opportunity to prepare for the good jobs and meaningful careers this field has to offer,” said Highline Superintendent Susan Enfield.
Classes at the school will focus on a range of skills needed to succeed in the maritime industry, such as familiarity with boat navigation, ship design, world trade, commercial fishing, and ocean sciences. Students in 11th and 12th grades will have access to internships that can provide hands-on experience and good workforce skills. The school will also prepare students for continuing their maritime education at two- and four-year colleges.
The Port Townsend-based Northwest Maritime Center—which is partnering on the Maritime High School project, along with the Port of Seattle and the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition—also offers a two-week program for 7th-graders that teaches water and seamanship skills and half-day maritime programs for juniors and seniors to earn additional credits, plus other customized programs for school groups across the region.
“It’s hands-on, real-world education tied to maritime employment and the marine environment,” explains Jake Beattie, executive director of the Northwest Maritime Center. “This is powerful learning—learning that ignites curiosity in students.”
According to a 2020 report published by the Port of Seattle and other school supporters, the Washington’s maritime industry is growing at about 6.4% a year but has an average workforce age of 54. Projects like the Maritime High School, the study found, could help create a career pipeline for a successful industry facing a potential wave of retirements in the near future.
Eighth-grade students interested in attending in the 2022-23 school year will have an opportunity to apply in January. (Fifty-one percent of seats are reserved for students who live within the boundaries of Highline Public Schools; the rest are available to out-of-district students.) For more information on enrollment and the program, visit: maritime.highlineschools.org.
Second Annual Adventuress Cup to be held September 18th
On Saturday, September 18, local nonprofit Sound Experience invites racers to raise the sails and some funds, during its second annual Adventuress Cup – A Race for the Salish Sea. The event for sailboats and powerboats will be held in the waters of Shilshole Bay and will kick off with a festive boat parade.
The race itself aims to raise critical funds for Sound Experience, which owns and operates the iconic tall ship Adventuress. Monies raised will help support youth education aboard the Adventuress, including the popular Girls at the Helm program as well as two new initiatives: Everett at Sea and Duwamish at Sea. These recently launched programs, in partnership with local organizations, introduce underserved teens to the marine environment. Sound Experience programs teach seamanship, environmental awareness and stewardship, and give young people on-the-water opportunities that help them grow and thrive.
“At Sound Experience, we believe that we are all shipmates,” shares Catherine Collins, Executive Director. “The one thing we hear most from kids at the end of a program is, ‘I would never have been friends with [her/him/them] if we hadn’t sailed together.’”
Race participants for the Cup can join the fun on the water or virtually, and crew members are encouraged to participate in peer-to-peer fundraising and environmental/education pre-race challenges to improve their boat’s handicap (or score). All activities will follow safety guidelines and procedures and will not include land-based events. To learn more, or to register your vessel in the race, visit: soundexp.org/AdventuressCup.
Elliott Bay Marina Purchased by Florida Group
A Florida-based operator of marine properties has purchased Seattle’s Elliott Bay Marina for a reported price of $80.5 million. As of July 16, Southern Marinas Holdings II, LLC, began operations as the new owners of one of the largest private marinas on the West Coast.
Located at the edge of Seattle’s Magnolia neighborhood, Elliott Bay Marina has more than 1,200 water slips for vessels up to 300 feet in length and 10 miles of moorage. The full-service marina also includes repair facilities, a fuel dock, a convenience store, a Freedom Boat Club, and several retail vendors. It is also home to two popular Landry’s restaurants: Palisade and Maggie Bluffs.
In a letter to Elliott Bay’s current members, marina principal John Kaiser thanked them for their loyal support of the “one of a kind” marina community for the past 30 years. “My partners and I have been most fortunate to see our vision for Elliott Bay Marina come to fruition,” he said. “But the timing is right for our ownership group to transition the marina to a team whose principal focus is both marina and resort operations. We have found such a group in Southern Marinas.”
Gary Rosmarin, principal of Southern Marinas, assured marina patrons that they “will continue to see the same familiar, friendly faces you have come to know over the years.”
Info for Elliott Bay Marina can be found at: elliottbaymarina.co.
Marine Servicenter Wins Third-Straight Jeanneau Dealer of the Year Award
For the third straight year, Seattle’s Marine Servicenter has been named the North American Jeanneau Sailboat Dealer of the Year. This was also the fourth time Marine Servicenter has earned this title in the past six years.
The 2021 award was presented on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay during the first in-person Jeanneau Dealer Meeting in more than two years. The Dealer of the Year award is presented to one of 22 Jeanneau dealerships in North America, based on customer satisfaction, after-sales service, annual sales volume, and top owners’ events and support.
Dan Krier, vice president of Marine Servicenter, thanked the entire staff and its vendors in the Pacific Northwest, whom he credited with the honor. “And to all of our Jeanneau owners, thank you for buying boats with us and putting your trust in us,” he added.
For more on Marine Servicenter, visit: marinesc.com.
Drink Up at this Floating Lemonade Stand Operated by Two Seattle Sisters
It’s a boat…it’s a pontoon…wait, it’s a floating lemonade shop! One of the sweetest additions to the Lake Union scene this summer was the new Quinn & Kate’s Lemonade,owned and operated by a pair of Seattle school-age siblings. With a little help from dad, Quinn Carner, 8, and sister Kate, 11, Carner launched their business in May, selling icy glasses of homemade lemonade and other frosty treats to kayakers, paddlers, and boaters on the lake from their roaming stand. Adorned with artificial grass, a petite picnic table, and a farmhouse-inspired hut stocked with supplies, it can be steered via a Bluetooth-operated motor driven by their father, Nate Carner, from a nearby kayak or the family’s houseboat.
Lemonades sell for $3 each and the girls are donating a third of their profits to a charity of their choosing, in this case Rainier Animal Fund; they also received a microloan to start their stand, and are now paying that forward by donating microloan funds to other women-owned and -operated businesses around the world. The budding entrepreneurs plan to continue selling lemonade during the month of September, and post each day’s lake location on their Instagram feed, @lemonsforgood. Keep a weather eye out, perhaps some cash stashed in your back pocket (although they do accept Venmo and ApplePay), and snag a feel-good glass for yourself. For more details on both the stand and the sisters, go to: lemonsforgood.com.