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Small Penetanguishene group's mission to preserve 19th century beauty on the water


The Ship's Company of Penetanguishene is a group of volunteers dedicated to preserving traditional seamanship skills whotake to the water every Monday and Thursday.

"We do sail training, so we get people to learn all the ropes of traditional sailing. Mostly, we just like being out on the water, about history, learning how to build boats, we do a lot of work in the boat shop," said Mark Simpson, operations manager with the Ship's Company of Penetanguishene.

Over the past two decades, the group has created three replica war boats - the Badger, the Lynx and the Revenge.

"The badger we launched in 2001, the Lynx we launched in 2012 for the Bicentennial - the war of 1812 - and the Revenge was the first one we built, and we started that one in 2000," said Simpson.

Replica war boats created by The Ship's Company of Penetanguishene. (CTV News/Molly Frommer)

The Ship's Company of Penetanguishene has roughly 40 members, including Frank Kee.

"I've always been sailing with my father and my family since I was a child, like 12 or so, and I've always loved it. I've earned the title of Coxswain, which is the steer of the boat and give orders to raise this sail, put that sail down, tie things up, untie," said Kee.

Frank Kee is a member with the Ship's Company of Penetanguishene. (CTV News/Molly Frommer)

And the work doesn't stop when the snow falls, members keep busy during the colder months as well.

"We refurbish the boats in the wintertime - like paint them and repair any damage that was done over the summer - and so that's winter stuff Monday and Thursday every winter. We socialize, and it's a lot of fun," said Kee.

Officials with The Ship's Company of Penetanguishene say they are always looking for new members to join. Top Stories

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