Rockport Marine Park
Rockport Marine Park - a small harbor park with several historical landmarks, daytrip sailing cruises, and home to Andre the Seal
Rockport is a small, relatively remote village on the shore of Penobscot Bay, located between Rockland and Camden. Rockport sports a gorgeous little harbor, and a renowned art colony. Rockport used to be a working harbor, but today the harbor is dotted with pleasure boats. One of these pleasure boats is the famous Timberwind, a 70’ windjammer that moors in Rockport Harbor. The Timberwind offers 3 and 4 day cruises on Penobscot Bay and along the coast of Maine. The Timberwind offices are located in Rockport at the Rockport Marine Park.
The Rockport Marine Park has one boat lauch ramp, picnic tables, benches, outhouses, and several floats. Visitors can fish off the Harbor Master’s dock. Rockport Marine Park is also home to a memorial honoring the legendary Andre the Seal.
Andre was a harbor seal that spent summers in Rockport’s Harbor. Professional scuba diver, Harry Goodridge, found Andre in 1961, when the seal was just a pup. Goodridge assumed that the young seal had been abandoned by its mother. Goodridge kept Andre in a floating pen and taught the seal how to do tricks. These tricks eventually made Andre famous. However, Andre also caused a bit of raucous in the harbor, so Goodridge shipped the seal to the New England Aquarium in Boston during the winters. When Andre was released in the spring, the seal swam 150 miles north, home to Rockport. Everyone was surprised, yet Andre performed the same trip the next spring, and the next, until Andre’s return home became something of an event. Andre died in 1986. The statue that stands in Rockport Harbor was dedicated to Andre in 1978. He unveiled it himself.
In the 19th Century, Rockport was part of a thriving lime industry, and visitors can still see several old kilns on the waterfront – a set of drawings next to the kilns details their former functions – as well as a replica of a lime transporting locomotive.
As you stroll along the walking paths at the Rockport Marine Park, you will be treated with a fantastic view of one of Maine’s scenic harbors. Daily sailing cruises are also available with eco tours and gourmet sunset cruises in which you can enjoy Maine’s seafood cuisine and the beautiful views of Penobscot Bay all at the same time. For example, the cruise that sails off at 10:30 in the morning aboard the Schooner Heron will give you three hours of sailing on Maine’s coast plus a lobster roll lunch, a good value for around $55. Tthe 65’ Schooner Heron offers 3 trips daily out of the Rockport Marine Park. Call 207-236-8605 for schedules and fees.