Jamaica Plain Bethel Math and Science Scholars Join Save the Harbor for Swimming on Spectacle Island

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Twenty-nine kids from Jamaica Plain-based nonprofit Bethel Math and Science Scholars recently set sail to Spectacle Island as part of Save the Harbor/Save the Bay’s free All Access Boston Harbor program.

Bethel Math and Science Scholars joined Save the Harbor/Save the Bay for a free All Access Boston Harbor trip to Spectacle Island.

In total seven organizations brought 260 kids to Spectacle Island on Aug. 3.

The groups gathered in the Leader Bank Pavilion in Boston’s Seaport where Save the Harbor’s Historian, David Coffin, told kids about the island's history. Coffin spoke about how Spectacle Island was a dumping ground for Boston’s trash, burning continuously for more than a decade. Today the island is now the most popular destination in the Boston Harbor Islands National & State Park.

“This is one my favorite stories,” said Coffin to the gathered groups. “You can be a flaming pile of trash for ten years and you can still turn your life around.”

On most trips to Spectacle, the youth break into groups to explore the beach and hike to the top of the north drumlin for the spectacular views of the harbor. However, when the weather is hot and the tide is high, they just can’t wait to hit the water.

To beat the heat, some kids swam in the clean, cool water of Boston Harbor under the watchful supervision of four DCR’s lifeguards. Others caught crabs and fish from the pier or searched for the “Treasures of Spectacle Island” with Save the Harbors program staff, collecting shells and sea glass, which they shared with each other before returning them to the beach where they belong.

“Our free programs give kids and families who might not otherwise have the opportunity to experience these beautiful natural resources firsthand," said Save the Harbor/Save the Bay’s Executive Director Chris Mancini. “We are proud to share our spectacular harbor, beaches and islands with them.”