Historic steam-powered lighthouse tender Lilac. Photo via Historic Naval Ships Archive


Mark your calendars! Starting August 9, a new program begins onboard the historic steam-powered lighthouse tender LilacCaptain Mary’s Story Hour.


The brain-child of Capt. Mary Habstritt and her team, this program brings together reading-out-loud-story-time aboard the historic steam ship with special maritime-themed activities matching the book.

Author: Maira Kalman


To kick-off the launch, the children’s book: Fireboat: The Heroic Adventures of the John J. Harvey will be read aloud, [edit: Author Maira Kalman will not be able to attend.] then you’ll get to take a cruise on the books namesake and star, the fireboat John J. Harvey!

This exciting opportunity is FREE!
(Reservations are required for the boat rides since space is limited. There is no reservation required for the story hour portion of the program.)

Fireboat John J Harvey. Photo by Vlad Brezina via Wind Against Current


The first reading on the buoy deck at Lilac will be at 11:30 AM and the second is at 12:30 PM .

You can either take a ride on the fireboat from Pier 66 Maritime (in Hudson River Park at 26th Street) at 10:30 AM, followed by story-time at Lilac after, or start with the story at Lilac and board the fireboat there for a Harbor cruise, leaving at 12:00 PM.

Photo by bowsprite


Reservations for the boat rides on the John J. Harvey and can be made online:
Aug_9_10:30_AM Departure
Aug_9_Noon Departure

(There is a $10 refundable registration fee per person that is forfeited if you do not show up for the fireboat ride.)


Look forward to future story-hours with Little Toot, by Linda Gramatky-Smith where you’ll also get to build-your-own-paper-tugboat, and Lightship by Brian Floca with a proposed tour of the lightship Nantucket.  Check out the Hours and Events page at www.lilacpreservationproject.org for more info.

by Mai Armstrong for the Working Harbor Committee, via Capt. Mary Habstritt, lilacpreservationproject.org