Registration for 2019 is Open!

OK… so Lake Michigan might look not quite ready for a classic and wooden boat festival, but that shouldn’t stop you from preparing for another terrific boating season.  We’re gearing up for this year’s fun weekend in beautiful Sturgeon Bay and registrations have already begun to arrive.  Don’t wait!  The best Door County Hotel, B&B, and Inn accommodations are available now.  So download our 2019 Registration Form, or watch this site for our new on-line reservation system which will be available, soon.

See you this August!

Two Days To Go!


Well here we are, just about ready to begin a fun weekend.  The weather forecast indicates perfect weather for both our Friday cruise and the entire weekend.  Make your plans now to stop by.

Thank You U.S. Coast Guard!

Maritime Week activities are underway honoring the US Coast Guard.  One of the highlights so far was the visit of the U.S. Coast Guard cutter, Escanaba. Launched on the Great Lakes in the mid 1980’s, she’s only been back twice and she was here in Sturgeon Bay this weekend. She was open for tours and they were terrific. Normally she’s patrolling the South American coastline involved in drug interdiction activities, and it was clear that this mission visiting Great Lakes ports was a lot more pleasant.  You missed seeing her, but don’t despair because the Coast Guard will have a 45 footer docked at the Festival on Saturday for you to visit. She’ll be just behind our tug, the John Purves.


Where Are All The Boats?

Here’s some interesting information to help make your visit to the Festival more fun.  Check out this photo which shows where all the boats will be.  Don’t miss the in-water displays next door to the museum in Skipper Bud’s Harbor Club Marina.  Skipper Bud’s volunteers to host the display, so give them an attaboy when you have the chance.  Without their support our Festival wouldn’t be the same.  You’ll find the boats clustered together in the first few basins.

Skipper logo


Maritime Week Fireworks!

After the first day of our Festival closes on Saturday, there is still plenty to do and enjoy in downtown Sturgeon Bay.  The city offers a number of fine restaurants from pub food to up-scale dining.  The waterfront is beautiful in the late afternoon, perfect for a walk and an evening’s cocktail.

Don’t forget!  On Saturday night there are the fireworks over the inner harbor sponsored by the Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club and the Sail Training Foundation.  Take your boat out onto the water for the view, take a fireworks cruise aboard the Chicago Fireboat, dine at the Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club, or find a spot along the shore.  Fireworks are a great way to end Day One of our Classic and Wooden Boat Festival.

Did you know that the week prior to our festival is Maritime Week in Sturgeon Bay?  There are activities for you to enjoy all week long.  Click on this link to learn more about what’s happening!



Take a Peek

I couldn’t pass up posting another couple of pictures of Providence, the 1960 teak ketch that will be gracing our docks during the Door County Classic and Wooden Boat Festival.  She’s a real beauty. Wait until you see her in person!

image2 2 image1 3


Another beauty, although altogether different, is this 1958 Lone Star Meteor complete with her classic Gator trailer.  She’s a perfect example of the automotive styling so popular with the early fiberglass motor boating public.  She’ll be at the Festival for you to enjoy.  Until then, enjoy these pictures.  Incredible, isn’t she?



Click on a picture to view it full size.

Big Water Big Boats



One of the advantages our Classic and Wooden Boat Festival enjoys is being located on the Great Lakes with the possibility of attracting large boats.  This year we are thrilled to host Providence, a 1960 Mayflower Ketch designed by Angelman and Davies and built by American Marine at Junk Bay, Hong Kong.  She’s 40′ on deck and 52′ overall, built of 1 7/8″ teak and powered by a Detroit 3-53 50 horsepower diesel.   Her restoration is not  yet complete, but she’ll be at the dock for our Festival.  Here’s a chance to visit a truly terrific classic wooden sailing vessel right here in Sturgeon Bay.

Click on an image to see a larger version.

Remember, admission to the Classic and Wooden Boat Festival is free.  It’s really great for family fun.  Food, beautiful boats, kids’ activities and the Sikaflex Challenge!

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Maritime History Alive

One of the great advantages the Door County Maritime Museum brings to the Door County community is its ability to preserve the maritime history of the peninsula.  Our Classic and Wooden Boat Festival does its best to add to that effort.  This year we are honored to host a boat traveling from Minnesota to Sturgeon Bay- a boat with Door County connections and some real history behind it.   Here is Swan, an 18′ US Lighthouse Establishment launch from 1920.  She’s powered by a dual-cylinder 12 horsepower engine.  Her current owner purchased her from a fisherman in Door County in 1975.  She hasn’t been home in quite some time, so stop by the festival to see her in person.



