If you have been following the news in the past month you may have noticed that there was an Auction last weekend. After the weekend we did a story asking if Auctions were here or needed to go. With a huge response by the way, and it’s still going strong roughly 10 more comments yesterday alone. The reason for the question, was based on a huge amount of private emails about auctions and the boats being sold. The debate will hopefully continue on for years. And if our Woody Boater of the month Scott Ales has his way, it will. Scott Ales with Dana Mecum are the men behind all this. And Woody Boater would like to salute Scott for pushing us all into the 20th century.. Shhhhh, don’t tell anyone that we are in the 21st century. While many folks in the passion of Antique & Classic Boats bang the drum about the future of this hobby and the need to reach out to a younger group. The fact is, that as a demographic we deplore change, in fact we are hard wired to preserve the past. As Fellow Woody Boater “Rabbit” puts it, we are called “Curators” and love to preserve things from our past…So the trick is, how do you move forward and change things for a group that hates change. How do you engage new people into the community….Well, if you are Scott Ales, you do what you know best. You apply your life skills to your passion. Scott has been a Woody Boater from day one. A true classic boater, it’s in his DNA, but also see’s that doing things the same way is not working.
He is also passionate about auctions..That’s why several years ago he started pushing boats into the big game of big time Auctions. The Warner Auction and the Big Riva sale were the start of it. And what a splash he made.. Regardless of how you may feel about it all. He made change. He stepped out on the limb and stuck his flag into the ground. Durring the worst economic downturn in many of our lives. With no one selling anything. Scott brought hope and life to a hobby during the past bad economic years. Boats were not selling, and very few are buying and restoring. Only recently have they started picking back up. Inching up… Primarily because a new generation, the web, and new folks are entering the hobby. The Chris-Craft Antique Boat Clubs online forum, and Scott Ales with Mecum auctions should take a bow for trying new things that did infact create change and momentum during this time. Seeing boats sell, and reach huge numbers is all part of confidence building.. You see Miss America not sell for 700K.. Someone is willing to pay 700K for a fixer upper boat. DAM! Fantastic.. Trust me there are a ton of Riva Owners out there with a shrine to Mecum… In fact if you follow the auctions, you will see that these boats are always at the top of the list for highest amount sold in the auction. That’s HUGE for the hobby, Community, Lifestyle, Society… It’s a work in progress for sure, but it is progress, and for that we are better off.
So here at Woody Boater, we salute you Scott. We understand more than many what it takes to try new things, to effect change, and to take the heat from people who one day will understand how much bigger this all is besides the sale of one boat. We hope that auctions are here to stay, they are fun to watch, and will help the hobby grow.