The We-Ha Cruiser
Smith STEM School (West Hartford, CT)
April - May 2018 - School Assembly
May 14, 2018 - Ready for Launch
May 18, 2018 - LaunchedThe We-Ha Cruiser was launched off the F/V Terri Ann. Thanks to Marc Palombo and his crew for taking such good care of her!Watch the launch video here:
May 23, 2018 - Spotted at sea
May 28, 2018 - Landed in Chatham, Massachusetts
After an unusually long stretch of easterly winds, The We-Ha Cruiser came ashore on Monomoy Island, a remote section of seal infested beach south of Chatham, Massachusetts. Efforts were made to contact various parties that occasionally visit the island including the US Fish & Wildlife Rangers but no positive connection was made over the Memorial Day Holiday. Perhaps the school children can research the area and scheme other ways to get the little Wa-he back to the mainland?
June 12, 2018 - Recovered
With assistance from multiple parties like Matt Hillman (US Fish & Wildlife), Jamie Bassett (shellfisherman/aquaculturist), Jason Holm (Chatham Harbormaster), Jim Manning (NOAA oceanographer), Eric Rushby (Jim’s nephew), and Ed Callahan (Sharon’s fellow teacher’s husband), the We-Ha was recovered from Monomoy on June 10th and subsequently delivered back to Connecticut. See pics below.
Unfortunately, the WeHa is badly damaged: missing a keel and a torn mast step. We are not sure when it occurred but we see evidence of the WeHa having been recovered while at sea by the “F/V Liberty”. As seen in the photo below, the crew added their names to the sail so there is at least some chance, damage occurred during this recovery by pirates!
After close examination, the missing keel is not too surprising because the bead of epoxy on the hull shows no sign of contact with the keel itself (see pic).
The We-Ha Cruiser was refurbished and set to sea again.
September 2018 - Repairs
The We-Ha Cruiser was picked up by Dean from Yankee Boat Yard in Portland CT who did a fabulous job with repairs. The students redecorated the top.
October 10, 2018 - Launched at sea
It was redeployed on 10 October just northeast of the Hudson Canyon.
After an excursion north through the remnants of Hurricane Mike, it appears now to be safely on its way out to sea!
March 27, 2019 - Quiet after 168 days at sea
After circling around the Atlantic in 168 days, the We-Ha Cruiser sent her last message on March 25, 2019. We hope she washes up someday soon!
January 18, 2020 - Recovered in the Azores
On the morning of January 18, 2020, Educational Passages received word that another miniboat had been found in the Azores! The boat (well, half the boat because it was only the hull) washed up on Faial Island in the Azores and was found by Jorge Fontes, a biologist researcher at the University of the Azores. To figure out what boat it was, the only identifying features we had to identify it was the color of the bottom paint and foam inside near the keel. Pictures later confirmed the unique bottom paint color and keel repair from the first voyage was from the We Ha Cruiser which stopped reporting months before.
The amazing Escola Azul team is once again helping us to connect classrooms across the Atlantic so stay tuned for more…
The name of our boat is The We-Ha Cruiser. We-Ha is a nickname for West Hartford. There are even a few media sites that use it we-ha.com is one of them. The naming process started with students offering suggestions in their classroom.