Hours are 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.
The Finger Lakes Chapter was established in February 1978 and held its first show that summer, at Allan H. Treman State Marine Park in Ithaca. Succeeding shows were held in Seneca Falls, Oswego, Brewerton and Owasco Lake. In 1995, the show landed on the northern shore of Skaneateles Lake (“the premier location for a boat show,” says FLC president Rick Nelson), where it has remained ever since.
The show draws more than 10,000 visitors each year. “If you have not attended this type of event before, you will come away smiling after viewing these beautiful boats,” Nelson says.
Among the 80 or so boats on display 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.
Exhibitors come from throughout New York state, New Jersey, Ohio, Michigan, South Carolina, Florida and Canada.
“Skaneateles is delighted to host this show, which has become an annual tradition for exhibitors and visitors alike,” says 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 Band, noon to 3 p.m. Saturday; and the Soda Ash Six, noon to 3 p.m. Sunday.
• Performances by the BubbleMan Circus, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.
• 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,” 10:30 a.m. Saturday.
• Opportunities for children to paint toy wooden boats, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
• Knot-tying demonstrations, 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.
• Historical tours of the village presented by the Skaneateles Historical Society, 11 a.m. and 1 p.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 $14 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 pays tribute not only to the show’s 40th anniversary but also to the 80th Lightning Regatta (which will be held July 6-8) and the 50th anniversary of Mid-Lakes Navigation. It was developed by Oswego illustrator David Owens, who also designed last year’s poster. Owens’ prints and original designs are sold at Gallery 54.
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, a mid-1940s Penn Yan Cartopper 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 NYCM Insurance Agency, Beak & Skiff/1911, the Sherwood Inn, Brinson Marine, Mirbeau Inn & Spa, Doug’s Fish Fry, Jacobs Press, The Sailboat Shop, Blue Water Grill, Cayuga Tree Service, Chase Design, Howard Hanna Real Estate Services, Janice M. Miller, Architect, Johnny Angel’s Heavenly Burgers, Mid-Lakes Navigation, Valentine’s Pizza & Deli and Wirth’s Automotive Services. Media sponsors are Group M Communications and WRVO Public Media.
The show is handicapped-accessible