The Norgoma, What is really being saved?


by Sandra Hollingsworth.

In a short three months, the enhancements that have taken place are impressive. Those visiting the ship will notice fresh exterior paint with the restored yellow trim, increased number of visitors, film production, weddings, new interactive displays that enhance the overall experience and a new board comprising of young individuals. This grand lady has a new spirt.

Today the argument is not about saving or not saving the Norgoma, but allowing the new board which is comprised of young people between the ages of 25 to 40, some time to prove that there could be a positive future for the ship. City Council should not squash the enthusiasm of young people that are passionate about a community cause, instead embrace and support their interest.

Isn’t council trying to engage young people in solving community issues? The purpose of the “Community Adjustment” report approved by City Council in the spring was to develop a multifunctional plan for the broader community as a whole. Within the plan it clearly states that the mandate is to “stop the bleeding” or “exiting” of the city’s young and listen to their ideas.  Council has stated often that the young people of the community should play a role in shaping the future of the city and encourage their participation in solutions. Therefore, if this is a value and belief of council, an extension of one year should be granted to allow the new young board to continue with the improvements, carry out their vision and finish their strategic plan.  Discounting the hard work and creative ideas of this group may result in a negative backfire. Instead of discouraging, council should encourage the future generation. Not showing support may prevent them from deepening their roots further into the community.

Not allowing the young board to complete the strategic plan and vision sends an improper message. The message, not intentionally, is that the opinion, efforts, and energy of the young really does not matter. Is this what Council wants to be known for? Providing an extension is not about saving the Norgoma, but allowing the young Board of Directors to speak. Before the final judgement is served and their voice is silenced, let’s watch carefully what unbelievable possibilities could happen.

For more information contact:

Sandra Hollingsworth

City Councillor Ward 2



  1. Would make a great dive site, would attract a lot of divers to the area. It would cost to have it cleaned and to get the permits to sink it. There was a movement to have it sunk before it became a museum. It worked for tobermory ON.

  2. This: “The message, not intentionally, is that the opinion, efforts, and energy of the young really does not matter.”—writer.

    Your city is dying. You can see this from the American side. Like the American “Rust Belt” during the 70s and 80s. And your young are leaving in droves. The bright lights of Toronto and Montreal and the rejuvenited American lake coast beckon. Aggressively.

    Let the young have a try. Give them status as stake holders.

    Or watch them leave.

    And the lights go out.

    One by one.

  3. All artifacts don’t have to be pretty or cute. Artifacts allow the mind to see and think, like great art. It sounds like there are art lovers out there that only love paintings like cats or puppies with big eyes, or anything sweet and cute.
    It sounds like something is happening to charge up some young people with imagination and vision. Lets give them a chance to create an attraction for families to bring the kids down to the waterfront, even if only to go aboard for an ice cream cone. A family outing. The city needs to feed kids with possibilties and imagination. Northern Ontario needs that. Canada needs that. The world needs that.

  4. Keep it, but not where it is. It needs to be moved out of that spot as it is a huge eyesore that needs hundreds of thousands of dollars to restore. How about the large vacant lot beside Purvis marine where the old tank farm was? They have been doing doing extensive soil sampling there lately for some reason. Anyone know why??

  5. I think its too little too late for the Norgama. It is taking up valuable space in the marina not too mention, it is ugly. The city charges $22 per foot on a monthly basis for any boats taking up space in the marina. At 188 feet long, the Norgama’s slip fee is $4136 per month or $49,632 per year. I doubt the Norgama has been paying this, not to mention the amount of pollution the ship is adding to the waters. The Norgama needs to go. Maybe not out of the Sault but definitely out of the current marina. Like Jan said, they had years to invest and try and get this relic to be successful but they failed. The only reason they have “young blood” running the museum is because the previous members who ran the museum know that its a venture destine to sink. Let the Norgama sail one last time, away from the marina, forever!

    • Never saw that marina more than half full at the best of times…There is precious little to attract anyone to that area in the first place so lets pull out all the rest and grass it over.. That dumb Bondar tent is as much an eyesore as anything else….

    • This group that are working at it now are all new people with fresh new ideas, not the same old set of folks that were at the helm before.. These new people are actually doing fresh things and creating a new atmosphere in and around the old girl.. The city isn’t paying one cent towards maintaining it now and if these people can keep it going and growing let them have a chance, don’t just shoot it down..The mayor doesn’t always have to get his own way in everything..

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