21155
Isles of Shoals
The Star Island Experience
Learn the story of Star Island, one of the nine Isles of Shoals off the New Hampshire coast. Take seaside art classes, visit historic sites and discover the magic of this idyllic place.
Rating (5)
Program No. 21155RJ
Length
7 days
Starts at
899
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7 days
6 nights
17 meals
6 B 5 L 6 D
Getting There
See travel details and required documents
DAY
1
Registration, Orientation, Dinner, Isles History, Chapel
Star Island
D
The Star Island Conference Center

Activity note: Hotel check-in from 3:00pm. In this program, each of us can custom-tailor our own schedule of activities, choosing among offerings on Star Island. We can attend a lecture or a workshop, or simply relax in a rocking chair enjoying the sea view. The activities described are typical daily options. Travel between buildings can involve walking distances of up to a quarter-mile on boardwalks, over uneven ground, on rocks and on paths.

Afternoon: Upon arrival to the dock on Star Island, it's a short walk up the front lawn to the hotel, where you will enter the lobby to check-in. After you have your room assignment come to the Road Scholar table in the lobby to register with the program staff and get your name-tag as well as other important information, and to learn when and where the Orientation session will take place. This orientation will involve logistics, safety guidelines and emergency procedures. We'll join in the Star Island afternoon social hour tradition throughout the week. Soft drinks and hors d'oeuvres will be provided. If you wish, please bring your own adult beverages for consumption at these social hours (or in your rooms.) Alcohol is not sold on Star Island, so please consider this when packing.

Dinner: In the hotel dining room, we will enjoy a family-style dinner featuring home style cooking of new and classic dishes, coffee, tea, water and milk.

Evening: Meet with your program staff and fellow participants to learn about Road Scholar on Star Island. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will discuss roles and responsibilities, and answer questions. Our options then include joining a historian who will tell us about four centuries of life on the nine hauntingly beautiful Isles of Shoals. We’ll learn about the fishing era when cod fueled the settlement of New England, and when the Isles of Shoals was the busiest spot in the New World. We’ll can hear legends of pirates, shipwrecks, and ghosts and shipwrecks on the islands. We can then walk to an historic 200-year old chapel for a candlelight service. Over the years, people from many countries have taken part in this tradition and have carried away the memory of a quietly impressive experience.

DAY
2
Nature Walks, Workshops, Shoals History
Star Island
B,L,D
The Star Island Conference Center

Activity note: The activities described are typical daily options. What is actually available each day depends on special opportunities and local circumstances.

Breakfast: Early morning coffee is available daily on the hotel porch. In the hotel dining room, the breakfast buffet offers a variety of choices from a hot specialty dish of the day to oatmeal, cold cereal, fruits, bagels, toast, water, milk, juice, tea, coffee.

Morning: A special meeting of our Road Scholar group will outline the highlights of our options for the week, including lectures, workshops, entertainment and resources. Our options for this morning include taking a bird walk with our Island Naturalist, to catch sights of many species of birds, whose time of peak activity is early morning. The swimmers among us may want to join the Polar Bear Group for a morning dip in the ocean.

Lunch: In the hotel dining room, we will have a family-style meal with different daily offerings ranging from soup and sandwiches to Mac-and-Cheese, along with water, tea, coffee and milk.

Afternoon: We have the option to learn about tidal processes, explore intertidal zones, and observe the marine organisms found along the shore with a local expert. We also have the opportunity to attend one of the workshops offered on Star Island, with past ones ranging from hand-tinting photographs to creating outdoor sun prints. This year will offer a completely new set of workshops. Afterwards, we can enjoy the daily Star Island social hour.

Dinner: Hotel family-style meal.

Evening: Take this opportunity for personal exploration to see and do what interests you most from a list of several options. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions, for instance, attending a lecture on climate change.

DAY
3
Sustainability, Lecture, Historic Play
Star Island
B,L,D
The Star Island Conference Center

Activity note: The activities described are typical daily options. What is actually available each day depends on special opportunities and local circumstances.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet meal.

Morning: We have the opportunity this morning to take a behind-the-scenes look at Star Island’s facilities, including New England’s largest off-grid solar array, and learn about and discuss the Isles of Shoals environment and sustainability practices for the future.

Lunch: Hotel family-style meal.

Afternoon: Our options for after lunch may include an outdoor watercolor painting class or a lecture on New England maritime history. We will later enjoy the daily Star Island social hour.

Dinner: Hotel family-style meal.

Evening: We have the chance to perform or participate as an audience member in the charming tradition of an historic play on Star Island.

DAY
4
Geology, Workshops, Historic Program
Star Island
B,L,D
The Star Island Conference Center

Activity note: The activities described are typical daily options. What is actually available each day depends on special opportunities and local circumstances.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet meal.

Morning: We have the option this morning to take a naturalist-led walk of the geology of the Isles of Shoals. We’ll learn about the fascinating processes that have shaped the Isles of Shoals into the islands they are today.

Lunch: Hotel family-style meal.

Afternoon: This afternoon, we have the chance to attend one of the lectures or workshops offered on Star Island. Afterwards, we will enjoy the daily Star Island social hour.

Dinner: Hotel family-style meal.

Evening: Tonight, we can explore four centuries of life on the nine stark and hauntingly beautiful Isles of Shoals through a series of stunning historic photographs in an evening history program.

DAY
5
Water Production, Botany, Lobsters
Star Island
B,L,D
The Star Island Conference Center

Activity note: The activities described are typical daily options. What is actually available each day depends on special opportunities and local circumstances.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet meal.

Morning: We can choose to learn about water use on Star Island, investigate the environmental justice of clean and accessible water, and explore the ties between water and food production. We may also take a workshop on water accessibility and Star Island’s water treatment and distribution facilities, including the use of reverse osmosis to produce potable water.

Lunch: Hotel family-style meal.

Afternoon: One option for this afternoon offers an exploration the flora of the Isles of Shoals and discussion of edible and medicinal plants brought by colonists with a botany walk offered by a naturalist. We will then enjoy the daily Star Island social hour.

Dinner: Hotel family-style meal.

Evening: Tonight, we can learn about mystery, murder, and mayhem at the Isles of Shoals from a local historian. More than 125 years ago, two women were murdered on Smuttynose Island. A third woman survived the violence and the story she told scandalized the nation. We’ll revisit the crime and decide for ourselves whether the man convicted for the murders — based solely on circumstantial evidence and his own bizarre behavior — was really responsible for the tragic deaths on Smuttynose Island.

DAY
6
Graveyard Visit, Museum, Marine Lab, Show
Star Island
B,L,D
The Star Island Conference Center

Activity note: The activities described are typical daily options. What is actually available each day depends on special opportunities and local circumstances.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet meal.

Morning: This morning, we have the opportunity to visit Star Island's graveyards with the museum curator on a spooky and historical adventure. We can also choose to attend an enticing workshop or lecture.

Lunch: Hotel family-style meal.

Afternoon: Today we can visit the Vaughn Cottage Museum to learn of the Shoals’ famous resident poet, Celia Thaxter. Or we can choose to learn about the marine biology of the island at the marine lab and explore the touch tanks featuring local sea critters like sea stars, urchins and lobsters. We can then partake in an ice-cream social. Afterwards, we can enjoy the daily Star Island social hour.

Dinner: Hotel family-style meal.

Evening: On our final night, we can attend a rousingly entertaining staff talent show, featuring a number of musical acts and skits, and culminating in a performance by the chorus.

DAY
7
Program Concludes
Star Island
B

Activity note: Hotel check-out is by 8:00 a.m.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet meal. This concludes our program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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