And while this boat doesn’t have a true Door County connection, it’s likely the oldest boat you’ll see at the Festival.   Here is a Warren Cole Adirondack Guideboat from 1895!  She 16 beautiful feet long.  Think of it.  Grover Cleveland was President of the United States when she first hit the water.  This is a boat you’ve got to visit.

Varnished Cole Guideboat 1


Here’s a fun fact.  The Museum’s boatbuilding class constructed an Adirondack Guideboat this last winter and it is currently being raffled off through the Museum.  So if you would like a Guideboat of your own and you’d like to help support the Museum, buy your raffle tickets at the Festival or at one of the many events taking place around the peninsula this summer.  The drawing will take place at the Pumpkin Patch Festival in Egg Harbor this fall.  The winner does not need to be present.  For information about the raffle, click here. 


Registration is underway!

We are looking forward to a great Festival again this year and it looks like we’re going to have a terrific collection of boats for everyone to enjoy.  Whether you enjoy kayaks and canoes, sailboats, classic fiberglass, historic craft, or varnished mahogany, we’re going to have it all this August.  Now is the time to register if you want to join the fun!

Here’s a sneak peek at a bit of what’s in store for 2018.  There’s much more.

Here’s a link to our 2018 Registration Form

See you in August in Sturgeon Bay!

News Flash 7

Only a couple of days to go!

Are you ready for the Classic and Wooden Boat Festival?  We are.  Nearly 40 boats will be on display on the museum grounds and next door in the water at Skipper Bud’s Harbor Club Marina.  We will accept boats right up to the festival opening at 9am Saturday morning, so if you want to be part of the festival, join in.  The weather forecast is still great.  It’s going to be a beautiful weekend.

Remember there is something at the show for everyone- classic wooden motorboats, beautiful sailboats, canoes, fiberglass classics and more.  Even the kids can have fun.  The Coast Guard’s Coastie will be there along with a damage control interactive trailer, toy boat painting, and the fun along Madison Avenue.

Admission to the grounds of the festival is free.  The museum and our tug, the John Purves, are open with low boat-show special entrance fees.  The always entertaining Sikaflex Challenge Boat Building Competition and time trials on Sunday won’t cost you a dime to watch.

So bring the family.  It’s fun, the displays are terrific, and the food is the best of any boat show in Wisconsin.

News Flash 6

Great Weather- Great Boats

chris miller
Thanks to Chris Miller Photography for the romantic Door County photo!

The long-range forecast for our festival weekend is calling for great weather, so now’s the time to register your boat and visit beautiful Door County, Wisconsin.  It looks like we’re going to have a nice variety of classics attending this year.   Take a look at this list of boat builders whose handiwork will be on display.  And there are more to come…

Cruisers Inc.


Chris Craft






Shell Lake



Correct Craft

Superior Plastics/Marlin

Lone Star

News Flash 5

Great Weather Predicted

We just checked the long range forecast for the weekend of August 12th and it looks terrific.  Sunny, mild, a cool gentle breeze.    Check it out by clicking here.   So it’s safe to send in your reservations now.  So far, we have ten boats in our pre-event cruise on Friday with room for more.  If you want to be part of the cruise, let us know right away by emailing us at  The deadline is August 1st, but we may be able to accommodate late registrations if they are in ASAP.

For the Kids

You might get a kick out of seeing the toy tugboats and sailboats a dedicated group of volunteers have created for our Kids Boat Painting activity which will be located behind the museum next to the Sikaflex Challenge builders during the festival.  We supply the paint- the kids provide the talent.  We have a great fleet of these classic wooden vessels!

There are more great activities for kids at the festival, too.   Watch for more information.


News Flash 4

Lighthouses and “Fiberglassics”

Seven boats have already registered for the pre-event cruise on Friday, August 11th.  The 2nd Annual Bay to Lake Lighthouse Cruise was new last year and gives visiting boaters a chance to exercise their classic craft, pose for a couple of great photo-ops, visit two of Door County’s finest lighthouses, have a terrific lunch at the Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club, tour the museum’s signature vessel the John Purves, and finally enjoy a cocktail reception in the museum at the end of the day.  And all of that is before the festival officially opens!  If you are planning to bring a boat, we have to have your registration prior to August 1st if you are planning to take part in the cruise.


