How to be the hands and feet of Jesus Christ in this world is what New Horizons is all about. Please check out our website at We provide educational opportuinities for at-risk children in Southwest Florida. We are able to provide humanitarian aid to our Caribbean neighbors with our 68-foot cargo schooner, "Star of the Sea." The schooner is also used as a teaching tool for the "Call to Adventure" program that mentors young men at sea.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

July 24-July 29

With the storm gone we made plans to leave. I spent an afternoon learning more about the unique place that Great Inagua is with Capt. Fawkes as my guide. Our friend Alfred "Junior" Moss from Cat Island helped out in getting Customs to release the Kids Against Hunger food that is in their warehouse. I've decided to sail back to Florida at this time and Customs will hold the Estero UMC food in their warehouse until I return at the end of hurricane season (Nov.) After dodging a tropical storm and another on the way, safety concerns of vessel and crew have to be a priority in my planning. We set sail on a beautiful morning with a good weather forecast for the next 4 days!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

July 20-July 24

We arrived early in the morning after a long night of 10-12ft seas and high winds. After clearing customs in Mathew Town we anchored and went and checked on the 7 tons of food that was being held by customs. Returning to the boat our weather router informed us that a tropical wave was headed our way and we needed to seek shelter immediately. I was fortunate to meet Captain Stephen Fawkes, marine superintendent for Morton Salt and Mayor of Mathew Town. He had recently installed a 10,000 lb. anchor and mooring ball in Man O War Bay and we were welcome to use it. The following morning we put out our storm gear and rode out the storm when it arrived the following day.

July 18-July 20

A very windy ride across the Cacois Bank where we anchored up for the night at the Ambergris Cays. Leaving in the morning in 30 kts of wind made for an exciting reef crossing at the Fish Cays. I timed our arrival at Cap Haitien for 8 a.m. as we wanted to offload and leave by noon. The holding ground is notoriously bad in the harbor and the trade winds really come up hard in the early afternoon. I was able to contact the two ministries that we had supplies for and after going thru the crazy game of trying to clear customs into a corrupt country with no one in charge, we offloaded art supplies for Hosean Ministries and food for Mission Restoration du North. I have no pictures of the offload as me pulling a camera out would not have gone over well with the people of the port. It was a very long and stressful day and was capped off by the wind and seas building to very strong levels as we sailed to Great Inagua.

July 14-July 18

We are spending a couple days here in the Turks and Cacois waiting for weather before pushing on to Cap Haitien. While here I looked up old friends and made new ones. Bob, our host and the owner at the South Side Marina really made us feel at home for the two days we spent there. He has a beautiful facility and will handle a 7ft. draft at high tide. We also tried out a failed marina project that is an excellent hurricane hole if you're in this part of the world, email me for the coordinates!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

fish frenzy at thunderball cave

Here's a quick video taken in Thunderball Cave, Staniel Cay Exuma. No fish were harmed in the making of this video!

Sunken schooner at Farmer's Cay

July 8th-July14

We were all blessed during our short stay on Cat Island, the Moss family treated us with special local food and really made us feel at home! The Children at the Old Bight Mission Home are precious and very special. If you know of anyone looking to adopt a child please mention the kids at Old Bight! Upon leaving Cat Island we motorsailed to make easting for a couple days and then passed north of San Salvador, Crooked Island/Acklins, Samana, and the Plana's coming in on the south coast of Mayguana. High seas and a minor rigging problem sent us in at West Caicos and anchored up in Sapodilla Bay Providenciales where we cleared customs and renewed old friendships. Rigging problems are fixed and we are now waiting weather to cross to Cap Haitian where we will offload art supplies for the Hoesan ministries and deliver 27 boxes of food to Pastor Andre of Mission Restoration du North. We are encountering some customs issues for the 7 ton load of food for RMI ministries, please keep that in your prayers! Crew is doing well and taking a much needed day off! Blessings to all. We miss you uncle dave!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

