It’s a Partnership
As we get ready to open the Museum to the public with our Winter’s Aweigh celebration beginning February 15, Mystic Seaport enters 2014 on the heels of a very successful year in 2013. Our attendance was strong and our membership numbers were the highest they have been since 2007. The widely acclaimed Mystic Seaport for Educators project was launched, breaking down the barriers of geography and opening our collections and educational programs in meaningful ways to learners across the nation and beyond. Of course, we passed another major milestone with the launch of the Charles W. Morgan in preparation for her 38th Voyage this summer.
We could not achieve all that we aspire toward without the aid and support of our many partners. This past year, we were very fortunate to strengthen many existing relationships and also to forge some significant new partnerships. Two new partners on the maritime front, the Gowrie Group and Brewers Yacht Yards have stepped forward to lend support to our membership and waterfront teams to build value for existing Museum members and to help us acquire new members to Mystic Seaport. I would be remiss if I did not mention one of our longest tenured partners, WoodenBoat Publications, which for the past seven years has brought their WoodenBoat Show to Mystic Seaport. This has become our busiest weekend of the entire year.
The National Endowment for the Humanities partnered with us to fund key elements of the 38th Voyage and the Voyaging in the Wake of the Whalers exhibit to be opened in the Stillman Building in 2015. A new partner, the Begary Trust, came forward to provide vital support to help dozens of schools in northeastern Connecticut participate in educational programs both at Mystic Seaport and through virtual visits.
Looking ahead to the 38th Voyage of the Morgan, our steadfast partners at NOAA will be aiding our efforts as we travel onto Stellwagen Bank to sail among the whales that feed on the banks in the summer months. As one final example of important partners, I must call your attention to the State of Connecticut which has been an important partner in the success of Mystic Seaport throughout our 84-year history, and instrumental to our success with restoration work on the Morgan.
I know all too well, that in recognizing these specific examples of Museum partners, I have named but a few of the hundreds of valuable relationships that help us achieve success each year. It is my hope, however, that this brief snapshot of the breadth and depth of support that Mystic Seaport is so fortunate to receive, will inspire you to think about other potential partners and partnerships that you can help us to establish.