500 Sails

Four 500 Sails canoes eagerly awaiting their new yellow-sailed sister, "Auntie Oba."

500 Sails photo

(Press Release) — 500 Sails is inviting the public to join them this Sunday at 10 a.m. at the Guma Sakman in Susupe for the launching of the newest canoe named Jacoba Seman, lovingly called "Auntie Oba."

Watch for the bright yellow sail to be added to our lagoon. Auntie Oba (a loving nickname for Jacoba Seman) will be the fifth proa (sailing canoe) housed at the Guma Sakman that is part of the 500 Sails programs for the community. 

She joins Neni, Richard Seman, Anåguan, and Dee Dee for both the Sunday Sails program and the more formal Lalåyak (sailing classes).

She was built using the "Anson Drawing" of a Chamorro sakman that was made in 1742 on Tinian when an English ship, the Centurion, was under repairs for several months.

500 Sails continues to build traditional Chamorro canoes using that drawing with modern materials, which are more available than big trees that provide food. 

“We are trying to get more people in and on the water as quickly as possible as part of our mission to revive, promote, and preserve the maritime cultural traditions of the Mariana Islands through community engagement in canoe culture activities and values,” 500 Sails stated.

“With the generous help of Carolinian Master Navigators Mario Benito and Cecilio Raiukiulipiy and their families, sailing programs have been developed and the building of canoes has intensified.”

Auntie Oba's launch will open this Sunday's Sunday Sails activities at 10 a.m. Every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., free canoe rides are given to the community as well as an introduction to sailing these canoes. A potluck BBQ is also part of the regular family friendly activities.

500 Sails is grateful to all the hands and hearts that have brought Auntie Oba to life, especially to partner Indigenous Affairs Office for housing us in the 500 Sails Boatyard and the Guma Sakman.

For more information: email info@500sails.org, follow 500 Sails at https://www.facebook.com/500SailsDolphinClubSaipan, or call 500 Sails co-founder Emma Perez at 670-285-4268.

comments powered by Disqus