Over one hundred people enjoyed a two-hour cruise out of New Bedford on the 85-foot MV Cuttyhunk for the annual Charles A. R. Pickles Memorial Cruise on Saturday evening.
The event’s proceeds go to the Charles A. Pickles Beacon of Light Scholarship Fund at Community Boating of New Bedford, which offers scholarships to children who want to learn how to sail. The event also donates to the Beverly Yacht Club’s junior sailing program. Charles A.R. Pickles was a sailing instructor at the yacht club for many years.
“This event brings so many people together in Charles’ memory,” said Diane Bondi-Pickles, Charles’ mother. Charles lost his life suddenly in 2006 in a skateboarding accident.
Attendees included friends, classmates, relatives and neighbors of Charles and some who never knew him.
“Charles was one of my culinary students,” said Michael Petitbon, who came from Cumberland, RI with his family. “He was one of my most talented students and fun to be around,” said Petitbon.
“I knew him through friends,” said Peter LePage of Dartmouth, who brought a group with him on the cruise.
“I didn’t know him, but I support the cause … inner city kids learning to sail a boat sounds like a great idea to me,” said Zoriada Bohn of Acushnet.
“We host this cruise to celebrate the things that were most important to Charles which were family, friends, good food and being on the water,” said Bondi-Pickles. “We don’t do a silent auction or sell T-shirts … this is just about enjoying the company of good people in a beautiful setting.”
Pickles was the son of Marion Town Clerk Ray Pickles, and many of the attendees work at the Marion Town House.
“Believe it or not, every year we’ve had a beautiful evening,” said Bondi-Pickles, who claimed that it was Charles who saw to the weather.
By Joan Harnett-Barry