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Single mama and her 4-year old sail with all-female crew, writing and photographing about environmental stewardship along the way.
Single mama and her 4-year old sail with all-female crew, writing and photographing about environmental stewardship along the way.
184 backers pledged $15,678 to help bring this project to life.
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$15,678

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We're thrilled to share with you the design for our t-shirts!
We're thrilled to share with you the design for our t-shirts!

We've just added a new reward - t-shirts with our crew motto. The common thread between our parenting, humanitarian and environmental goals have been summed up by many backers as badass. We think our backers our pretty badass too, and couldn't wait to share our new t-shirt with you!

                              *    *    *

As a single mom, I’ve felt lonely, tired, and fractured. I told myself, "This isn't the life I was supposed to live. This is not supposed to be my story.”

We're Ky and Tobin Creek from Asheville, NC.
We're Ky and Tobin Creek from Asheville, NC.

So I decided to create new experiences, rewriting a narrative I’d be proud to tell my son. It's about possibility, adventure, and giving back. It's about being a badass parent.

From living on a sailboat to instructing sea kayaking, I feel most alive on the water -- it's the place where I connect with the natural world and tap into my creativity. I want to share my love of water with my son, Tobin Creek. We will sail around the Virgin Island and serve the community as environmental stewards along the way.

We've teamed up with local youth groups in St. Thomas and kayaking outfitters to connect children with their watery backyards. As full-time island residents, these children are the future caretakers of the fragile island ecosystem. First, though, they must care enough about the water to want to protect it.

As a means to contribute to the awareness of the growing problem of Microplastics in our Earth’s oceans, we'll collect water samples during the expedition for National Geographic sponsored organization Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation. Invisible to the naked eye, microscopic pieces of plastic pose a devastating threat to the our waterways. We'll send samples back to the lab where they will become part of a comprehensive dataset used to effect change.

ASC's Microplastics by Nat Geo
ASC's Microplastics by Nat Geo

Join us in inspiring kids to take care of our seas and protecting our waterways.

DELIVERABLES

I contribute articles to Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and write a column titled Mountain Mama.
I contribute articles to Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and write a column titled Mountain Mama.

Through this project, I hope to nurture my writer's voice. My writing will focus on my relationship with my son as we sail, explore the fragile island ecosystem, and connect with locals. Throughout the journey, we'll be taking photos, video interviews, and journaling the trip itself. Highlights from each day will be shared on the blog. The stories will be woven into a narrative at the end (estimated 30 to 40 pages), which one day may become a book.

ITINERARY

We'll spend 28 days at sea, and will sail to these islands:

  • St. John's Island (national park status protects two-thirds of the island). Tagging along with park officials will give insight into local best conservation practices. 
  • St. Thomas where we're working with the Family Resource Center to take grade-school kids on field trips, including kayaking, snorkeling, and beach hikes. 
  • Tortola, we'll organize beach clean up days.
  • Other destinations include BVI National Parks such as Peter Island, Dead Chest, Salt Island, Great Dog and Virgin Gorda where we'll snorkel and hike the islands. We'll be collecting water samples along the way and sending them back to the lab, where they'll be analyzed under microscopes for plastic content.

OUR STORY

I've taken Tobin on adventures since he was just a few months old.
I've taken Tobin on adventures since he was just a few months old.
I love experiencing the outdoors through his eyes, finding joy and excitement everywhere.
I love experiencing the outdoors through his eyes, finding joy and excitement everywhere.
His silly sense of humor makes it easy to make friends.
His silly sense of humor makes it easy to make friends.
Tobin is my favorite adventure partner. We make the best of any weather!
Tobin is my favorite adventure partner. We make the best of any weather!
We're ready for a bigger adventure. I've taken courses and earned the sailing certifications required to skipper a boat.
We're ready for a bigger adventure. I've taken courses and earned the sailing certifications required to skipper a boat.

OUR CREW:

The incredible community that has helped me survive as a single mama will be the same friends who will become part of our crew.

