Today a new club member approached me with the question, “What are we trying to accomplish as a club, and why? What is the vision?”
I thought about it for a few hours before I wrote him back:
My vision is to give the antique/classic/wooden boating lifestyle the “fine vintage” feel, much like a handcrafted bourbon. It’s like Carlo Riva said in the 80’s when the mass-produced plastic boats had taken over; “When you’re out there, on the water, in a fine wooden craft, you feel like a million dollars, even though you don’t have a penny in the bank.” I want to create a longing for owning a fine wooden craft or the coolness of a 50-60’s classic fiberglass boat. The way to achieve this is to expose our crafts to the public, let the public see, touch and feel the beauty of our crafts. To have an association of people who can arrange and create events where members and potential members have fun, use their crafts and want to attend.
If we continue to have shows and events for our members only with no public exposure, our hobby and club will die out. The question I ask myself is, “Who is going to purchase our crafts from us?” The majority of the generation after us have no personal connection to a wooden or classic boat. Feelings like “my grandpa had one, and I learned to boat/ski in/on one… “ will no longer drive the purchase of a classic boat. That’s a generation or two ago. We need to create a new feel for our crafts, like “fine vintage”, or “cool classics”.
Bay State Woodies Chapter President
This message was in the Fall Issue of the Bay State Woodies Chapter publication. It is shared here with permission.