Bruce Fernald

The lobstering industry isn’t known for its glitz and glamour, but one of Maine’s own has a knack for brushes with celebrity.  Bruce Fernald once answered a casting call for “lobstering types”—as a sixth generation fisherman, Bruce could scarcely fit the bill better. He got the part—it was for an Old Milwaukee beer commercial—and though it was his first and last foray into professional acting, his claims to fame didn’t end there.

In 1985, he took singer Bonnie Raitt out fishing, and in 2004, Bruce appeared as the main character in Trevor Corson’s bestseller, “The Secret Life of Lobsters”—almost a decade after Bruce had hired Trevor as a sternman on his boat, Double Trouble. The two of them appeared together on CBS Sunday Morning that year, and in an unrelated occurrence in 1986, Bruce was filmed for a segment of “Extreme Crustaceans” on the Travel Channel.

As exciting as his lobstering days have been, Bruce, now 63, says his best lobstering memory is fishing with his wife before they got married. With his current boat Barbara Ann–named after his wife, per Maine tradition—Bruce fishes out of Islesford. After hauling for 42 years, Bruce says, “It’s lots of hard work, but it’s good to be out on water. Most of the time.”