Thursday, May 30, 2013

Sign Up Now for ISEA Summer Sailing Programs

Summer programs for students, adults and families are now available for sign-up.  The complete listing is available by clicking here. 

Astronomy Sail

Making the Great Lakes Great Sail (Free!)

Family Science Sail

Dinner is served on the Maritime History Sail

Captain & Daughter on Young Women in Science Sail

Underway on Little Traverse Bay last year

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Misty Morning Departure

Students from Tappen Middle School in Ann Arbor got a moist start to their Schoolship trip this morning.  Later the fog lifted and the sky brightened.
-T. K.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Gull Behavior Topic of Thursday's Great Lakes Seminar

On Thursday May 30th at 7pm, the Inland Seas Education Association will host a screening of the movie Signals for Survival, an in-depth study of behavior and communication of the lesser great blacked-backed and herring gulls. The viewing will be followed by a Q&A session with Dr. Bill Scharf, a local ornithologist. This seminar is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

Dr. Scharf has dedicated most of his career to the study of herring gulls. For over 30 years he has examined trends and noted abnormalities of gulls on Gull Island in Grand Traverse Bay. His research has helped the Leelanau Conservancy, who owns Gull Island, write a management plan that protects the island as it is home to thousands of herring gulls that nest there from April through June. Inland Seas will host a sail to Gull Island on Sunday, June 2nd, as part of the Leelanau Peninsula Bird Festival.

Dr. Bill Scharf aboard the Schoolship at Gull Island
You can accompany Dr. Scharf and educators from the Leelanau Peninsula Bird Festival, Leelanau Conservancy and Inland Seas on a trip to Gull Island on Sunday, June 2nd.  Click here for more infomation.

--Tom Kelly

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

ISEA's Executive Director Announces Planned Retirement

April 24, 2013

Change of Watch at ISEA

It has been almost 25 years since the first Schoolship students stepped aboard Malabar on a May morning in 1989. Since that time there has been a lot of water under the keels of our various Schoolships vessels (Malabar, Cygnet, Falcon, Manitou, Westward, Mishe Mokwa, Liberty, and Inland Seas), many dedicated staff members, a thousand + volunteers, and many loyal financial supporters. This has been a wonderful period of my life, to see a dream come true and to have new dreams unfold as all of us worked together to bring the Schoolship experience to over 94,000 students, young and old.
Aboard Malabar, 1989
As I approach my 65th birthday, it is time to turn over the helm of Inland Seas Education Association to a new leader. Since 2008, I have been working toward this with the ISEA Board of Directors, and assistance from NorthSky Nonprofit Network. ISEA has developed an Executive Transition Plan, a pathway for the orderly change of leadership. In the coming months we will be searching for the next Executive Director and hopefully this person will be ready to join us by November, 2013. After a couple of months overlap, I will step aside and the new leader will take the helm beginning January 2014.

ISEA will go on much as before. The board is committed to our mission and the way of doing our work. The new Executive Director will be carefully chosen by the board to carry on the best traditions of ISEA and to bring new ideas and new energy to the organization. I will help in any way I can to insure a sustainable future for ISEA. I plan continued involvement with ship operations in the future, working with Captain Ben Hale, to provide a safe and rewarding shipboard experience for our young learners.

I want to thank you for your loyal support over the years, and I ask for your support through this transition period and into the future. This will be a change for everyone involved with Inland Seas, including me and you. Please feel free to contact me if you would like to talk about the transition or anything else about ISEA. I trust you will continue to support ISEA’s mission into the future, so thousands more students can experience the Great Lakes and become faithful stewards of this great resource.

Best regards,

Tom Kelly
Executive Director

Click here to see the Position Posting

Friday, May 10, 2013

MHA to Host Talk on Last Sail-Powered Whaling Ship in the World

On June 5, 2013, Maritime Heritage Alliance will welcome Matthew Stackpole, who will speak on the past, present, and future of the Charles W. Morgan, the oldest U.S. commercial sailing ship and the last sail-driven whaling ship in the world.

The Charles W. Morgan was built in 1841 in New Bedford, MA and has been in Mystic Seaport, CT since 1941, following an 80-year whaling career. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1966.

Matthew Stackpole, a Nantucket native, is the whaling ship’s historian for the massive restoration project
that will culminate in the re-launching of the vessel at Mystic Seaport on July 21, 2013. An accomplished
sailor, Stackpole spent time as a rigger, a first mate on the schooner Shenandoah, and a charter schooner
owner and captain of the Concordia-built schooner Mya. He is a former Executive Director of the Martha’s
Vineyard Museum.

Maritime Heritage Alliance is proud to be part of the collaborative efforts to restore the historic vessel to
seaworthy condition. MHA’s volunteer shipwrights are constructing the spars that will be installed on a
whaleboat that is being built at the Great Lakes Boat Building School in Cedarville, MI. Oars for the boat
are being constructed by the Michigan Maritime Museum Traditional Small Craft Association in South
Haven, MI.

Sailors and history buffs alike will enjoy Stackpole’s presentation, which will include a slide presentation
detailing the Charles W. Morgan restoration project.

A reception for Matthew Stackpole and his wife, Martha, will immediately follow the presentation, and
refreshments of a seafaring nature will be served. Tours of the Maritime Heritage Alliance facilities at the
Great Lakes Discovery Campus, 13268 West Bayshore Drive, Traverse City and MHA boats, including the schooner Madeline, will be available.

Reservations are required, due to limited seating. Please call the Maritime Heritage Alliance at 231-946-
2647 to reserve your seat or email A donation of $10 at the door is
suggested. For further information contact Frank Clements at

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

25th Schoolship Season Begins

Today, May 1st, 2013, begins our 25th season providing ISEA's Schoolship Program to the students of Michigan.  This spring we have 100 classes booked - a full schedule.  Today we had Frankfort Elementary in the morning and Kennedy Elementary (Manistee) in the afternoon aboard Inland Seas and another Kennedy classroom aboard Manitou this afternoon. --Capt. Tom

Inland Seas departs this afternoon with Kennedy Elementary Students. Note the fine weather and clear water!