“Winter Musings #2″: Thanksgiving Thoughts

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Hello All!  For our second edition of “Winter Musings”, I wanted to briefly talk about the idea of Thanksgiving, and how it undoubtedly relates to the Pride and the Riverboat Society.

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This idea of giving thanks is certainly not a new one, as is evident by the tons of harvest and thanksgiving festivals that occur near the mid to end of the year.  This is especially true for us here in the United States, where we not only commemorate the Native Americans’ kindness to some of the first settlers during the harsh New England winter in the wilderness, but also for everything we have truly been blessed to have in this incredibly wonderful country.

If you think about it, despite all the political gridlock and other issues that our nation has, we really do lead a pretty good life. Sure, we all encounter life’s difficulties, but chances are, we (hopefully) don’t have to worry about finding fresh water for the day or where our next meal will be. We have technology that makes our lives easier (almost too easy!), medical wizardry that keeps us healthy, and high-speed transportation that get’s us places in a jiffy.

And those things are definitely something to be thankful for. Many around the world (and in our own communities) don’t have even a few of these luxuries.  This is why, as we start the holiday season tomorrow with Thanksgiving, to be supportive of those wonderful organizations and businesses in our own community who care for those most in need.  Even if you don’t have much to give, even a few dollars makes a difference (and you get the satisfaction of knowing you helped someone today!).  Or, you can volunteer as well. That, too, is a great way to contribute to the betterment of your society.


The Riverboat Society would not be here today, after 25 years and many ups and downs, without the help and support of our own community. Those who saw a great public service and wanted to keep it going for future generations to enjoy as well. The Riverboat Society, in turn, gives back. Our mission actually is  to “increase tourism, economic development, and enhanced education regarding the history and ecology of the Susquehanna River and our region”, and to serve the community.

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When you come to a Pride event or cruise, you are supporting our community service efforts. We are most proud of offering all vets and active military free cruises on the Public Sightseeing Cruises. We offer a free monthly cruise to 120 vets from the Lebanon VA Hospital for over 20 years. We have discounted rates and cruises for our senior population. We offer a free non-denominational Sunday Morning cruise for all to attend for more than 20 years. We have worked with other non-profits (some of which include the Humane Society of Harrisburg and the Feel Your Boobies Foundation) to raise awareness for important issues.

There are so many more, but these are just some of the ways we help support the community who has done so much to help us.

And on this Thanksgiving Eve, I say THANK YOU, on behalf of the Board of Directors, staff, and crew of the Harrisburg Area Riverboat Society and the Pride of the Susquehanna. Without your unending support, we would not be one of only 6 remaining authentic paddle wheel riverboats left in the nation. And one that is purely for service.

Now that is pretty special!


And just in case you were wondering how the work on the boat is going, take a look at some of the photos throughout the post. They show the boat taken apart and ready to be worked on! We have a long winter ahead of us, but we are ready to get her back in ship-shape!

Andrew Ponti
Executive Director
Harrisburg Area Riverboat Society
Pride of the Susquehanna

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