Meghan Rolfe, a professional photographer in Asheville, is responsible for most of these gorgeous photos.
Meghan Rolfe, a professional photographer in Asheville, is responsible for most of these gorgeous photos.
Sarah Thomas spent a season crewing on a sailboat that sailed between St. Thomas and St. John. She'll contribute her sailing expertise and a wealth of local knowledge to the project.
Sarah Thomas spent a season crewing on a sailboat that sailed between St. Thomas and St. John. She'll contribute her sailing expertise and a wealth of local knowledge to the project.
Maya Blum grew up around sailboats in the San Francisco bay area and is an experienced whitewater kayaker and portrait photographer (mayablum.com).
Maya Blum grew up around sailboats in the San Francisco bay area and is an experienced whitewater kayaker and portrait photographer (mayablum.com).
Maya captured Tobin's fascination with water. She's enthusiastic about sharing her love of water and helping to document the adventure.
Maya captured Tobin's fascination with water. She's enthusiastic about sharing her love of water and helping to document the adventure.

WHY GIVE?

By funding this project, you become part of our crew, embarking on this journey with us. Your involvement begins at the time of the pledge and continues, really, indefinitely. You will always be part of our crew. When you give, we hear this: the backer (YOU) believes in our sense of adventure and creativity. The value of that investment FAR outweighs the monetary generosity of your pledge.

BACK OUR BLOG AND VIDEO DISPATCHES:

By becoming a backer for our writing and photography, you'll not only have access to blog posts and video dispatches, you'll be able to track our route and receive special backer-only updates, photos, and sneak peeks of the narrative. Most importantly though, you join us in the process of creating art. Thank you -- we are so grateful for any contribution you can make!

Being on the water reveals moments of awe, that if we let seep into our being, can change us.
Being on the water reveals moments of awe, that if we let seep into our being, can change us.

BUDGET:

What happens if we reach our goal? We will be so grateful!

Here's where the money goes:

Water Activities for Local Kids: $1000 (includes cost of snorkeling and sea kayaking with kids growing up in poverty on St. Thomas)

Charter fees: 8086

Internet:          1000

Moorings:        900

Fuel:                600

Insurance:       400

Other:              697 (cruising tax, National park fee, viser, dinghy fuel and cell phone)     

Kickstarter Fees/ Amazon Payment Fees: 1400

Reward Costs: 1527

* We'll pay for our own airline tickets and provisions for the journey.

HOW IT WORKS:

Backing a kickstarter project is just like buying things through Amazon. Browse the backer levels to your right and when you find the right reward for you, click the green "back this project" button on the top right of this screen. You will be taken to the next page where you can enter your pledge amount and select the reward you want. Then the familiar checkout process and. . . you're done!

MAKE YOUR OWN REWARD!

Don't see what you're looking for? Send us an email at kydelaneywriting@gmail.com and let us know what you have in mind!

Risks and challenges

The sailboat has been reserved, I've received my charter certification, and our contacts in the Virgin Islands are excited about the project! We hope for fair winds, but our sailing will be subject to the weather, and we may have to wait out squalls or storms.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    CABIN BOY/ CABIN GIRL: Receive a special behind-the-scenes photograph emailed from the islands straight to your inbox!

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    SWAB: A handwritten postcard from me and the crew sent from the Virgin Islands!

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    14 backers
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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    CONNECT A KID TO THEIR WATERY BACKYARD: Sponsor a St. Thomas child living in poverty for an afternoon of kayaking and snorkeling. You’ll receive a personal thank-you from the child you sponsor and a picture of them kayaking straight to your inbox.

    Join us in inspiring kids to lead active lives and to take care of the environment. Provide kids with a day that stirs curiosity and fuels a desire to get outside.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    DECKHAND: A handwritten postcard from me and the crew sent from the Virgin Islands AND a pack of 6-notecards featuring photos from our journey!

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    25 backers
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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    TICKET FOR ONE TO BARN PARTY: Saturday, November 14th starting at 6 p.m. Just 25 minutes from downtown Asheville, the barn is in lovely Marshall, NC. BBQ, live music, square dancing & more!

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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    FIRST MATE: A comfy Badasery T-shirt AND a postcard sent from the crew during their journey straight to your mailbox. Each shirt is hand printed by using our Badassery logo!

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    MATE: A PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox AND a handwritten postcard from me and the crew sent from the Virgin Islands AND a pack of 6-notecards featuring photos from our journey!

