The 2012 Mid-Atlantic Small Craft Festival – skin-on-frame party!

[Editors note: we are doing something here we loath, which is to back-post content to fill in a hole in time. Our only excuse is that the content is genuinely from the period in time, but we never got around to sharing it. Enjoy regardless.]

With the season winding down, we made it out to the 2012 Mid-Atlantic Small Craft Festival at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michael’s, MD. With the sailing rig on AL DEMANY CHIMAN complete, it seemed right to put her up for judging again, hoping to beat the second-place finish of two years ago. We also we looking to spread the new sail and try our hand at a race.

Judging looked tough from the outset. Looking around the little green, there was a bumper crop of skin-on-frame boats. Check out the pictures.

The one guy – I didn’t get his name – was showing three, including a Greenland-style kayak he had tricked out with faux-bone spears, mocked-up arctic tools, and even a neoprene “seal.” The others were more straight-forward, but were really well done. AL DEMANY CHIMAN held her own, though, impressing with uniqueness and creativity. We got many nice compliments again. In the end, though, that qajaq was too much, and we took a proud second again.

The race proved much less successful. It was blowing modestly, and for good measure we tied in a reef (worked great!) and headed out with the fleet. Things felt good, with the latest iteration of the leeboard bracket holding it down OK and seeming snug. But then… we came about and the board pivoted up. Athwartships. The bracket failed again in a new way. Ugh. Discouraged but resolute, we headed back in, more iterating ahead of us. In retrospect, we should have given the race a whirl anyway, lateral resistance be darned. But there is always next year…

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