As usual, I headed down to the WoodenBoat Show at Mystic Seaport about this time last month. Unlike other years, it was hot - like Africa hot. And muggy. And still.
That never diminishes the fun to be had at the show - sweaty or not!
I started out my Friday morning by running into a group of good friends just as I came in the gate. The show always seems to be a place to run into friends both old and new and that's one of the things that's really great about it. I then headed down to the DuPont Shipyard where a live display of steaming and hanging a plank on the Charles W. Morgan was happening. They took volunteers from the crowd to help and I managed to sneak by to get some good pictures. I posted about this previously here.
As I was starting to walk around and see what was on display, I ran into Nick Schade of Guillemot Kayaks strarting to strip a new canoe design of his in his booth. It was one of the few booths where he had a good combination of shade and a cooling breeze coming off the water. I asked if he might want a bit of help later - the response? "Sure." I'm not sure if he thought I was kidding or not...
I managed to take in most of the boats at the docks that I was interested in as well as most of the vendors before I had to head back to do my first stint in the WoodenBoat School booth. C'mon - ya gotta have some "booth babes", right? ;-)
After that stint, I headed out to get a bite of lunch where I ran into one of my friends again. I know he hasn't built a boat, but would like to. I figured heading over to help Nick might give him the push he needed. So, we went over and spent most of the rest of the afternoon helping Nick strip his canoe and enjoying the cool breezes from the harbor.
That evening when the show closed up, I headed over to visit friends at the annual EBS. EBS? Yup. Elbow Bending Symposium - a gathering with great company, great food and a good time. Thankfully, the host and hostess let us camp on the grounds for the evening which is very convenient.
The next morning after a hasty breakfast, I headed back over to the Seaport for another stint in the booth. I arrived to find that the main parking was full and that the secondary parking was as well - they were putting people on the grass at the sides of the road!
After my stint in the booth, I went out and took a good look at two particular things. The first was the Interlux sponsored, "I built it myself" display of boats. Most are built by amateurs and it is fun to see the creativity and talent that is on display. What is always particularly interesting to me are the unique solutions that they come up with for challenges that they find in the building process. Some of the solutions are really neat.
The other excellent event is the Family BoatBuilding that goes on under at tent at the show. Families that have signed up for this event build a boat from start to finish in 3 days. When the three days are up, all they need to do is to paint, varnish and launch! Always an impressive display.
I'll leave you with a few of the sights from the show.