CORNWALL, Ontario – The astounding Bluenose II schooner, a replica of the original Bluenose that appears on the Canadian dime, docked in Cornwall during the evening of Monday, June 24.
“We are on our way to the Great Lakes Tall Ship Challenge and the first official stop is in Toronto,” explained Devyn Kaizeer, Deckhand with Bluenose II for two seasons. “So we left Nova Scotia from Lunenburg on June 15 and we went straight up to Quebec City. Since then, we have been stopping (in different cities) along the journey.”
Kaizeer said that the Tall Ship Challenge will see the Bluenose II meet with other tall ships that have journeyed to Toronto, all welcoming and educating visitors upon arrival. The challenge occurs about once every three years.
“It’s a lot of hard work but you get to sail the Bluenose II and travel; it’s pretty amazing,” said Kaizeer about the job.
Built in 1963, the Bluenose II has been dedicated to travelling and teaching as many people about the original Bluenose and Nova Scotia as possible. Deckhands on board the ships are also responsible for teaching all young Canadians on board the traditional sailing skills.
“The original Bluenose was built as a fishing and racing schooner in 1921 and it was famous because it was undefeated in international fisherman races; it was the first time the hardworking seafarer was respected for their work. Unfortunately it sank off of the coast of Haiti in 1946. As it was known all over the world, people started coming to Lunenburg wondering where it was,” explained Kaizeer.
Kaizeer said that all crew members commenced their work on April 1, working to upgrade and paint the vessel, carry out necessary maintenance and cover all safety regulations. The schooner will arrive back to its home in Lunenburg on Sept. 12 and crew members will be finished preparing the fleet for winter by approx. Oct. 15.