In 2017, we celebrated ten wonderful years of the Great Fogo Island Punt Race to There and Back. We are thankful to the fantastic team of people who made this race happen every single year: Colleen Higgins, Pete Decker, Tony Cobb, Aidan Penton, Marshall Oake, Janice Thomson, Paddy Barry, the on-water and on-land support teams, and all the boat builders who crafted the mighty punts.
In fact, the yearly punt race has been so effective in animating our energy around the punts that we are now busy creating a Fogo Island Punt Centre. Based around a traditional fishing premises in Joe Batt’s Arm, the Centre will allow us to move beyond a one-day race and foster a daily and more immediate relationship with the punts.
The Punt Centre remains under construction, but once the premises are commissioned in the spring of 2019, we will be rolling out broad and diverse programming that will be inclusive of punt races as well as other interactions with these singular wooden boats. In addition, the Punt Centre will carry forward the history of Fogo Island’s inshore fishery, allowing visitors and locals alike to interact with the methods and tools of our cod fishing heritage.
In sum, we are taking a breather in 2018 so that we can come back in 2019 with a deeper set of initiatives around the punts. Thanks to all who organized and rowed in the Great Fogo Island Punt Race to There and Back. The Punt Centre will honour all those who got us this far; we look forward to taking their good work and building it into something new.
We will share more updates as they become available; we are thankful to all for their continued support and enthusiasm for the punts.