June 29, 2018

9th Annual Mariner & Coast Guard Awards Dinner – August 7th, 2018

The public is cordially invited to join the Door County Maritime Museum, Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club and the Sturgeon Bay Coast Guard Committee in honoring all nominees for the Mariner Award and the Sturgeon Bay Area Coast Guard Person of the Year. The award presentation dinner takes place Tuesday, August 7, 2018, at the Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club. Social hour begins at 5:30 p.m. followed by the award dinner at 6:30 p.m.

Presented jointly by the Door County Maritime Museum and Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club, the Mariner Award recognizes individuals who have had a significant positive and lasting impact on the Door County maritime community. One living and at least one posthumous award are presented each year. All nominees are recognized and honored during the award ceremony.

The living recipient receives the Mariner Award trophy, a hand-crafted original work by noted Door County wood carver David Frykman. The posthumous award recipients receive special recognition at the dinner and their names are permanently displayed on the Mariner Award plaque that is prominently featured in the upper lobby of the Door County Maritime Museum in Sturgeon Bay. The award is intended to be very inclusive, recognizing nominees who have contributed significantly and positively to any segment of the local maritime community.

Receiving the Mariner of the Year Award last year was Steve Brunstrom, life-long mariner, marine surveyor and dedicated volunteer.

Last year’s posthumous honors went to local maritime legends:

  • Joseph Harris, Jr. – Founding father of the area’s boat building traditions and lighthouse keeper at Baileys Harbor Range Lights and the Dunlap Reef Light Station in Sturgeon Bay.
  • Minnie Hesh Cochems – Former assistant Keeper at Sherwood Point Lighthouse Station in Sturgeon Bay spending over 30 years tending the structures and grounds.

The living nominees for the 2018 Mariner Award are Martha Burress, Dennis Hickey, Bill Parsons, Ken Schmidke, William “Curly” Selvick, Leathem “Tim Stearn, Todd Thayse, Joel & Mary Ann Blahnik and Bill Schoendorf.

Nominees in the posthumous award category are Clifford B. Hart, Ingar Olsen, George K. Pinney, John Thenell, Arthur Zuehlke, Increase Claflin, Col. John Miller, W.F. Wickman and Asa Thorpe.

Sponsored by the City of Sturgeon Bay Coast Guard Committee, Greater Green Bay Council of the United States Navy League, Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club and Door County Maritime Museum, the Coast Guard Person of the Year award recognizes a local active duty Coast Guardsman who exemplifies the Coast Guard’s core values of Honor, Respect and Devotion to Duty. The honoree is selected from among nominees submitted by the three local Coast Guard units—USCGC Mobile Bay, Marine Safety Detachment Sturgeon Bay, and the Canal Station. All nominees are recognized and the winner announced at the award dinner.

This year’s nominees:

  • Chief Warrant Officer Gregory Tarker, USCGC Mobile Bay
  • Marine Science Technician 1st Class Harold Rissman, USCG Marine Safety Detachment
  • Petty Officer Robert Walsh, Coast Guard Canal Station Sturgeon Bay

For $43.00, dinner includes choice of entrée, baby red potatoes, chef’s mixed vegetables, tossed dinner salad with choice of dressing, rolls, beverage and dessert. Full cash bar available, tax and gratuity are included in the price.

Entrée choices include:

  • Chicken Marsala – Pan seared bone-in breast of chicken with caramelized onions and mushrooms topped with a homemade marsala cream.
  • Pork Chop – Grilled bone-in pork chop with apple bacon agro dolce.
  • Vegetable Terrine – Grilled Vegetables fused with garbanzo and flax served with a red pepper gastrique.

A portion of the price covers the cost of hosting and honoring the Coast Guard Person of the Year nominees. As a unique way to show appreciation for the dedicated service of local Coast Guardsmen and their families, the public is invited to “Sponsor a Coastie” to attend this special award event. The $43.00 donation enables a greater number of young Coast Guardspersons to attend the award dinner to see their peers honored by the local community.

Reservations are required. Please contact the Door County Maritime Museum at (920) 743-5958 no later than Monday, July 30, to make your reservation.

The Coast Guard Person of the Year and Mariner Award dinner is part of the Sturgeon Bay Maritime Week: A Salute to the United States Coast Guard celebration. This unique festival brings together many long-standing annual events along with new and exciting activities to celebrate Sturgeon Bay’s rich maritime heritage and honor local Coast Guard personnel and their families.

Information on additional Maritime Week events can be found on the Door County Maritime Museum’s website,

MEDIA CONTACT:             Carrie Dorski

                                                Marketing & Events Coordinator

                                                Door County Maritime Museum