Around Lake Michigan

The Search for Sustainable Civilizations. A Thousand Miles in a $400 Hobie Cat.


In September 2009, Dan Kelly started production of Around Lake Michigan, Search for Sustainable Civilizations.  Dan and the 16 foot catamaran Hello World sailed 300 miles, querying locals about the emerging survivable future. This first expedition was a unequivocal success, demonstrating that 1) a low impact documentary expedition is feasible 2) the fragments of sustainable civilizations are everywhere.

From May – August of 2010, join Dan and Hello World as they sail the entire perimeter of the Big Lake – over 1000 miles!

Built in 1979 by the Hobie Company (Oceanside, California), Hello World was purchased by Dan and his nephew Patrick in May 2009 for $400. The 2 month restoration of the 30 year old catarmaran included a rough estimate of the associated environmental impact based on time, money and waste generated. Though sailboats have a small footprint in transit, building them requires big footprint petroleum products and metals. Since impact estimating tools are not readily available to the general public, Dan devised his own carbon cost methodology, inspired by the carbon cost of jet flight.

Hello World is equipped with wilderness camping gear, snorkeling equipment and a portable production kit based on the Canon Vixia HFS10, Apple’s Macbook Pro and Final Cut Pro Suite, Adobe’s Production Premium Suite and open source inspired software. Wireless internet connection is enabled by Verizon® Mifi and the Apple iPhone. A Larrivée parlor guitar completes the ensemble. Update (09-13-09) guitar returned to base. Update (10-06-01) guitar is on the 2010 expedition.

The Director and Principle Personality of Around Lake Michigan is Dan Kelly. Dan enjoys dual citizenship in the People’s Republic of Brooklyn and beautiful Beulah, Michigan. The primary collaborators for the 2009 journey were Producer Gretchen Eichberger of Elberta, Michigan, Technical Advisor Kai Schwarz of Seattle, Washington and Fabrication Specialist Patrick Kelly of Bear Lake, Michigan. Other collaborators included corporations like Apple® Computer, non profit organizations and of course the trans sentient global life support system.

The 2010 collaborator team is expanding to support robust social outreach.

The schedule will be updated in transit with destinations about 3 days in advance. Suggestions and invitations are welcome – Around Lake Michigan can even visit your school! If an adequate trailer is not available, Hello World can be disassembled and fit in a large cargo van.

Call for details.
Dan Kelly 231 882-0460

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4 Responses to Around Lake Michigan

  1. the next one you post everyone can see…

  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention On Desire » Blog Archive » Around Lake Michigan --

  3. ericmsteen says:

    Hello, I am teaching a class called Art and Social Contexts at the Ox-Bow School of Arts in Saugatuck, MI. The class is about making socially engaged art that is related to place and the social context of a site. For part of the class, students will learn about the endangered Saugatuck Dunes. I was curious if you would like to meet the class on the beach? We will be in session July 19-29. I will call the number listed again, but as of now, the mailbox is full.

  4. Eric,

    I’d love to meet your class on the beach. I’ll be in Saugatuck June 22 and 23. Sorry about the voicemail being full, try texting me. In July I’ll likely be on the coast of Wisconsin.

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