She’s striking, colorful and unique.  “Visitors really love the boat – she’s really something to look at,” says Jennifer White-Dobbs of the Connecticut River Museum.  “She’s like a floating museum but very hands-on.” 

This is the second season that Onrust has worked with the Essex destination. 

It’s a historic reproduction of a Dutch yacht captained by Adriaen Block who explored these waters in the 1600s. 

“This vessel connects us to the earliest documented human use and exploration of this area which is pretty awesome,” says Captain Dan Thompson. 

Along with a walk through a companion exhibit, a ride on the boat is an educational experience – one that Kristine McMahon shared with her two kids. 

“We live right in Killingworth and you never know what’s right in your own backyard,” she says.

Onrust is gearing up for the beautiful fall season.  There are great opportunities to see the foliage and also a very special aerial show that takes place every autumn. 

“September is  always a great opportunity for us to take sunset cruises and see the swallows,” says White-Dobbs.

“They congregate in the sky and it looks like a tornado or cloud of birds,” explains Thompson.  “I think of it as a biological fireworks display made of birds.” 

He shares stories and allows visitors to learn the ropes – literally – to really experience Onrust.  He even allows folks to steer the boat, using the tiller. 

“There aren’t a lot of ways for the public to get on the water on the river,” he says, noting a tour is a great opportunity to see the shores.

So, take a scenic trip back in time. 

“Just seeing the sites, the sea air, the historical boat,” says McMahon.  “This boat is special because she’s connected to the river’s story and she’s a very distinct vessel,” says White-Dobbs. “She doesn’t look like anything else you see on the river.”

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