The Okanagan Antique and Classic Boat Society hosted it’s annual Boat Show at the docks of the Penticton Lakeside Resort on from Sept. 28-30 and it’s safe to say they made a bit of a splash.
Attendees saw a number of classic watercraft from past eras and were asked to voted for their favourite. Many boat owners came from all over the area to participate the event.
“This is our first year back at Penticton at the wonderful Lakeside Resort,” said Brian Middleton, one of the event organizers. “Our boat club represents owners from all over Western Canada.”
For many classic or antique watercraft owners, the hobby is a labour of love that brings together those with a passion for maintenance projects, much like restoring antique or classic cars.
“Generally I’m a car guy, I’ve always liked old cars and motors, and I’ve been infatuated with these since I was a kid,” said Steve Leslie, Vancouver resident attending the show with his 1952 19-foot Chris Craft Holiday watercraft.”Once you get into these things, I got on the internet and found the society.”
Leslie’s boat is a 1952 19-foot Chris Craft Holiday watercraft that has only had two prior owners before him.
“I bought (my) boat last summer… it had been sitting for probably eight years so over the winter I’ve had to revarnish it and clean it up quite a bit,” said Leslie. “The boat’s called Joe-Vonne, it was named after the previous owner’s two daughters, Joey and Yvonne.”
Leslie said the “highlight of his summer” was meeting Joey in Seattle, who is “88 years young.” He was able to learn about his boat’s two previous owners and it’s meaning to them.
“I was lucky enough to take Joey out for a ride on Lake Washington in it and she told me all about the memories she had on the boat, she used to waterski from it and everything,” said Leslie.
The society is just one chapter within Canada dedicated to the restoration and maintenance of antique and classic boats. Interest is still low at this point but organizers are hopeful that each year more and more owners will take part.
“This year we have about 20 boats on display, hopefully if all goes well next year, we’ll have more,” said Middleton. “It’s always the first year you do these events you don’t get your ‘normal’ numbers but going forward we’re hoping to see a lot more.”
For more information about the Okanagan Antique and Classic Boat Society, visit www.oacbs.ca.
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Jordyn Thomson | Reporter
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