Wednesday, June 28, 2006

More About That Tugboat

Nice to get a couple of comments about the tugboat Hackensack and her ultragroovy paint job - that also reminded me to go do a little lunchtime sniffing around to figure out what exactly the deal was. I'd run into Pam one day as I was heading to work on the Adirondack & asked her about it - she's the owner of the tug Pegasus, which is berthed on the north side of Pier 62, which is also where the Hackensack has been berthed until she moved down to her current spot between Piers 61 & 62 (cattycorner from my schooner). I figured she'd be as likely as anyone to have the scoop on the paint job, being neighbors & all. Sure enough, she gave me the general outline I had already (nonprofit, kids in hospitals) - they had in fact approached her about using the Pegasus, but the Pegasus is a 1907 tug & if you follow that link I gave above, you can read all about the work Pamela is doing to restore the tug she piloted in New York Harbor from 1987 until the late 90's & convert her into a working museum -it's worth a visit - basically, though, the paint job wasn't going to fit very well with the charter Pamela's working under!

The guy who owns the Hackensack, though, was amenable to the peacockification of his tug for a good cause - and after just the quickest of Google searches today, I found the organization responsible - Portraits of Hope.

From their website:

In 1995, Ed Massey and Bernie Massey founded Portraits of Hope, continuing their utilization of art and poignant visual imagery for large-scale projects of social consequence. Developed initially as a creative therapy program for seriously ill and physically disabled children, the program has expanded to include a wide array of children and adults who participate through various community programs and institutions. From its inception, Portraits of Hope has emphasized hands-on civic engagement opportunities for the broader public. All projects under the Portraits of Hope umbrella concentrate on unifying families and communities through the arts.

The symbol of the Portraits of Hope program is a flower in an array of vibrant colors. The flower is the universal icon of joy, life, beauty, hope, inspiration and healing - the heart of the Portraits of Hope message.

The tugboat, which is the centerpiece of the Chelsea Piers project, is just one in a series of large-scale projects. You can read more them here.

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