December 2017 - Preparations at the Melrose School
CISF and the Melrose School assembled their miniboat in December and January, see pictures below! CISF also built a miniboat with the Lawn School (the Jamestown Drifter) which is being fitted with a sensor package to record air and water temperature.
February 2018 - Ready for launching
In January of 2018, CISF Director Meg Myles drove Midnight Moon up to Sandwich, Mass. so it can be launched off George’s Bank by fisherman Marc Palombo.
The project was also highlighted in the news: School children to leave mark on Atlantic in the Jamestown Press (a local Rhode Island newspaper). These boats are the first boats out of Rhode Island for Educational Passages!
By February 5, the Midnight Moon was aboard the F/V Terri Ann and ready to be launched on February 6 off George’s Bank along with another miniboat, the Nequasset.
February 6, 2018 - Launching Day
The Midnight Moon was launched at 0745 local on Georges Bank as seen in the video provided by Captain Marc Palombo on the F/V Terri Ann:
December 2018 - Sailing near the Azores
The Midnight Moon sailed across the Atlantic and went quiet just near the Azores in November. She reported two other positions but the battery appears to be drained. She reported on December 10, 2018 but then fell quiet.
January 2019 - Reported north of the Azores
On January 24, the story of the Midnight Moon was shared by the Jamestown Press – read the article, Melrose boat adrift at sea, bound for Europe here. It references the December 2018 report, but not the January 10 one! She must have reported before the article went to press.
Alas, we did not hear from her again after January 10, until…
November 28, 2019 - RECOVERED IN FRANCE!
The Midnight Moon has made it to Europe! Thanks to beach walker Antoine Sirjean from Sainte-Marie-de-Ré, France, who alerted us of the news on Thanksgiving Day. We are so grateful for him and for these little boats that connect us all over the world. We are now working to connect the students in Rhode Island with those in France.
Here are some pictures from Antoine. We can’t help but wonder what happened to this little boat out at sea?
The local news covered the story on December 4 with the article “Un bateau éducatif à la mer“.
Inside the cargo hold, while the GPS was missing, was still 17 bracelets made by the students who set the boat to sea. The text accompanying them said, “Hi, we made friendship bracelets for you, we are Madame Martinelli’s 4th class at Melrose School in Jamestown Rhode Island USA, we hope you like them.” There was drawings and USB drives.
Two years after it was launched into the Atlantic, in February 2020, the story of Midnight Moon also made made a media blitz in France:
Conanicut Island Sailing Foundation (CISF) has a goal to spark student curiosity through hands-on learning and expose them to their local marine ecosystems. They were awarded a grant from 11th Hour Racing to run in-school programming during the 2017-18 school year with miiboats (and other projects) at Jamestown, Rhode Island public schools (elementary and middle schools).