3 July - 7 July

We have had a wonderful time here on Cat Island. On Sunday ship's chaplin David Ames gave an uplifting sermon at the Old Bight Children's home, we were all truly blessed by the children and Brother and Sister Moss. A delicious fish meal was servered after the service and then it was off for a much needed nap for the captain! The Moss's were off island Monday and Tuesday so the crew filled in and got the kids to a local basketball camp, Casey pitched in as a guest coach for Monday and would have kept going for the whole week if not for boat work to ready us for the next leg to Haiti. We will be leaving tomorrow 7/8 and heading North and East so as to gain the angle needed to ride the trade winds to Cap Haitian. After a short offload of art supplies for Hosean ministries and some food for Pastor Andre we will be sailing to Great Inauga for our 7 ton load of food for the Haitian town of Los Cayes on the south coast. We will post again when possible . Blessings to all. capt. bob

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Trip Log - June 25--July 3

The Star of the Sea, anchored at Little Farmer's Cay, Exumas

The first leg of our trip went well, with crew members being Capt. Bob Nichols, First Mate Adam Smith, Ship's Chaplain David Ames, and Second Mate Casey Delehanty. After a short rest and make-ready at Fiesta Key, we pushed across the Gulf Stream on the 27th of June. Gulf Stream crossing was uneventful, with a few rain squalls thrown in for excitement. David was able to catch his first barracuda under sail, and the crew's spirits improved with out eastward progression. After a beautiful full-moon sail across the Great Bahama Bank, we arrived in Chub Cay, Bahamas on Tuesday the 29th. After using a Jedi Mind Trick on the customs officer, we left for the Decca Channel between Andros Island and the Exuma chain. As we were approaching the Decca channel, David was able to catch half of his first yellowfin tuna, allowing a barracuda to keep the other half for lunch. We were also able to catch several Cerrial Mackerel, which made for a delicious lunch.

A one-day rest anchored at Piggy Beach at Big Major Spot was followed by a beautiful sail on the inside to Little Farmer's Cay, Bahamas. While in the Staniel Cay area, the crew was able to snorkel Thunderball Cave and spend a short time renewing friendships on the island. Our overnight in Little Farmer's was a treat, as we had dinner at the Farmer's Cay Yacht Club, being hosted by Mr. Roosevelt Nixon. The 60-mile sail to Smith Bay, Cat Island proceeded as planned, under a beautiful starlit sky until 3:30 AM, when a rare front from the Northwest came South far enough to make our lives quite interesting (read: sporty). An exhausted crew was happy to pull into Smith's Bay and Brother Junior Moss brought all the kids down to help with the cargo.

Preparation and Thanks

I would like to start this blog by recognizing those who have helped make this trip possible. Number one on that list is my wife, Ellen, whose love, patience, and understanding go above and beyond. Thank you honey!

The following is a list of those who have been instrumental in making this voyage possible. I apologize for anyone whom I have left off.

Rob and Christie Bectal - Bristol Canvas
Dave Parks - Marine Electronics
Todd Tally - AME Electronics
Gulf Marine Ways
PPG - Ammercoat
Wendell Crowe - Deka Batteries
Tecnautics Refrigeration
Tom at Domestic Custom Metal
Andy Soper - Kingston Sail Loft
Mike Markley - Morton Salt
Brian Hubert and Greg Wood - Ambassador Services
Pastor Howard Davies, Merritt Island Cavalry Church
Cox's Mobile Marine Service
Bob Foote
Capt Chas of the motor yacht Giga Byte
Chip and Lynne Shotwell
Capt. John Puig
Alan McCall
Mike Diaz
Capt. Doug Walker
Capt. Frank Gumpbert
Brookes Paul Jones and Biron Toss - Rigging Consultants
Vern the Rigger
Cal the Welder
Capt. Ed Hogan
Mike and Gray Swor
Jim Bandy - Port Supply
Debbie Rogan
Doug Pierce - Pierce Marine Repair
Jim McElvoy
John Wright
Molly Marine
Dr. Ed Dean
Rod's Performance Marine

And a special thanks to our last minute angels, Chris and Debbie Swain and Jim Van Artsdalen, who helped out with a final financial push.

Special thanks to all those who are praying for our safety and speedy return!