Whaling Museum’s Sailors’ Series features adventures at sea

Captain and student crew of historic Tabor Boy open series February 27 

NEW BEDFORD, Mass. — The annual Sailors’ Series of talks at the New Bedford Whaling Museum returns on Thursday, February 27 with “The Adventures and History of the Tabor Boy.” Captain James Geil and his Tabor Academy high school student crew will recount the thrill of racing aboard the 100-year-old schooner, and the challenge of celestial navigation during the 645-mile Marion to Bermuda race. The Sailors’ Series, supported by Ruth and Hope Atkinson, presents a wide variety of experiences and adventures by individuals with lifelong commitments to sailing, boats, and the sea. The 2020 Sailors’ Series is dedicated to Llewellyn Howland III, and is supported in part by The Samuel D. Rusitzky Lecture Fund. This year’s series is presented in partnership with the Cruising Club of America, New Bedford Yacht Club, Beverly Yacht Club, and Tabor Academy. The Tabor Boy event includes a reception at 6:30 p.m. followed by the presentation at 7:00 p.m. Tickets cost $15.00 for Whaling Museum members and $20.00 for non-members, and can be purchased online at www.whalingmuseum.org or by calling 508-997-0046. The Whaling Museum is located at 18 Johnny Cake Hill in New Bedford, Massachusetts.

The SSV Tabor Boy is part sail training vessel, part classroom, and part lab. Operated by the Tabor Academy since 1954, the ship is a ninety-two foot, gaff-rigged, two-masted schooner. SSV stands for “Sailing School Vessel” and is the U.S. Coast Guard’s designation for the schooner. Each fall and spring the schooner is used as a sail training vessel. Team-building and character-building are hallmarks of the program in addition to sail training and seamanship. The biennial Marion to Bermuda Race is held in odd-numbered years. Tabor Boy finished first in the Classic Division of the 2019 race.

Renowned sailor Rich Wilson will give a Sailor’s Series talk called “Vendee Globe: Racing Solo Non-Stop Around the World” on Tuesday, April 14. The toughest sailing race in the world, the Vendee Globe requires three months of single-handed, non-stop racing. Fewer than 150 sailors have ever finished the race.  Wilson has done it twice, most recently in 2017 at the age of 66. Wilson interacted with two million school children through a unique education program he conducted while racing. A reception for this Sailors’ Series event begins at 6:00 p.m. and the presentation begins at 6:30 p.m. (Note: start times differ from the February event.)

Onne van der Wal, one of the most prolific and talented marine photographers in the world of sailing, gives a Sailors’ Series talk about “Yachting in Greenland” on Tuesday, May 12. Based in Newport, Rhode Island, van der Wal has been a Canon Explorer of Light since 1987. He is also a professional sailor who, amongst other accomplishments, was a crew member on Flyer, the winning Dutch entry in the 1981-82 Whitbread around the world race. A reception for this Sailors’ Series event begins at 6:00 p.m. and the presentation begins at 6:30 p.m. (Note: start times differ from the February event.)

Details on all Sailors’ Series events are available at www.whalingmuseum.org.


Tina Malott
Director of Marketing and Public Relations
New Bedford Whaling Museum
508-997-0046 Ext. 140


About the New Bedford Whaling Museum
The New Bedford Whaling Museum is the world's most comprehensive museum devoted to the global story of human interaction with whales through time, and the history and culture of the South Coast region. The cornerstone of New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, the Museum is located at 18 Johnny Cake Hill in the heart of the city's historic downtown. Museum hours: January through March, Tuesday – Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.; April through December, daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. Admission is free for Museum members and children ages three and under; adults $19, seniors (65+) $17, students (19+) $12, child and youth $9. For more information visit www.whalingmuseum.org.


Download high resolution images at: https://photos.app.goo.gl/WtSWRtjFizmSNaZP9


Photo credit (below): Onne van der Wal

photo of sailboat by Onne van der Wal


Caption (below): SSV Tabor Boy crew member practicing celestial navigation. Photo courtesy Tabor Academy.

SSV Tabor Boy crew member with navigation tool


(below) Photo courtesy Rich Wilson.

Photo of Rich Wilson