There is something extraordinary about the Nantucket Regatta. The remarkable program exists in the background. Allie Wright is a member of the Board of Directors of Nantucket Race Week. There is something extraordinary about the Nantucket Regatta. The remarkable program exists in the background. Allie Wright is a member of the Board of Directors of Nantucket Race Week.
Allie is a former teacher who spent 30 years teaching in a low income area outside of Nantucket. After retirement, Allie began working with one of the local elementary schools. In partnership with the school's 7th and 8th grade Science teacher, Allie created a six-lesson series teaching the science of floating and racing on the water. Allie would teach the Series taking over the entire class once a week for six consecutive weeks. She brought a great deal of enthusiasm and special effects to her lessons. The children were mesmerized every minute.
Allie offered the children the chance to volunteer at the Regatta. At first, the 12- and 13-year olds were given small tasks: folding letters, assembling goody bags, etc. As the children proved themselves capable and reliable, they were given more responsible jobs during the event planning and event management week. "Allie's Army" as the kids became known grew each year. The education program at the school expanded to a second elementary school, then to the high school and then to the town's second high school. The excitement of boating has infected thousands of children through this interaction.
The first class of students is well into their 20s now. They were bitten by the boating bug by the first classes taught by the enterprising Allie Wright. Thanks to the enthusiasm she brought to her six-lesson plan, Nantucket Race Week never has to reach out for volunteers, they always have plenty! There is even a waiting list!
Our role as Shades of Fun has expanded with Race Week over the years as well. We now supply all of the sunglasses worn by the volunteers. One of our groups ordered some of our highest quality of sunglasses last year and sold them at their souvenir stand. The sunglasses sold out by the end of Race Week and we were thrilled to receive their re-order for even more high quality sunglasses this year!
Why is this race so special?
The Massachusetts coastal town of Nantucket enjoys a deep boating and shipping history. Each year the town hosts a Regatta that has increased in popularity each year. An enterprising retired teacher developed an extensive intern program that mixed high school students with experienced event planners. Mixing event planning skills with the excitement of boating skills has enabled the participating students a unique experience that has changed lives. Article includes image of the personalized sunglasses that Shades of Fun! created for this epic New England boating event.
Note: Our customer stories are composites of actual customer backgrounds. Locations and names have been changed to protect our customer's privacy.