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Published: Monday, 8/25/2014 - Updated: 1 month ago

Boat show draws more than 2,000 to E. Toledo

Museum of the Great Lakes hopes to be permanent host

BY CARL RYAN
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Pat Federici, of North East, Pa., left, talks about the crew quarters on the U.S. Brig Niagara with Steve and Vickie Frentz of Howard City, Mich. At 66, Mr. Federici says he is the ship’s oldest volunteer. Pat Federici, of North East, Pa., left, talks about the crew quarters on the U.S. Brig Niagara with Steve and Vickie Frentz of Howard City, Mich. At 66, Mr. Federici says he is the ship’s oldest volunteer.
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The National Museum of the Great Lakes grounds buzzed over the weekend as more than 2,000 visitors attended the Toledo Antique and Classic Boat Show there Saturday and Sunday.

Bill Duwve of Erie, Mich., looks over the U.S. Brig Niagara, which came from Erie, Pa., to the Toledo Antique and Classic Boat Show. Bill Duwve of Erie, Mich., looks over the U.S. Brig Niagara, which came from Erie, Pa., to the Toledo Antique and Classic Boat Show.
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This was the first time the museum, which opened in late April, has been the venue for the show, now in its eighth year.

Mark Sturdevant of Toledo, left, shows a finished 18-foot kayak that he built primarily of cedar to Brad Stough and Cecelia Claus, both of Deerfield, Mich. Mark Sturdevant of Toledo, left, shows a finished 18-foot kayak that he built primarily of cedar to Brad Stough and Cecelia Claus, both of Deerfield, Mich.
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Anna Kolin, the museum’s development director, said the Great Lakes Historical Society, which owns the museum, has been involved in past shows, and she had high hopes the museum would become its permanent home.

“People I’‍ve talked to said this is as good as the East Coast shows. It’‍s the perfect location,” she said of the East Toledo Marina District site.

The museum was open along with the Col. James M. Schoonmaker, the 103-year-old ore carrier on permanent display, and the U.S. Brig Niagra, the reconstructed relief flagship of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, which was visiting from its Erie, Pa., home port.

PHOTO GALLERY: Toledo Antique and Classic Boat Show

The museum held the show with Ramsey Brothers Restorations, a Toledo firm that restores classic and antique boats.

Chris Ramsey, who is involved with the company along with his two brothers and father, said 105 boat owners brought vessels in, by land or water, for display.

One was Bob Wieging of Elida, Ohio, who was there with the restored 1939 Mullins Sea Eagle he has owned for 16 years. The perfectly painted, open steel-hull powerboat sports leather seats and as much brightwork as a millionaire’s yacht, including a chrome eagle’‍s head on the bow.

Mr. Wieging said he had the boat’s Lycoming 58-horsepower engine rebuilt, the wiring replaced, and seats reupholstered.

He had it for sale, for $19,000, because “it’s time for me to move on to another project. I have a couple of guys who are interested. If it sells, fine; if not, that’‍s fine too. Ever since I was a kid I’ve been into boats.”

Al Herr traveled to the show from Washington, Mich., with his 1949 Chris-Craft Sportsman, which he uses on Lake St. Clair. The retired General Motors engineer said he travels the United States and Canada attending shows with his wood-hull boat, which contains almost nothing original except for the dash panel and a few other parts.

Most classic and antique boats are this way, he explained, saying: “You find very few that are usable in their original shape.”

His replacement engine, for instance, which weighs less than the original, is the almost-legendary Chevy small-block V-8 with a Rochester four-jet carburetor.

Mr. Herr said he has learned much about classic boats in his travels.

“Any place there is a lake, you find people building boats. All the boating people are very friendly. You have something in common,” he said.

Contact Carl Ryan at: carlryan@theblade.com or 419-724-6095.



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