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​An Optimist on Long Island Sound

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​Here’s a ray of inspiration for anyone who cares about protecting and restoring our natural treasures. Twelve-year-old Justin Smith, an avid mariner, crossed the Long Island Sound in a small sailboat on October 20, 2012 to raise funds for NFWF’s Long Island Sound Futures Fund. Never having attempted a cross-Sound sail, he made the seven-mile trip in an Optimist, an eight-foot-long boat.

Justin had sailed the Sound for the past three years out of the Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club, where he’s a member of the race team. He decided to undertake the charitable project for his bar mitzvah, which celebrates, among other things, a personal responsibility to society. Raising funds for a project to restore the Sound is Justin’s worthy deed to acknowledge that responsibility. He's collected more than $4,000 from friends, family and other supporters.


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