NORTHEAST HARBOR, ME — I met Gail Grandgent last year on Islesford and Great Cranberry. She is a Wednesday Spinner. Gail remembered a trip the Spinners took to IaH aboard Sunbeam IV in the 1980’s. She asked if we could work together to re-create the Sunbeam V trip. That’s what we did.
As I understand it, the Spinners have been meeting weekly, for over forty years, to share their craft, learn from one another, and spend a day together doing something they love. They meet every Wednesday during the Fall, Winter and Spring. In Summer they need the extra day to shear their flocks, card and dye the fleece and spin the wool for their own use or to sell.
The group proved to be hearty, enduring a rough ride to-and-from Isle au Haut (IaH). Once there, the Spinners quickly set-up their wheels in the main hall of IaH’s Town Hall.
Islanders were welcome throughout the day to watch, learn, or sit and spin/knit with the group. The immediate camaraderie and companionship between the Spinners and the islanders was lovely. You would have never guessed they were meeting for the first time. It was like watching old friends come together.
Sunbeam V steward Jillian brought lunch to the Town Hall; a feast of roasted butternut squash soup, scalloped potatoes, salad, and warm bread. Lisa Turner, a wonderful island baker and knitter made peanut butter cookies and chocolate cake for dessert.
Even with the rain, wind, and high seas, it was a perfect day.
Story and photos: Douglas Cornman, Maine Seacoast Mission Island Outreach Director