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A night to remember at ASTA’s Annual Fundraiser

Posted by Tall Ships America on July 15, 2009

Amelia N. Smith – July 14th


Sunday was our big day, the ASTA Annual Fundraiser on tall ship Concordia to raise money for sail training and education.  I started off the evening directing guests to the reception by greeting them at the beginning of the pier.  They were easy to spot—the well-heeled guests and spotless crew and cadets. 

Soon the night’s entertainment began with graceful and flexible Romanian dancers performing to whimsical music.  Representing the tall ship Mircea, crew continued showcasing Romanian culture, singing three songs. 

MIRCEA chorus

MIRCEA chorus










Romanian dancers

Romanian dancers















Next was Rona II from the U.K, who taught the crowd cockney.  They started off by introducing their Sherman Tank (Yank), with whom they eat Ruby Murray (Curry).  Lessons and explanation were next: take a word (stairs), find a rhyming word (pears), and then put a word in front that turns it into a phrase (apples and pears).  Sometimes famous people’s names are used, for example, John Wayne is train.  Bangers and mash is cash.  Then they broke into a humorous song of cockney rhyming.


RONA II Rhyming Cockney slang

RONA II Rhyming Cockney slang












It was then on to the crew of Russian sail training vessel Kruzenshtern, who began with a few words by a crew member thanking the beautiful city of Boston for its hospitality.  Crew played instruments and sang for the first part of their performance.  Then, five cadets came out to dance and perform synchronized acrobatics on the stage.

 Urania broke the musical theme by creating a fun knot tying game for guests to play.  Crew demonstrated the bowline to couples, who put them around their wrists, tying them together.  Undoing themselves was a challenge for some, but the Captain of Urania and ASTA Director Bert Rogers managed.

 In between performances, Nelly raised fundraiser items for all to see as she made her way through the crowd during the live auction bidding.  It was a beautiful night to enjoy music as Libertad crew members played the guitar and drum to traditional Argentinean music. 

The last act was the Hobo Band from the Pride of Baltimore II.  Jef Crosby sung and played guitar, Keith Barkwood played the upright electric  bass, with Matt Oates on fiddle and Michael Magno on banjo.  They performed “Folsom Prison Blues”, “Constant Sorrow”,”Cocaine Blues”,”Rock Me Mama “, and “Down Under” , among other traditional and non-traditional songs. 

To complete our Boston experience, Monday morning Erin, Nelly and I watched Belle Poule and Etoile leave the dock rafted together with a bag piper playing on the bow. The notes wafted throughout the awakening city and  Boston seemed empty with the absence of ships, but we are all looking forward to Halifax!


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