Intern Tobias Francis installs a rib on the Wabanaki birch-bark canoe to be launched at the Damariscotta town landing on Thursday, April 27.
During the past month, many hands have shaped bark, bent ribs, split and lashed spruce roots, laid in planks, wedged ribs into place, and sealed seams. Master canoe-builder Steve Cayard, interns Dan Asher and Tobias Francis, and students from Lincoln Academy are putting the finishing touches on a traditional 14-foot Wabanaki birch-bark canoe at Lincoln Academy’s Applied Technology and Engineering Center, where the construction is taking place. This one-of-a-kind project is the result of a partnership between Damariscotta River Association and Lincoln Academy, with support provided by LincolnHealth as well as members of the community.
Now ready for its maiden paddle, this special canoe will receive a special send-off. The public is invited to join representatives from Lincoln Academy, DRA, and the Maliseet First Nation for a procession and the ceremonial launching of this remarkable craft on Thursday, April 27. The processional group will gather at the Lincoln Academy flagpole at 1 p.m. that day and will carry the canoe to the Damariscotta town landing, where the ceremony will begin at around 1:30 p.m. Maliseet representative Wayne Brooks will lead the ceremony, giving a blessing before the canoe is launched for the first time. In the event of rain, the event will be moved to Friday, April 28, at the same time.
Lincoln Academy is located at 81 Academy Hill Road, Newcastle.