Thursday, May 10, 2012

Harraseeket Heritage Day and Harborside Gala To benefit the Freeport Historical Society

Freeport Historical Society | 45 Main Street | Freeport, ME 04032
FREEPORT, Maine, May 7, 2012 – The Freeport Historical Society will be host to an exciting day and evening on the waterfront in South Freeport on June 23.  Families and individuals are invited to come down to Brewer South Freeport Marine for a lively public celebration of Freeport’s maritime past, including viewing, touring or sailing aboard the historic schooner Bowdoin; trying their hand at knot-tying and oar-making with the Compass Project; enjoying maritime shanties and jigs; and more. 

In the evening, the Freeport Historical Society will stage a fabulous Harborside Gala, also at Brewer South Freeport Marine, with entertainment by the Jason Spooner Trio, light food and beverages, and both silent and live auction as well as Giving Tree.  All events will benefit the Freeport Historical Society and their public programs and two historic properties.

Celebrating the maritime history of Freeport, the schooner Bowdoin will be at the dock at Brewer South Freeport Marine for viewing, deck tours and sailing adventures.  The Bowdoin, built in East Boothbay in 1921, has deep ties to Freeport.  She was captained by Admiral Donald MacMillan, known far and wide for his Arctic explorations, which led him to receive the prestigious Hubbard Gold Medal from the National Geographic Society in 1953. 

The Bowdoin is today owned by the Maine Maritime Academy and is designated Maine’s official state vessel. Her mission is to provide sail training for the Maine Maritime Academy students and the public as well as to aid in recruiting and community relations, making her inclusion in the inaugural Harraseeket Heritage Day on behalf of the Freeport Historical Society a natural fit.

Also on hand at Brewer South Freeport Marine providing oar-making demonstrations will be the Compass Project, which uses boatbuilding and rowing to provide positive direction to youth by encouraging the development of personal responsibility and community and environmental engagement.  In addition, Maine Maritime Academy students acting as crew members on the Bowdoin will be demonstrating their skills at knot-making and splicing, while local artist of the Freeport-based Frost Gully Violins will be performing traditional maritime shanties. Finally, Mary Cowan will do a reading from her award-winning children’s book, Captain Mac: The Life of Donald Baxter MacMillan, Arctic Explorer, and will be available for book signings.

Funds for the Freeport Historical Society will be raised through ticket sales for dock access to tour the schooner Bowdoin as well as sailing adventures and for the Harborside Gala, and all proceeds from the auction hosted in the evening will go to the Freeport Historical Society. Harraseeket Heritage Day events and the Harborside Gala are open to the public, and advance tickets are available for purchase.  Following the Harraseeket Heritage Day and Harborside Gala on June 23, the Freeport Historical Society will host its Third Annual Vintage Baseball Game at historic Pettengill Farm, Sunday, June 24 at 1:00 pm.

Harraseeket Heritage Day events will be held from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm at Brewer South Freeport Marine. Deck tours of the schooner Bowdoin will be held from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, with suggested donations of $5 per person or $20 per family.  Two-hour sailing adventures will depart at 12:30 pm and 3:30 pm, with a limited supply of tickets for $30 per person available in advance.  Children under 13 must be accompanied by a parent and must provide their own PFDs.  The Harborside Gala will begin at 6:30 pm, with the auction ending at 8:00 pm and the Jason Spooner Trio performing live music.  Tickets will be $40, including light hors d’oeuvres and beverages for purchase.  Tickets are available at the Freeport Historical Society, in person (45 Main Street, Freeport) or online at, or at Brewer South Freeport Marine. 

Harraseeket Heritage Day and Harborside Gala are sponsored by L.L.Bean, The Doolan/Dougherty Group at Morgan Stanley, Brewer South Freeport Marine, Bob Knecht/Town & Shore, Mary K. Noyes/entrepreneur, Harraseeket Lunch & Lobster, Curtis Thaxter Attorneys at Law, and Seabags.

Established in 1969, the Freeport Historical Society is a non-profit with a mission of collecting, teaching, preserving and sharing the history of Freeport, Maine.  FHS’s website is