The Lois McClure to begin it’s summer tour

FERRISBURGH — It’s official: Lake Champlain Maritime Museum’s schooner Lois McClure is preparing to embark on her 2013 tour. This year’s thematic and interpretive message is “1813: The Shipwrights’ War, and Other Stories.”
“The shipbuilding races and naval battles of 1813 helped to determine the outcome of the War of 1812, and left a legacy of shipwrecks beneath the waters of the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence River and Lake Champlain,” explains Art Cohn, special project director. “Our dynamic outreach program explores history where it happened, on the anniversary of the cross-border war that ushered in 200 years of peace.”
The journey begins in June on the Champlain Canal, and continues west across the Erie Canal to Buffalo, N.Y., to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry’s victory at the Battle of Lake Erie — an event of special interest to Senior Capt. Roger Taylor, a descendant of the commodore. The schooner will enter Lake Ontario via the Oswego Canal, and then travel down the St. Lawrence and Richelieu, returning to Lake Champlain in October.
“Enthusiasm and demand for the tour is very high,” reports Erick Tichonuk, LCMM co-director. “We have been invited to visit more than 40 communities in New York, Ontario and Quebec, including many new ports of call, and fundraising efforts are in full gear to make them all possible.”
New York State Canal Corp. has already signed on as a principal 2013 partner. Free admission is offered throughout the tour thanks to the generous support of sponsors including the state of Vermont, Parcs Canada, the farm families of Cabot Creamery, Lake Champlain Chocolates, and Shelburne Shipyard. “Sponsorship opportunities are still available,” says Tichonuk. “Our wonderful partners and sponsors have made possible every journey this boat has taken. You can follow our progress at www.lcmm.org as details are confirmed in the weeks ahead.”
LCMM’s authentic replica 1862 canal schooner Lois McClure has no means of propulsion other than sail, so 1964 tugboat C.L. Churchill serves as power. As with all wooden vessels, constant care and maintenance is needed to ensure safe and effective operation. LCMM officials express special thanks to the Friends of C.L. Churchill, New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC), Lake Champlain Basin Program, and LTC for their help and support of tour planning and vessel maintenance and operations.
For more information visit www.lcmm.org or call 802-475-2022.

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