Setting Course for this Summer

The WoodenBoat Show at Mystic Seaport

The WoodenBoat Show at Mystic Seaport

By the time the E-Newsletter “goes to press” the WoodenBoat Show, along with the Small Craft Workshop, will have just packed up, leaving Mystic Seaport suddenly quiet yet with a feeling of accomplishment. Is there any better celebration of the art and spirit of wooden boats and the community that they have created? We have experienced sensory overload after three days of the best of the best of wooden boats, giving us yet another chance to adore their shapes, praise their owners, and learn from the best practitioners in the field. And what a great opportunity for us to show off our talents at Mystic Seaport, as well. After all, how often does the average wooden boat enthusiast get to see (and assist with!) the hanging of a 40′ plank? This was the first year that WoodenBoat Show attendees could be so close to the restoration of the Charles W. Morgan by having access to the ship and her planking. Simply put, folks were awed by what they saw and felt. But I also need to say that it is almost cruel and unusual punishment to be among so many fine boats and not be able to take one home! How nice it was to have a representative selection of N. G. Herreshoff designed boats (both original and replicas), and of course we were so pleased to see WoodenBoat celebrate the work and achievements of Gannon and Benjamin, one of the great wooden boat yards. Ross and Nat have contributed so much to the wooden boat community and have done so with such humility; it was great to see them honored so appropriately.

There is no doubt that the Show sets the tone for the season, whether it be caring for one’s own boat or participating in one traditional boat event or another. Next weekend we host the Catboat Association Rendezvous and some 60 cats of all shapes and sizes, and simultaneously we have the OpSail in New London and Tall Ships America in Newport. Six different yacht clubs visit Mystic Seaport as part of the summer cruises, and we end the month with our Antique and Classic Boat Rendezvous, always a popular mid-summer event. This year we feature Huckins power boats, classics for sure. Joining Huckins, along with our new and regular attendees, will be vessels of the four-wheeled variety, the Austin-Healey Rendezvous. Don’t miss all this on Saturday, July 28, and we will end the day with the 3rd annual Rum Runners Rendezvous, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Beach Boys. Mystic Seaport will be the place to be!

So the Show is gone and so is June, but we have so much more to look forward to this summer, especially time on the water for us all. Enjoy yourself however you may be exercising your passion, and please remember to keep Mystic Seaport in your plans, especially with visiting family and friends!

Steve White