Heritage Day Canoe & Wooden Boat Show


Heritage Day Canoe & Wooden Boat Show

Saturday, May 25, 2019
10 AM – 4 PM

Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Museum
312 N Front St, Spooner, Wisconsin 54801


On Saturday, May 25, from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, the Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Museum (WCHM) in Spooner, Wisconsin, will be celebrating Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Day. This free annual event marks the season opening of the museum and will include museum tours and open house in the museum exhibit hall, ongoing activities and demonstrations in the canoe workshop, live music and food and beverage in the beer garden, a silent auction and canoe raffle, and of course the annual WCHM Canoe & Wooden Boat Show in the street in front of this former grain elevator turned museum.

Canoe & Wooden Boat Show

The 11th annual boat show will be the highlight of the day. A wide array of antique canoes, boats, and canoe related materials will be on display, with collectors, builders, and canoeing enthusiasts, in general, bringing their gems to display, trade, sell, or just simply talk about. Wooden boats of all shapes, sizes, and designs are welcome, both classic and modern, as well as all kinds of classic and vintage water and paddling related items. Exhibitors can include individuals, commercial entities, non-profits, authors, government agencies, educators, crafters, and businesses whose products or services are relevant to boaters and wooden boats and canoes (booth space is free, email to info@WisconsinCanoeHeritageMuseum.org for more information).

Live Music In The Beer Garden

Meanwhile, out in the beer garden, there will be live music on the “back porch” stage from 11 am to 4 pm. Brave Cowboy, featuring Jason Rabuck on harmonica and guitar and Eric Schubring on banjo and guitar, is a museum favorite and returning from last year. They provide an inspiring and vibrant blend of folk, rock, blues, and originals. They will be joined by Tom Draughon from Ashland. Raised in the mountains of Virginia and West Virginia, there is no finer performer of traditional Appalachian music than Tom Draughon. A consummate instrumentalist, Tom renders authentic fiddle tunes, banjo songs, and flat and finger-picked guitar styles, combined with clear vocals, to bring the mountains to you. And Les Fils du Voyageur brings the fur trade era to life through songs of the voyageurs. Performed a capella in three-part harmony, and portrayed in authentic period costume, Les Fils du Voyageur present an extensive collection of paddling, working and playing songs that paint an exciting historical overview of the life and times of a voyageur.

Inside The Exhibit Hall

Each new year brings something new to the WCHM exhibit hall. Planned for 2019, and currently under construction, is an exhibit to honor the canoe racing, canoe building, and canoe designing career of Gene Jensen, the Minnesota native who was the founder of the modern era marathon racing canoe. In the world of professional canoe racing, Gene Jensen’s V1-Pro has dominated the pro-canoe race circuit throughout North America. The wood prototype of the V1-Pro, built by Jensen himself to test his latest innovation ideas, was donated to the WCHM several years ago and will be featured in the exhibit alongside its contemporary twin loaned to WCHM from Wenonah Canoes.

Inside The Canoe Shop

Always an area of intense interest to canoe aficionados, woodworkers, and novice visitors alike, the WCHM canoe shop will host several on-going demonstrations throughout the day. Topics planned include the re-canvassing of a 1937 Old Town Guide 18’ canoe; rib steaming and bending for the start of a new museum raffle canoe; and a special feature this year – discussion and planning of the restoration of a 1920’s Old Town 24 foot War Canoe that will be part of a summer’s long project for the shop. In addition, there will be plenty of knowledgeable folks hanging around to answer questions and provide interesting discussion of canoe craft.

Up For Auction

The silent auction has been a popular and growing feature of Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Day for the last several years. This year it will grow again with several boats on the block, including a CLC Jimmy Skiff with a sail rigging kit included, a 1942 Old Town Guide restoration project, an aluminum Grumman canoe complete with original sailing rig, an antique wood frame canvas duck boat, a 16 foot Trailblazer Explorer Canoe built in the 1960’s from a plan published in Boy’s Life Magazine, and a 14 foot cedar canvas solo canoe built in the WCHM canoe 2015 on a Jerry Karbon form. Raffle tickets for the annual WCHM canoe raffle will also be available. Top prize is winner’s choice of two 15 foot cedar canvas tandem canoes built in the WCHM canoe shop.

The Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Museum is a 501c3 volunteer led non-profit organization based in Spooner, Wisconsin. Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Day is a free event in Spooner produced by the WCHM each year on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend from 10 am to 4 pm. For more information visit www.WisconsinCanoeHeritageMuseum.org.