As you know, we are encouraging great boats from the early days of fiberglass to attend the show.  These “Fiberglassics” are becoming very popular collector boats and there are many in Wisconsin.  The photos above show one, a Shell Lake Rocket, that we be with us in August.  It will be great to see these terrific designs once again.

News Flash 3

If you haven’t registered yet for our festival, now’s the time!

We are going to have a few beautiful boats again this year as we always do.  Remember though, that well-maintained “user” boats are also welcome.  This show values heritage.  The history of each boat and the stories owners can share with visitors are priceless.  So what can you look forward to?  The Amphicar will be here again of course, but on Sunday only.  So if you want to see her in action, drop in then.  It looks like a good year for lapstrake boats, too.  Here’s a little teaser.


And while your visiting the festival, don’t forget to check out our Boathouse Sale.

(Click here)

Wooden Sailboat - 18 inches

We are going to have some terrific bargains available for you to purchase in support of the Door County Maritime Museum.  Not only will there be unique nautical items, but a nice selection of boats, too.  Plan your visit now.

Thank You Supporters and Volunteers!

The Door County Classic and Wooden Boat Festival relies on the generosity of many  businesses and individuals across the community who volunteer time, resources, and monetary support. We hope you will thank them for that support by supporting them.  Please visit them and let them know you appreciate their participation.  Check them out by clicking here.

News Flash 2

IMG_3225A Schedule of Events

The best way to plan for our festival is to look ahead at the schedule of events for August 11 through 13.  There will be lots to do at the Museum all weekend and fun next door at the Maritime on Madison street festival on Saturday.  Check out the Museum’s events below.

Friday, August 11, 2017

11 am – 5 pm Bay to Lake Lighthouse Cruise for Boat Registrants
6 pm – 8 pm Boat Registrant Cocktail Reception


Saturday, August 12, 2017     

9 am – 6 pm Door County Maritime Museum open

Boat House Sale

Special tugboat John Purves tours

Classic & Wooden Boat Displays (in-water and out-of-water)

Voting for People’s Choice—Classic & Wooden Boat (ends at 6 p.m.)

Demonstrations (Aquacar, Kahlenberg Engine, Coast Guard demos)

Kids’ Games

Wooden Boat Raffle

Concession Sales

10 am – 6 pm Sikaflex Boatbuilding Challenge –construction phase followed by decoration
10:30 am – 12 pm Chicago Fireboat Tour (purchase tickets onboard)
11 am – 3 pm Coast Guard 41’ Boat Guided Tours
12:30 pm – 2 pm Chicago Fireboat Tour (purchase tickets onboard)
2 pm Start Your Engines
7 pm Evening on the Bay– Boat Parade at Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club
Dusk Fireworks at Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club


Sunday, August 13, 2017

9 am – 5 pm Door County Maritime Museum open
9 am – 12 pm Voting for People’s Choice—Sikaflex boats
10 am – 3 pm Boat House Sale

Special tugboat John Purves tours

Classic & Wooden Boat Displays (in-water and out-of-water)

Demonstrations (Aquacar, Kahlenberg Engine, Coast Guard demos)

Kids’ Games

Wooden Boat Raffle

Concession Sales

10:30 am – 12 pm Chicago Fireboat Tour (purchase tickets onboard)
11 am – 2 pm Coast Guard 41’ Boat Guided Tours
1 pm Sikaflex Boatbuilding Challenge—Time Trials
3 pm Festival closes following Awards Ceremony

News Flash 1

Our Festival is more than an exhibit of beautiful classic and wooden boats.  It’s also a place to find a special treasure for your boat or home.  Nautical odds and ends will be on sale at our Boathouse Sale tent.  The proceeds of the sale support the Door County Maritime Museum, so you can feel good about buying yourself a special little item.  The prices are always right and the selection is always interesting.

Wondering what’s in store this year.  Look at this.  A sailboard!  Just what you need. To discover what else awaits you, plan to visit the Festival on August 12 and 13th.

donated sailboard

Registration is now open!


Registration for this year’s festival is open and several boats have already reserved space for this August.  Joining us in Door County is simple.  Download the registration material, fill it in and mail it with your check to the address on the form.  That’s it. You can download the registration form by clicking here.

