Skaneateles, N.Y. – Gleaming wooden boats of a bygone era, old-time tunes to serenade visitors, family fun in a charming, picturesque village. It’s classic Americana. All that and more await you at the Skaneateles Antique and Classic Boat Show, July 28-30. The show, featuring some 90 boats displayed on water and land, runs 3 p.m. to dusk Friday, 9 a.m. to dusk Saturday and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday in Clift Park. Admission is free.
The event is organized by the Finger Lakes Chapter (FLC) of the Antique and Classic Boat Society (ACBS) and the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation (also known as the Skaneateles Foundation), and presented by M&T Bank. This is the Finger Lakes Chapter’s 39th annual show, and the 23rd year it has been held in Skaneateles.
More than 10,000 people attend each year. Exhibitors come not only from throughout New York state, but also from New Jersey, Ohio, Michigan, South Carolina, Florida and Canada. “Many travel hundreds of miles to get to our show,” said FLC president Rick Nelson. “They enjoy giving others the unique opportunity to get up-close and personal with their classic boats.”
Among the boats on view will be mahogany runabouts from such legendary manufacturers as Chris-Craft, Hacker and Gar Wood, as well as launches, sailboats, canoes, rowing craft and race boats, many restored to their original condition. ACBS embraces all styles of classic boats—wood, fiberglass and metal. Visitors can learn about the boats by reading the accompanying placards or talking with owners.
The boat show is the signature event for Skaneateles’ ShoreMaster dock system, originally installed in May 2016 by Brinson Marine. The docks—longer, wider and more stable than their predecessors—were made possible by donations from more than 235 community supporters.
“Skaneateles is delighted to host this show, which has become an annual tradition for exhibitors, families and visitors," said Tara Lynn, executive director of the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce. “The boat parade, free concerts and children’s activities—set against the backdrop of the village’s fine boutiques, galleries and restaurants—offer something for everyone.”
Judging of the boats, in 35 categories, takes place Saturday morning. Throughout the weekend, visitors will cast their votes for the highly coveted People's Choice Award, sponsored by Doug’s Fish Fry, which will be presented at 2:30 p.m. Sunday.
Highlights of the weekend include:
• A boat parade and fly-by, starting at 3 p.m. Saturday.
• Performances by the Skaneateles Community Band, 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday; the Diana Jacobs Jazz Trio, noon to 3 p.m. Saturday; and the Soda Ash Six, noon to 3 p.m. Sunday.
• A display of antique model boats by the Syracuse Model Boat Club, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
• A youth judging competition, sponsored by Hagerty Classic Marine Insurance to “spark kids’ passion for wooden boats,” 11 a.m. Saturday.
• Opportunities for children to paint their own wooden boats, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
• Knot-tying demonstrations, 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.
• A photo-shoot and spectator cruise aboard the Judge Ben Wiles, 10 a.m. Sunday. The Judge will leave from the Mid-Lakes Navigation dock in Clift Park and make a slow tour of the north end of Skaneateles Lake, while exhibiting boats make random passes and provide opportunities for action shots. Tickets are $13 for adults, $5 for children under 13 accompanied by an adult. For reservations, go to midlakesnav.com or call 315-685-8500.
Walk-ons are welcome.
• Raffle drawings, 2 p.m. Sunday.
This year’s poster was developed by Oswego illustrator David Owens, who “works in a loose painterly digital style, using Photoshop and a Wacom tablet as [his] canvas and palette.” In creating the artwork, he says, he was inspired by vintage posters from the end of travel posters’ golden age.
Posters are $10 and are on sale at the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce, 22 Jordan St., and at the show.
In anticipation of the show, four model boats will be on display throughout July at M&T Bank in downtown Skaneateles.
The Antique and Classic Boat Show is officially sponsored by M&T Bank. Contributing sponsors are Beak & Skiff/1911, the Sherwood Inn, Brinson Marine, Mirbeau Inn & Spa, NYCM Insurance Agency, Doug’s Fish Fry, White Birch Vineyards, Hobbit Hollow, Jacobs Press, Skaneateles Town Square/Ace Hardware, The Sailboat Shop, Adams & Son Inc., Blue Water Grill, Janice M. Miller, Architect, Johnny Angel’s Heavenly Burgers, Mid-Lakes Navigation, Realty USA, Smiles of Skaneateles, Valentine’s Pizza & Deli and Wirth’s Automotive Services. Media sponsors are Group M Communications and WRVO Public Media.
The show is handicapped-accessible.
For more information, go to http://www.skaneateles.com or call the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce at 315-685-0552.
Contact: Sandi Mulconry
Group M Communications