GALLERIES: Sailfest 2014
Speaking from aboard the schooner Amistad Sunday morning, four state representatives thanked Amistad America for bringing the ship to Sailfest after it initially backed out of its commitment to the festival.
“It took a Herculean effort to get here today,” Hanifa Washington, executive director of Amistad America Inc., said. “When I made the call Tuesday, we didn't have the properly licensed people or crew onboard and we could not legally leave the dock. We also had safety equipment that was off for servicing in preparation for the Coast Guard inspection.”
MORE STORIES: Sailfest 2014
UPDATE: 8:50 p.m. A steady stream of visitors boarded the Amistad Saturday after it opened for free tours just before 3 p.m., hearing the dramatic story of the 1839 revolt by enslaved Africans aboard the original vessel but not about the recent drama with the schooner's finances and management.
“We’re close to meeting the requirements that will allow us to safely move The Amistad to New London, but it’s still too early to say we’re going,” said Hanifa Washington, executive director of Amistad America, in the press release.
The fireworks display, among the biggest in the Northeast, is scheduled for Saturday, the second day of the city's three-day Sailfest celebration. It will mark the 22nd straight year the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe has sponsored the fireworks.
Sailfest 2014 VIDEOS
Southeastern Connecticut is a premier summer playground, thanks to its beaches, outdoor concerts, Shakespeare in the Park, sailing, al fresco dining, carnivals and countless other warm-weather activities - and the season's entertainment blockbuster, ...