The Lowell Town Class was originally designed in 1932 as a safe children’s training boat. Today they are raced by Town Class Association enthusiasts in MA and RI.
The Landing School undertook to build three of these boats in the 2019-2020 school year but only one was completed due to COVID-19. The builds were approved by Ralph Johnson of Newbury, MA—representative of the Percival Lowell family. Mr. Johnson traveled to Maine to personally give POMONA the family Town Class brand.
POMONA, constructed of glued lapstrake plywood, is the first wooden “townie” built since 2004 and the only one ever completed by builders outside the Lowell family.
Owner/co-builder Nick Tonello chose the name POMONA as an homage to the shipbuilding history of the area. She is the second boat of her name to hail from Kennebunk. The first POMONA--registered by principal owner Simon Nowell and built by carpenter Joel Larrabee, Jr.—was the last vessel constructed by the shipyard of David Little at The Landing in 1827*.
POMONA’s namesake is an ancient Roman goddess of the grove—a wood nymph—associated with apples and the coming of Autumn.
*Ref: Barry, William E. _Sketch of an Old River_. Phoenix Publishing: West Kennebunk, 1993. Pages 21-23 & 67.
Photo by Rick Barkhuff of co-builders Nick Tonello, Kate Slocum and Sean Fawcett (Dean of The Landing School)