Good weather helps boat festival rock

Crowds gather at Percival Landing to take part in 34th annual Wooden Boat Fair

rboone@theolympian.comMay 13, 2013 

  • Among Saturday’s awards:

    Best power boat: Winifred of Seattle, a 46-foot Lake Union Dreamboat.

    Best sailboat: Pleiades of Olympia, a 59-foot Pinky Schooner.

    Favorite powerboat: Miracle of Gig Harbor, a 31-foot Lake Union Dreamboat.

    Favorite sailboat: Thunder of Olympia, a 54-foot Gaff Sloop.

    Best period boat: Naida of Olympia, a 50-foot Grebe, thought to have once been owned by actor Humphrey Bogart.

    Best small boat: Smitty J of Olympia, a 10-foot miniature tug.

    Best land display: A 16-foot rowboat known as a Lake George Boat of Gig Harbor.

    Mayor’s choice: Grace of Allyn, a 21-foot electric launch.

    Source: Earl Hughes, owner of the Lady Bee II

Saturday’s warm and muggy weather gave way to cooler temperatures Sunday, but that didn’t deter hundreds, if not thousands, from attending the final day of the 34th annual Wooden Boat Fair at Percival Landing.

Many perused the vendors and food booths, while others ventured down to the docks to take a closer look at about 45 wooden boats of all shapes and sizes tied up along the waterfront.

Planning for the event began in the fall, publicity chair Brenda Waldrop said Sunday.

“It’s amazing how we get it all set up,” she said.

Once again, Earl and Barbara Hughes of Olympia were at the event aboard their boat, the Lady Bee II, a 27-foot wooden Tollycraft. The boat was one of the last wooden boats manufactured by the Kelso-based company before it began using fiberglass, Earl Hughes said.

The Hugheses have participated in the wooden boat fair nearly every year since it began in 1979, he said.

Also returning this year was Don Gill of Longbranch, owner of a 38-foot boat called the Jackbull, thought to have been designed in Norway and powered by a Saab diesel engine.

“It sounds like dad’s tractor,” Gill, a best powerboat winner from 2008, said about the engine.

Gill acquired the boat after two previous owners had begun restoration work.

The first owner died, then the second owner continued restoring it, although he had to deal with a galley fire at one point.

Gill put his 45-foot Chris Craft up for sale, attracting the owner of the Jackbull, which had a different name before Gill got it. The two owners, after Gill spent four days inspecting the Jackbull, decided to swap boats.

Gill has owned the boat since about 1999, he said.

Although the type of boat is unclear, Gill calls it a “Franklin Trawler” after a previous owner. Rolf Boone: 360-754-5403

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