The 18th Annual Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Festival
It all started in the winter of 1992-93, when a band of local wood boat builders and enthusiasts decided to form an association to foster appreciation of the area’s maritime heritage, provide a forum for local wood boat builders and shipwrights to showcase their talents, and to have some fun in the process. The Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Society (KBWBS) was born, and in May of 1993 they held the first Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Festival, an annual affair ever since. Some of the original events persist to this day while others have evolved over time. Celebrating traditional boats and boatbuilding skills with an appreciative nod to modern materials and techniques, Wooden Boat Festival events are put on through the volunteer efforts of KBWBS members and supporters.
Local businesses generously donate materials to help make the ever-popular kids’ boatbuilding an ocean of smiles for the whole family, while musicians enthusiastically volunteer their talents for a crowd-pleasing evening of sea chanteys at the Salty Dawg Saloon. Funds to offset the costs of other events and general expenses are raised through the sale of Wooden Boat Festival t-shits and sweatshirts sporting a new piece of original maritime art each year, considered by many to be collectors’ items. This year’s featured vessel is the ubiquitous Bristol Bay Double Ender, a design that defined salmon fishing in Alaska and on the Pacific coast through much of the 20th Century. An in depth exhibit at the Pratt Museum in Homer this year delves into the many faceted story of these vessels, and features an ongoing restoration of an original Double Ender led by Homer boatbuilder Dave Seaman. Check it out!
The Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Society is a non-profit organization with no paid staff, and relies on volunteers and contributions from the community to bring you the Festival every year. Thanks for helping us keep it alive!