On May 15, nearly thirty Girl Scouts boarded the schooner Adirondack II for an educational sailing program designed to expose a new generation of women to tall ship sailing and Rhode Island’s maritime history and heritage. Scouts participated in a 3-hour sail where they engaged in seamanship activities and learned about Rhode Island’s Revolutionary history, including the French Navy’s arrival in Newport and the 1st Rhode Island Regiment, a military unit comprised in part of newly emancipated African Heritage and Indigenous men. The historical curriculum was compiled and delivered by Tall Ships America intern Brooke Grasberger, a PhD candidate at Brown University. Adirondack II’s team of Captain Elise, Aria, and Cassie enthusiastically taught the Scouts how to raise sails, handle lines, and shared their knowledge of maritime safety and navigation fundamentals. This partnership between Tall Ships America and Girl Scouts of Southeastern New England was funded by a grant from Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route and a donation from Adirondack II operator Rick Scarano.
This event is a prelude to the multi-year Women on the Water program, funded by the National Park Service. Women on the Water is a partnership between Tall Ships America, Girl Scouts of Southeastern New England, and the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route. The program will offer shoreside and shipboard instruction for Mariner Scouts in seamanship skills, maritime history, environmental stewardship, and maritime career pathways and opportunities. Tall Ships America thanks Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route Trail Administrator Johnny Carawan and Girl Scouts of Southeastern New England Senior Manager of Girl Experience Cassie Audette Ezzell for their work on this project.