~ Involving the community in traditional boat building projects to preserve Oyster Bay’s maritime heritage~
This Construction of a replica of the Ida Mayoyster harvesting boat is the second project of the Christeen Corp whose mission is to preserve Oyster Bay’s maritime heritage by involving the community in traditional boatbuilding. The keel was laid on December 9, 2011.THE PAST: The original Ida May, built in 1925,worked on the waters of Oyster Bay for 75 years and was historically significant because she was one of the first oyster dredges to be powered by an engine as opposed to a sail. THE PRESENT:The Project is also unique because construction is mostly by volunteers. Under the direction of a local shipwright, a core group of engineers, carpenters, and businessmen are making the Project a priority in their lives. Most are retired and enjoy the challenges and complexity of building a boat by hand. They also appreciate the camaraderie of working in a group to contribute to something worthwhile and enduring. THE FUTURE:When she is complete, the Ida May will take the public out on Oyster Bay to enjoy and learn about its ecology and maritime history. She will be managed by the WaterFront Center, a closely affiliated non-profit organization that connects people to the water by providing education and recreational programs and rentals.