Thursday, January 30, 2014


"What can a song do? What can a sailboat do? Some would say music exists just to soothe or distract people from their troubles. Some say sailboats are just rich men’s toys. Wrong, wrong. In the summer of 1969 they helped to start cleaning up a river." -Pete Seeger

Pete Seeger passed away earlier this week at the age of 94. I think of him often when I take BIANKA sailing on the Hudson River. Usually it might for a just few days to spend some time enjoying one of my favorite anchorages near Hook Mountain. But, I have also taken my boat on up the river all the way up to Albany when I sailed my boat into Canada for a Nonsuch Rendezvous back in 2002. To me Pete Seeger's legacy will always be his efforts to raise awareness and money in efforts to clean up the Hudson through his help in founding  of the Clearwater organization in 1966. The efforts of he and others have paid off so much that the Hudson River known as  America's River because of it's place in history is considerably cleaner today than it was just a short time ago. So much so that people including me can once again swim in it's refreshing waters.  One of his major efforts was helping to raise money to build the CLEARWATER a 106 foot gaff rigged replica of a Hudson River sloop. The type of sailing vessel  that plied the Hudson in the 1800's. I often come across it sailing in my cruises to New York and elsewhere.
I'm sure that like the Hudson River every time I see the CLEARWATER from now on from the cockpit of BIANKA I'll always remember Pete Seeger and the efforts of he and others in helping to clean up one of America's most beautiful waterways and start singing one of Pete Seeger's tunes about the Hudson River.

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