CBMM’s Rising Tide Celebrates Stand-up Paddleboard Launch
ST. MICHAELS, Md., Nov. 21, 2022 – A crowd of family, friends and supporters gathered Sunday afternoon around Fogg’s Cove on the campus of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum to celebrate the latest completed project for the Rising Tide after-school program.
Since last winter, a group of local middle school students have been working to build two stand-up paddleboards through the CBMM program, and during the Eastern Shore Sea Glass & Coastal Arts Festival, they marked a job well done with a festive celebration on a chilly afternoon that included a ceremonial splashing of the boards as well as a sparkling apple juice toast.
It was a milestone day for Rising Tide, which has been teaching students in grades 6-9 basic boatbuilding and woodworking skills in a welcoming, relaxed environment since 2015.
“I am extremely proud of the hard work that these students have put into the build of these paddleboards,” said CBMM Workshop Education Manager Kendall Wallace, who oversees the program. “With involvement at absolutely every step of the building process, the students learned many new skills, and those who had never used a plane, clamp, or chisel quickly became masters of the craft.”
“I sincerely hope that the lessons of dedication, persistence, and precision that were practiced through this project will serve as foundations for their futures inside and outside of the workshop.”
A dozen Rising Tide participants, led by CBMM staff and volunteers, worked together over approximately six months, with a summer break for camp programming, to bring the paddleboards to life.
The first few months were filled with the prep work, including building ladder and rocker tables, sawing cedar for the top and bottom panels, and assembling the internal skeleton frame.
Once the program resumed in September, the focus turned to bead and cove strip rail assembly, top panel attachment, and shaping. Last week, the group sealed the boards with fiberglass and epoxy in the final step to get them ready for the water.
Constructing two boards meant twice as much action for the students to keep all hands busy during class time. One was recently auctioned off to help support the program, and the other will remain in CBMM’s fleet of paddle craft as an enduring reminder of the hard work of the students to take the project from start to finish.
“Although the project had a few complicated steps, most of the work was straightforward and fun,” Wallace said. “It was a great experience for the students to take ownership of the work and see how each component makes the paddleboard look more complete.”
After a holiday break, the program will return in the new year, starting on Jan. 23, to tackle another exciting project. This time, the students will work alongside apprentices from CBMM’s Shipyard on the build of a St. Michaels scow.
The program meets each Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday after school from 3:30-5:30pm at CBMM. Transportation is offered from the Easton YMCA and St. Michaels Middle/High School.