In April of 2014, as part of a learning experience about the Gulf Stream, Paul McManus and other students in Ms. Susan Schambach’s class wrote notes, sealed them in 13 wine bottles and worked with Captain Ken Upton from Wilmington to place the bottles in the Atlantic Ocean approximately 40 miles off the coast of North Carolina.
The bottle contained a note from Paul (now nine years old) and was discovered by nine-year-old Mélina Couvreur of Verton, France, on the Beach of Berck sur mer, North of France. Mélina’s discovery made the local media in France and the young lady’s family contacted Mrs. Schambach at Summit.
For the past three years Triad Academy at Summit School second graders have released drift bottles into the Gulf Stream off the coast of Wilmington, North Carolina. The fourth set of bottles (ten of them) will be released during students’ spring break in April 2016. The Drift Bottle Project is part of Oceans Unit study to emphasize the track of the Gulf Stream and how close it comes to the coastline of North Carolina.
Each student fills a glass wine bottle with a letter from the class, contact information, a return postcard and a Summit School pen. The bottles are sealed with a ring of bright red duct tape around the top. Thirty-four bottles have been released during the past three years. Much of the success of the project hinges on Captain Ken Upton of Gamekeeper Sportfishing in Wrightsville Beach, who deploys the bottles into the Gulf Stream approximately off our coast.