Maiden finally reached New York on her postponed three-year world tour! We were just about to start the East Coast legs of the tour when Covid struck, and we had to call a temporary two-year halt. Maiden has made her way up the East Coast since April, visiting Miami, Charleston, Annapolis, Norfolk and now New York where we will spend the whole of June.
A flotilla of yachts had been organised by Liberty Yacht Club to meet Maiden at the Statue of Liberty at 5pm and I would be taking out some Maiden supporters on the beautiful MV Full Moon along with, among others, Maeve Gately from Hudson River Community Sailing https://hudsonsailing.org/ along with three young ladies from the organisation; Sadia Zaman, Kaitlin Cho, Wendy Lin. Carolina Salguero from https://portsidenewyork.org/ Supporter, John Ebbert also joined us to see his aunt’s name on the hull of Maiden for the first time; Ebbie Ebbert!
Sadly, rain was forecast and Liberty Yacht Club decided not to go out – but we were not deterred! We left the dock at 4.30 and by 5pm we were on site waiting for Maiden and her crew to appear on the horizon.
She looked so gorgeous sailing in, and the crew were as pleased to see us as we were to see them. Belle was in a RIB with some Press photographers and a film crew, and we met up with them as well as Maiden reached the Statue of Liberty and what a sight it was. Everyone on every boat and yacht was cheering and it really was quite emotional watching Junella on the wheel bringing Maiden into New York.
We then saw Fireboat, ‘Firefighter Feehan’, with the huge jets of water arching upwards and outwards behind Maiden which looked incredible and we were also joined by the Coastguard and Police boats! The rain held off and along with other yachts which appeared alongside us we escorted Maiden up the East Rover towards Brooklyn with the New York skyline forming an awe-inspiring back drop.
The Staten Island Ferry actually took a pause to let us past and just as we reached One 15 Brooklyn, where Maiden will be for the next few days, the rain started! It mattered not one bit and we barely noticed it as Maiden lowered her sails and motored into the marina – as looked up hundreds of people along the Brooklyn High Line looked down at us.
©The Maiden Factor/NewYorkMediaBoat 2022
We also moored up and I got off Full Moon to greet the crew and also to meet our wonderful Milebuilders, Marla Keith and Jennifer Ellefson who have so patiently waited two years after being accepted, to finally join Maiden for a leg. It was an emotional meeting and they both said they had, had a wonderful experience and that the Maiden crew are great – and of course we think so too!
As the crew got ready to unload Maiden and get to their crew house, we all bid farewell, boarded Full Moon and head back to North Cove; happy, excited, tired, and emotional. A great few hours for all of us and well worth getting a bit wet!
We would like to say a huge thank you to the all-female Skipper and Crew of the Full Moon (Classic Harbor Lone Cruises for looking after us so expertly and The FDNY (Fire Department NYC) and the Skipper and Crew of the vessel, named “Firefighter Feehan“, for the magnificent Fireboat water display.