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Family Boatbuilding week starts July 10 at museum

by Bill Powell
Events Director
Maritime Museum

The Deltaville Maritime Museum is buzzin’ with sound and activities as the Boatshop volunteers get ready for the 9th annual Family Boatbuilding Week, July 10-16.

The trucks are bringing in the lumber and the guys are building sawhorses, cleaning up the Boatshop, rough cutting the lumber, and dividing it to make the eight batches necessary to build 7’ to 14’ versions of the Wright Skiff. This will be the first year that all the boats will be the 14’ version. In years past, the 12’ skiff has predominated.

This will also be the first year that Deltaville Maritime Museum and Holly Point Nature Park will stand alone as the last remaining organization in the U.S. offering a week-long boatbuilding camp or seminar building a watercraft from pieces of wood. The only others remaining are either using plywood or plastics and non-traditional techniques.

Our area should be proud that we and we alone, are still preserving a history and methodology that has been part of what has made us great.

Stop by the maritime park any time Monday through Friday, July 10-15, and watch the pieces of wood become eight floating watercraft. Watch the families and groups work in concert to form a thing of beauty. It gives you a ‘warm and fuzzy feeling’ all over!

Then, on Saturday, July 16, the finished, painted, and named skiffs, manned by their builders, enter the “Great Skiff Race” at 10 a.m. Watch as the intrepid skiff builders jockey behind the starting line.  Listen for the blast of the F.D. Crockett’s newly-installed air horn signaling the start. Enjoy the “free for all” as the boats “bumper car” around the windward mark. Who will cross the finish line first? Come out and see for yourself.

As an added bonus, the museum’s classic restored workboat, “Lillian B.,” will be on hand as race committee boat and platform for photos and watching the race “up close and personal.” She also will act as the turn buoy. Get there early to reserve your spot. First come-first served.

Captain Pete said the Lillian will be available for a free creek cruise for museum members at 1 p.m. after the Fish Fry. Only 12 spaces are available so come early that Saturday and sign up, or call the museum office and make your reservations before July 16.

Afterwards, emcee Kaptain Krunch himself will hand out trophies to the survivors.

At 11:30 a.m., after the trophy presentations, the Annual Family Boatbuilding Week Fish Fry begins. On the menu are trout fillets, hot dogs, baked beans, cole slaw, chips and endless tea. Items can be bought a la carte or a plate with your choice of two fillet sandwiches, two hot dogs or one of each, baked beans or chips, cole slaw and endless tea. The fish fry ends at 1 p.m.

Advance fish fry tickets can be purchased at Nauti Nell’s or the museum office for $10 for adults and $5 for children under 12.

Deltaville Maritime Museum and Holly Point Nature Park is a non-profit organization at 287 Jackson Creek Road and on Mill Creek. Turn right off Route 33 across from the Shell Station to get there.

Holly Point Nature Park, the Pierwalk and all other outside exhibits, gardens and facilities are open dawn to dusk throughout the year, except during pre-announced private events.

To find out more, email or call 776-7200.

posted 07.06.2011

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