Virtual fundraiser raises $105,000 for Sail MV


Sail Martha’s Vineyard’s July 9 Virtual Seafood Buffet and Auction and Support Sail MV campaign raised more than $105,000 toward its $200,000 goal, according to a press release. These funds will be used to maintain the organization’s mission to make sailing available to all.

“We couldn’t have our big party on the harbor like we do every year, so we went online and invited our loyal supporters to join together from the comfort of their own homes,” Sail MV board president Peggy Schweir said.

Sail MV is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting and perpetuating Martha’s Vineyard maritime heritage, culture, and skills through programs for Island residents. The Seafood Buffet and Auction is one of the nonprofit’s biggest fundraisers of the year.

The event featured a video created by board member and ESPN producer John Wilson that shared stories of the organization’s sailing and rowing programs. Sail MV youth sailors were also invited to tell stories about their experiences on the water.

The silent auction portion of the evening brought in more than $20,000. Auction items were donated by V. Jaime Hamlin at Home, Carnegie Blair Designs, the Chappaquiddick Wood Co., Dean Racicot, Mike Mackenty, Gannon & Benjamin Marine Railway, Alison Shaw, Tom Dunlop, Sail Magic Carpet, and Oris Watches.

The online show was broadcast on MVTV, and on Sail MV’s YouTube channel.  

“It is gratifying to receive so much financial support, but we still need to raise more,” Sail MV executive director John Kettlewell said. “With our loyal supporters, I am confident we will be there for the Island kids next summer.”

This event is part of the organization’s virtual fundraising campaign, Support Sail MV. While the regular youth and adult summer sailing programs have been suspended this summer due to COVID-19, Sail MV is offering one-on-one private sailing lessons for community members.