Quote by Mrs. Tolman
"The reason they mean so much is my late husband and my son built a Tolman skiff. My husband had seen one when we were in Homer and fell in love with the design. He ordered either a book or a set of plans and he and my son spent one winter building the skiff in our garage.
When we were finally able to take the boat down to Homer, we happened to run into Renn and he complimented them on the finished boat. The guys were thrilled.
My husband moved to the east coast when my son headed off to college and they had to sell the boat. He passed away a few years ago and my son took his ashes up to Homer, his favorite place. While he was there, he happened to be walking through the harbor and saw the boat. It brought back so many memories for him.
So when someone showed me a picture of the shirts, I just knew I had to get them.
There's a picture of his skiff on this website."
Thanks to Kevin Dee and Corey Freedman, many kayaks and an umiak were on display at the boat show. Thanks to John Miles and Pat Ladd, hundreds of toy boat hulls were transformed by kids into colorful boatlets. Quite a few people got out on the Bay to row boats and paddle kayaks.
T-shirts and hoodies were sold featuring the exciting logo by the Lind sisters, Three Kayaks. New members joined, old members renewed, and old friendships continued. Auction night at Alice's Champagne Palace was a great success, thanks to Tricia Caron and Trish Lillibridge. A beautiful ad in the Homer News thanked the many participants and supporters who made this festival happen.
Following the Festival, the Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Society voted to open a temporary headquarters in downtown Homer, at 158 West Pioneer Avenue. The phone number is 235-BOAT (235-2628) and visitors are welcome.
2014 will be the year of Build Your Own Boat. Stay turned for educational developments designed to offer the hundreds of Homer Youth who have built toy boats an opportunity to build real boats!
Friday night Glenn Caldwell stole the show with his raconterial skill. We owe him a lot for getting the whole Festival idea off the ground in the first place, back in 1992. He was followed be a wonderful movie, “Charlotte,” about the Gannon and Benjamin yard back east at Marblehead, a little burg reminiscent of Homer, where the whole town turns out for a launching. We still have copies for sale at the very reasonable price of $25.
Saturday the usual swarms of kids were hammering and painting and drying their boats on the big stove. Norm Griffin showed up and beamed at the fuss made over him. He’s done so much for us and others in his quiet steady way. We had net mending with Jim James, and bronze casting with Dan Young and Leo Vait. Good show, gentlemen! Dan is a steam guy and machinist, and Leo can do anything artistic. Saturday evening brought the sunshine, and our auction suffered significantly, but those who were there made out like bandits, yours truly included (I bought the wineglass wherry kit for $700 eat your hearts out!) My heart was sinking when our intrepid auctioneer Bumppo looked around at the (lack of) crowd and said, “OK, there’s gonna be some deals tonight! Later, the Rogues and Wenches pulled in a good crowd and we danced til we dropped. Great Show!
Sunday more sunny weather at the festival site on the Spit. Our hot dog guy from up the road was very popular. I had dogs for breakfast and lunch. The Smolt, Bristol Bay double ender from Seldovia, floated beautifully just off shore, unfortunately unavailable for rides due to a funny combination of falling tide on a flat beach and an onshore chop. Lots of nice boats were represented, and the canoes of Norm Griffin (supposedly his last boat, ya sure!) and Dave Brann’s Old Town got lots of conversation and accolades. Renn Tolman was his inimitable self, Ryjil Christianson did Ted Pedersen’s Whaleboat proud, and we had everything wrapped up by 9pm, for a last drink at the Dawg with those lucky enough to last that long. John Miles and Cam Forbes went beyond the call of duty towing the Smolt back to Seldovia the next day.
The 20th Annual Wooden Boat Festival, held in the unpredictable weather of a late September weekend, was a success! Participants carried on through some blustery, rainy first days, and were rewarded with a gorgeous Sunday to close out the Festival.
– Dave Seaman
Her original designation was USA ST (small tug) 413. After the war she was transferred to the Federal Aviation Agency, renamed the Fedair III, and survived sitting for 5 years, and through a succession of owners, until being purchased by John Rogers and converted for charters and bear watching tours. She has great tugboat lines and has warm and comfortable accommodations. We are planning to have her open for tours. More info at the Festival.
This year represents a big change for the Wooden Boat crew, the most noticeable of which is the move to holding the Festival in September instead of in May, as in years past. The change was made for a variety of reasons, but the most important one has to do with trying to reach more of the community by holding the Festival at a time when more people want to come out.
In the past, when more of us were actively engaged in commercial fishing ventures, it made sense to have an early spring party before salmon season began. Even now, one of the things we’ll miss about the May Festival is that sense of emerging from winter and kicking off the year on the water. However, we’ve had to admit that as much as we love the light in May, the weather has often left a lot to be desired. Many are the tales of huddling around the giant wood stove at one end of the tent while marveling at how much fun could be had in a thirty knot breeze...
With the passage of time, though, we’ve found that there’s something to be said for the warmer days of late summer, and the hope is that by moving the Festival to the weekend after Labor Day, we’ll keep the “local” feeling intact and have a chance at some summer weather as well, and the greater turnout that such weather could bring. The Pederson Rowboat races are just more fun when we can hold them in nicer weather (despite claims by some that tiny boats in six foot seas are what really separate the water rats from the lubbers!)
Fear not, though, we’ll still have that giant woodstove out and roaring. Some things are just too good to change. Have a great summer, and we’ll see you in the fall.
Our plan is to erect a small structure there that can shelter our increasing collection of vessels, and also provide a location for the small boat construction and restoration classes that we’ve always dreamed of offering to the community of Homer.
We’re going to need help to make it happen, though, and you can be a part of that by becoming a member. Click on the link above to learn more about membership in your local Wooden Boat Society; it doesn’t take much, and it helps a lot. Thanks!