Shows "C"

All the journeys are safe ones. Time moves on to 1887, and Karl, age 15, is finishing his chores while Alma works around the house. Suddenly, the door bursts open and Gustav is helped in by Peter. It appears that a rope snapped, and many trees fell on him - breaking his arm in two places. The ship is loaded and ready to make its journey; however, there is no way that Gustav can go. Without him they will be one man short. Karl suggests they take him along; however, Alma is adamant that her son not go on a winter voyage. In reality, they do need his help, and Alma finally gives in. Karl can go with them. As Peter and Alma help Gustav to bed, the boy imagines what it must be like aboard a schooner. He is in ecstasy! He goes and tells the other sailors the news; however, they tease him unmercifully. Though he has sailed across the lake, he's never experienced a winter voyage. He's going to be a winter sailor now! On November 27, 1887, the Molly Doone sets sail once again. It appears that the ship is heavier than ever before and Peter wonders if it can carry all the trees; however, the crew assures him that everything should be fine. On November 30th just outside of Bailey's Harbour, Wisconsin, the ship is hit by a fierce winter storm with strong winds and blinding snow. The hatch covers blow off and water pours in. The trees wash overboard, and the ship tears apart. On December 8th Alma and Gustav arrive at the rescue hospital at Bailey's Harbour. They have taken the train and a short ferry ride there. Karl runs to his mother and grandfather. He survived the storm; unfortunately, Peter didn't. The other men come and try to comfort Alma telling her that they wouldn't have survived had it not been for Peter. Alma also learns that hundreds of trees washed up on the shore - all across the bay. Alma tells the other sailors to get rid of them. She never wants to see another Christmas tree again! However, the men have voted to load the trees on another available schooner and sail to Chicago saying that's what Peter would have wanted them to do. Karl, too, wants to go with them. They can make it to Chicago in two days. Alma is dead set against this, but Karl persists in trying to reason with her. Left alone with Gustav, Alma ruminates about the situation. She is angry, hurt, and upset about all that has happened. Gustav tries to tell her that he understands how she feels for he has lost a son just like she lost a husband. Alma finally relents. She will let Karl and Gustav set sail with the ship; however, she is coming with them. If the journey meant so much to her husband then she wants to experience it as well. On board the new schooner, Alma sails to Chicago with the men. On December 17th night, the ship pulls into Clark Street Harbour and Alma gets off the ship. A small Irish girl asks if the ship is the Christmas Schooner. They've all been waiting for it all week even though they heard it sunk up north. The little girl tells her that no one will believe that the ship wouldn't make it. Alma is amazed to see just how many people want one of the trees. She gives the girl a branch from one of the trees and tells the girl to let everyone know that yes, the Molly Doone went down, but that trees will be delivered this year and every year from up north. Come back tomorrow morning! The excited girl runs off. Gustav joins Alma as she recounts her conversation with the little girl. He then goes to bed. Left alone, Alma thinks about all her husband has done and all that she will continue to do. For the next 25 years she saw that the Christmas Schooner sailed into Clarke Street Harbour each and every Christmas season. The names of the schooners changed, names long forgotten by most. But what can't be and shouldn't be forgotten is the courage of the men who risked their lives and set sail on a lake, so others could know the joy of Christmas. MUSICAL NUMBERS 1. We All Have Songs 2. That's America 3. The Mummers Are Here 4. The Blessings of the Branch 5. The Letter 6. Another Season on the Water 7. When I Look at You 8. What Is It About the Water 9. The Christmas Schooner 10. Song of the Hungry Peasants 11. Winterfest Polka 12. That's What Loving Sons Are For 13. The Strudel Waltz 14. Hardwater Sailors 15. Questions