ROCKLAND — For the second year in a row, the Sail, Power, and Steam Museum held a free youth sailing program called SKFF (Sail Kids For Free) from their Rockland Harbor location next to Snow Marine Park. Working with kids from 6 to 14 years old, the program ran eleven 1-week sessions with a total of 97 participants throughout the summer, an increase of over 50% from last year, according to the Museum, in a news release.
“Once word got out about SKFF,” said Diane Sternberg, program director, “we were filled to capacity with a healthy waiting list throughout the season. Our docks and boats were filled with laughter and energy!”
Museum co-founder, Capt. Jim Sharp, added, “I can’t begin to tell you how wonderful it is to be able to provide these kids the opportunity to get out on the water, regardless of their ability to pay. Our mission is to run interactive programs that teach both young and old about our maritime history and heritage. This is a great way to grab their attention at an early age.”
“Expanding the program during a second summer of the pandemic was especially important. Getting them outside and off their computers, teaching the art and science of sailing, having them experience the environment while participating in a program that encourages resilience, independence, and leadership – well, you just can’t beat that,” added Sharp.
“Special thanks go to museum supporters as well as foundations such as Maine Community Foundations’ Knox County Fund, the Wild Blue Fund, the Metcalfe Family Fund for Knox County, and the Captain Raymond Thombs Memorial Fund,” said the release.
Several local companies also added their support through corporate sponsorships, including Knight Marine Service, Hamilton Marine, and Jeff’s Marine.
Those who wish to help the museum continue to expand and further develop this program can donate on line at www.sailpowersteammuseum.org or send a check directly to Sail, Power, and Steam Museum, 75 Mechanic Street, Rockland, ME 04841.