2024 Big Little Boat Festival Recap - Part 2

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Low-key competitions for boatbuilding have always been a feature of CLC's Big Little Boat Festival and "OkoumeFest." We have never failed to be amazed at the quality and variety of small wooden boats that arrive from all over the country.

John Henderson brought this lovely Nymph 12.

Chad Tompkins built this exceptionally-detailed strip-planked Petrel Play. 

A skin-on-frame canoe and Kaholo SUP built by Chris Larkin.

Matt King brought this beautifully executed Cape Falcon F1 skin-on-frame kayak.

Matt King won Runner-Up Best Kayak with his Shearwater Sport Hybrid.

Matt notes that somewhere on the side of the road between his home and Conquest Beach is the seat for his Shearwater Sport.

Shearwater 14 Kayak

Best Kayak went to repeat-winner David Dawson for this all-composite Shearwater 14 Hybrid.

Dave provided a few extra photos, and explains: "I built a Shearwater 14 Hybrid from the plans. The hull is unchanged, but the deck is 3mm okoume instead of stripped. I also dropped the arch in the front deck by 1.5” out of personal preference for a lower cockpit rim. Then instead of straight fiberglass over the ply, I used BoardLam’s “premium” print fiberglass on the deck and a Kevlar/carbon blend on the hull. There’s also a 2 oz. layer of glass over the printed glass to protect it. The gold and bronze toned detailing is all epoxy resin mixed with various pigments."

Shearwater 14 by David Dawson

Close-up of the deck of David Dawson's Shearwater 14.

"Urchin," a cheerful red Chester Yawl built by Richard Ewing, won Best Smallcraft. If you've ever worked around the porcupine-like (or sea-urchin-like) assembly of a newly stitched-up stitch-and-glue boat, you'll appreciate the boat's name. 

Best In Show went to Mike Roberts for his Wood Duck 10 Hybrid. The judges responded to Mike's exuberant use of wood strip colors and artful curves—all crafted beautifully with understated grace. Congratulations, Mike, well done! 

Young boatbuilder Ari was awarded "Best Cardboard Boat." 

John hands out awards late on Saturday afternoon.

Next year's planning has begun! The Big Little Boat Festival will be back on May 17th, 2025 -- SEE YOU THERE!

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