This past spring while working on Gloucester’s Feast of Saint Joseph film project, I filmed Joe Virgilio making Virgilio’s Saint Joseph rolls and wrote a post for GMG about Virgilios. At that time, Al Bezanson, owner of the Green Dragon Schooner, shared that during Schooner Festival, Joe Virgilio welcomes the schooners with warm loaves of freshly baked bread as they sail into Gloucester Harbor.
Al provides more details:
Virgilio’s started donating bread to the visiting schooners two years ago, and it now threatens to become a popular new tradition. The first year Brett and Max Ramsey, in Brett’s high speed inflatable, met up with schooners as they entered the harbor and presented them with a loaf or two along with a pineapple. In some cases the bread was still warm from the oven. When that happened with Adventurer, out came the butter, and the bread was enjoyed in a flash. Last year Max and Dom Nesta made the deliveries, and more of the Sea Scouts may be handling it this year.”
In the photos Al provided, Green Dragon had just received a delivery in the outer harbor as she entered from Manchester.
I was so struck by the Virgilio’s generous, welcoming gesture and thought what better time to pass along Al’s story than the night before the Schooners begin to arrive. As Al points out, “When you get around schooner people you may hear them talking about the need to have extra butter aboard in Gloucester. This is a very big deal in fending off other ports that are vying for schooners that same weekend. Thanks Joe and the high speed Ramsey/Nesta delivery guys!”