We want to feature some of the boats that are coming in 2017 on this site as the year progresses, so if you can, when you register please include information about your boat and a picture if you have one available.

If it’s easier, you can always email your boat’s history and send the picture to us at:

Mark your Calendar Now


Here it comes!

August 12 and 13, 2017 with pre-event cruise/social on August 11, 2017.

It’s time to mark your calendar for the 27th Door County Classic and Wooden Boat Festival.  Join us in Sturgeon Bay on Saturday and Sunday, August 12 and 13, 2017 to enjoy a weekend of vintage and classic boating on the grounds of the Door County Maritime Museum.  Planning is well underway and it’s going to be a fun festival.

If you are considering bringing a boat, we have a special pre-event cruise scheduled for Friday, August 11th prior to the festival’s official opening.  It’s our second annual Bay to Lake Lighthouse Cruise.  If you join the fleet, the cruise will give you a chance to meet and socialize with your fellow boaters and take your boat out onto the water for some really good cruising and great photo-ops.

Watch this site for further announcements.


A List of Vessels


If you missed this year’s festival, you might wonder what kinds of vessels registered for our show.  It was a fascinating mix that ranged from an 8′ dingy to a 69′ tall ship.

Check out the list below.

1955 15′ Lyman Runabout
2008 17′ Sea Kayak
2005 17′ Canoe/Outrigger
2015 10′ Touring Kayak
1957 15′ Thompson Sea Coaster
1951 27′ Chris Craft Super Semi-enclosed Cruiser
1958 19′ Streblow Rebel
2015 19′ Glen L Torpedo
1963 14′ Amphicar
2012 17′ Outer Island Kayak
2015 18′ Voyageur Canoe
2006 17′ Rangely Lake Boat
2016 17′ Traveler Canoe
1969 16′ Steury V-416 Fiberglass
1918 30′ Leyore
1966 15′ Thompson
2009 19′ Oselver Faering
2013 15′ Marsh Cat
1947 17′ Chris Craft Deluxe Runabout
2015 17′ Penobscot 17
1967 22′ Chris Craft Sea Skiff Sportsman
20?? 10′ Lawton Tender
1960 10′ Saetre Combi-Jolle
1935 24′ Burger Crocker #159
1895 16′ Warren Cole Adirondack Guideboat
2003 18′ Redfish Return Kayak
2011 15′ Bear Mountain Hiawatha Canoe
1950 18′ Greavette DISPRO
2007 18′ Ted Moores Red Bird Canoe
1954 15′ Streblow
2003 15′ River Runner
1953 24′ Chris Craft Holiday
1941 11′ Dunphy Portage
1957 18′ Cruisers Inc 502 Vacationer
1957 19′ Lyman Islander Runabout
1950’s 14′ Jet 14 Racing Dingy
1959 17′ Cruisers Inc Commander
1963 36′ Chris Craft Roamer
1960 8′ El Toro Racing Dingy
1958 15′ Tomahawk Ski-Mate
1960 12′ Homebuilt Rowboat
2016 16′ Whitehall Pulling Boat

It Was A Great Festival


Mark your calendars now for next year’s festival, August 11 through 13, 2017!

We enjoyed great weather and big crowds at this year’s Classic and Wooden Boat Festival. 43 vessels were on hand for boating enthusiasts to enjoy.  Everything was here, from classic wooden fishing boats to canoes, kayaks, sailing vessels, to beautiful mahogany wooden runabouts. The Coast Guard offered tours of the museum’s 41 foot Coast Guard Cutter and encouraged kids of all ages to “save their ships” in the Damage Control Simulator.   Art lovers marveled at the original paintings and prints displayed in the museum- works by talented regional artists. The Kahlenberg Engine fired up providing a rarely experienced opportunity for fans of marine engines. The Chicago Fireboat and our tall ship, The Edith Becker  offered cruises. Visitors enjoyed delicious locally caught Whitefish sandwiches expertly fried and drank refreshingly cool beverages.  The Boathouse Sale offered “veteran” pieces of equipment for sale and anyone interested could buy a raffle ticket to win the museum’s newly built Whitehall pulling boat.  Visitors toured the museum amazed at Door County’s maritime history, and of course, spectators enjoyed watching the building, racing, and eventual destruction of entries in the Sikaflex Challenge Boatbuilding Contest.

Check out the galleries of photos from this year’s festival.