Renny has been an invaluable volunteer at The Barnacle for years. Early on, he spent many sweaty hours in the upstairs of the Barnacle Boathouse, helping the State Archaeologist identify and catalog the hundreds of nautical “artifacts” in left by the Commodore’s family in the Boathouse.
Renny, whose parents were founding members of The Coconut Grove Sailing Club, is a “student of history” and meticulously researches the nautical history of Coconut Grove and Biscayne Bay through archival newspaper articles and photographs. He is constantly surprising Park staff with new “finds” from the Barnacle’s past. Recently he spied a “chunk of something” in a spoil pile next to a trench leading to the Boathouse and with the TLC that only Renny can administer, uncovered a beautiful “Herreshoff Cleat.” Also, in typical Renny fashion, he mounted the beautiful artifact on a plaque and gave it to Park staff to display in the Park Office.
Renny’s volunteer activities at The Barnacle have left their mark throughout the Park. Crumbling shed doors have been restored; the “broken” barbecue grill fixed and spiffed up to showroom condition; workbench tops restored from surplus materials; and countless tools, machines, vehicles, trailers and the Park popcorn machine put back in working condition.
Down at the Boathouse, Renny lined up and delivered the boat cover for the boatyard skiff; assisted with the boatbuilding program; fashioned a new mooring harness for Egret and repaired her mooring fittings; personally fixed the boat dock when it began to collapse and provided countless hours of all-round help as well as countless tools. A true researcher and historian, Renny has put together manuals for all of the small craft under the care of the Barnacle Maritime Committee as well as manuals for all of the major power tools used in the Boathouse.
Renny is also quick to recognize the accomplishments of others, as he did when he fashioned a beautiful plaque and presented it to Mike Chapman for Mike’s work on behalf of The Barnacle and its historic waterfront. Most recently, Renny has spent hours cleaning up the hurricane destruction in the Boathouse and helping reassemble the Pavilion floor. Needless to say, when a repair need or a problem arises at the short-staffed Barnacle, the first words out of peoples’ mouths are, “Ask Renny!”