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    18 backers
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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    TICKET FOR TWO TO BARN PARTY: Saturday, November 14th starting at 6 p.m. Just 25 minutes from downtown Asheville, the barn is in lovely Marshall, NC. BBQ, live music, square dancing & more!

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    3 backers
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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    SECOND MATE: Receive an invite to our welcome home low country boil (shrimp, corn, sausage and potatoes) in Asheville, NC and hear firsthand about our trip. The lady pirates will dish up the grub with a few island twists and regale you with tales from the high sea. A trip video will be shown AND a PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox.

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    Limited 5 backers
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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Anne Bonny: Receive a print of Pirate Mama, our logo designed by local Asheville artist Phil Cheney AND a PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox.

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    15 backers
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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    CREW: A framed 5 x 7 photograph from the journey (your choice from 10 photos), autographed by the crew.

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    1 backer
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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    MASTER OF LOGISTICS: Receive a print of Pirate Mama, our logo designed by local Asheville artist Phil Cheney AND a framed photograph from the Islands. Handmade local wood frames paired with Meghan Rolfe's award-winning photography make for a timeless masterpiece AND a PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox.

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    Limited 4 backers
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    Pledge $600 or more About $600

    GEAR SPONSOR – Want to promote outdoor or sailing –specific gear? The lady pirates will model clothing or gear and model clothing or gear and Tobin will show off kid-specific products. Whether you want us to promote sailing shoes, PFDs, or clothing, we’ll take photos of the crew and Tobin as we sail and on land for your website and catalogue. We’ll also guest blog for your company’s blog or website about your product.

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    Limited 0 backers
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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    PIRATE MAMA: A Phil Cheney original painting of the Pirate Mama logo. Artist's discretion, either a 4 x 3 or 4.5 x.3.5 painting to bring the magic of the islands into your home. Backers at this level will also receive a PDF of the narrative of our journey straight to your inbox.

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    0 backers
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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    LEAD SPONSOR – SPONSOR A KAYAKING TOUR - We'll wear your company logo on t-shirts or hats while we take children from the Virgin Islands kayaking and photograph the kids holding a banner with your company's logo on it for photographs. We'll give you a shout out in the blog about the day (posted on Blue Ridge Outdoors' website, with over 300,000 readers from Baltimore to Atlanta) recognizing you as sponsoring a day of connecting kids to their watery backyards. We'll also write a blog and send a video and photographs for you to post on your own blog or newsletter. We'll also include you in media releases and articles about the kayaking tour.

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    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    MAJOR SPONSOR – SPONSOR OUR WATER SAMPLES - We'll put your company logo on our t-shirts or wear your company’s apparel each time we collect water samples. We’ll write a blog (posted on Blue Ridge Outdoors' website, with over 300,000 readers from Baltimore to Atlanta) recognizing you as a sponsor for the water collection samples, along with photos of the crew wearing your logo! We'll also take a video and photographs of the water sampling process for you to post on your company's blog or website. We'll include you in media releases and articles we write about the water sample collection aspect of the project.

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    ENGINEER: When you back at this level, you get to pick what we write about and photograph for a day and you'll be mentioned in the blog post. Pick any topic that interests you about the islands. Ask anything you'd like about our experience sailing. You name it, I'll write it! We'll even give you a shout out in the blog post, thanking you as a muse AND a PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox

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    Reward no longer available 4 backers
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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    MASTER GUNNER: Are you an aspiring photographer? Award-winning photographer Meghan Rolfe will spend an hour with you, answering your photography questions, reviewing your portfolio and giving you tips on how to capture that perfect shot AND a PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    NAVIGATOR: Have you ever wanted to be a travel writer? Back at this level, and Ky Delaney will spend an hour, either providing feedback and direction on your existing work or providing tips on how to pick up your pen and get started. Available to meet in person within one-hour of Asheville or via Skype AND a PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox

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    Reward no longer available 2 backers
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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    GRUB FOR YOU AND YOUR MATES: Let us host a low country boil for you and 12 friends at your house. Sit back and relax while we do the cooking, sharing tales of the high seas. Will dish up boils within one hour of Asheville. Host will also receive a PDF of the narrative of our journey sent straight to your inbox.

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    Reward no longer available 4 backers
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Funding period

- (30 days)