The Christeen, a 40-foot, gaff-rigged sloop, owned and operated by The WaterFront Center, a nonprofit community sailing and marine education center located in Theodore Roosevelt Park, will be present at Oyster Fest. Christeen connects people to the water through education and recreation, taking out more than 3,000 passengers each year. The oldest surviving oyster sloop in America and a National Historic Landmark, Christeen was originally built in 1883 for Captain William Smith in Glenwood Landing for harvesting oysters in Oyster Bay and Cold Spring Harbor. For more than 125 years, she has served as an oyster dredge and also as a cargo carrier and live aboard between Connecticut, New York and New Jersey. After surviving 16 major hurricanes, numerous Nor’easters, two sinkings and severe neglect, Christeen was returned home to Oyster Bay in 1992. Volunteers worked with a full-time shipwright and raised more than $300,000 to completely restore and launch Christeen in 1999.
Observe West Harbor and Oyster Bay from a different viewpoint as you cut through the water under sail and look towards the shore. See wildlife, important landmarks, and learn about some of the history of the home of a former President.
Schedule: Saturday and Sunday, 1 to 2:30 p.m. and 3 to 4:30 p.m.
Ages 5 and older. Cost: $25 adults/$10 children under 12 with paying adult
Ida May Project
The Christeen Oyster Sloop Preservation Corporation is building a replica of the historically significant Ida May oyster dredge. The original Ida May was built in Bayville by Frank M. Flower in 1925 as one of the oyster industry’s first powered dredges. The completed replica will be owned and operated by the WaterFront Center for public recreation and marine and maritime education. The mission of the Christeen Oyster Sloop Preservation Corp. is “to preserve Oyster Bay’s maritime heritage by involving the community in traditional boatbuilding projects.”
Many volunteers under the guidance of local shipwright Josh Herman are learning new skills working together to create a significant vessel.
Since 2009, Building J, a large shed on the Western Waterfront, has been transformed into a boatbuilding shop. The Christeen Corp is raising capital to complete the project, www.idamayproject.org.