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Magazine

SEAFARING | June 2019: New York “Seafaring” State of Mind

SEAFARING | June 2019: New York “Seafaring” State of Mind

Thousand Island Park

Our June theme is very dear to me. I grew up with the ocean practically in my backyard; raised to know its power and importance. I am beaming with nostalgic memories and delighted to introduce this month in a “Seafaring” State of Mind.

Silda and I both went down the “rabbit hole”, or should we say “hawsehole”, of all things marine in New York State. What we both were surprised by was the vast amount of fresh- and saltwater the state accounts for: 52,337 miles of rivers and streams, 577 miles of Great Lakes shoreline, 7,849 miles of lakes (excluding the Great Lakes), ponds, reservoirs, 117.5 miles of Atlantic shoreline, 1,530 square miles of estuaries, bays, harbors, 2.4 million acres of freshwater wetlands, 25,000 acres of tidal wetlands, and finally 578 miles alone in the New York City area according to a recent New York Times article meant to shed light on the effects of climate change, and its subsidiaries like pollution, to our seas and (rising) sea-bordering land and offer some solutions. (Good to note: World Oceans Day is June 8th -- all eyes will be on our collective waters this month!).

Photo: Hudson Sailing

There are arguments actually stating New York received its “Empire State” nickname because of its waterways; invading parties reached the area on neighboring waters like the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario during the Revolutionary War. We won the war and constructed one of the most important canals, the Erie, in American history. The sometimes controversial Erie Canal directly influenced the expansion and development of our country.

A great deal of “Seafaring” topics will be covered this month. From all 60 of New York State’s maritime museums and institutions with maritime collections, to the incredible and inspiring story of the John J. Harvey fireboat (I just saw the John J. Harvey shooting water high up into the air in front of Lady Liberty in the Harbor for last week’s annual NYC Fleet Week). We’ll list our favorite New York State lighthouses and summer events happening on boats and talk about maritime craft traditions of the Hudson River and a few “Seafaring”-inspired DIY crafts. A special recipe from Hudson Valley VegFest will be shared, along with houseboats you can rent throughout the state.

Shop the "Seafaring" Collection: Gifts Inspired by the Sea >>

Tomorrow I leave for the New York Thousand Islands region (another adventurous story coming soon to the Magazine in June!), where boating, fishing, and life on the water is so embedded in local culture that being in a “Seafaring” State of Mind is as natural as the formation of 1,864 islands.

Nautical details on historic houseboat La Duchesse built in 1903 for George Boldt and his family. Tour La Duchesse at the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton, NY.

Follow along this month; there’s so much to learn and discover about New York State through a “Seafaring” lens.