Reflections Of The Recent St. John’s River Cruise Southbound

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Screen Shot 2015-04-03 at 3.56.21 AMThanks to Paul Harrison for sending us this report on the St. John’s River Cruise. PAUL NOTES: For those of you who have not done the cruise, or who have only done part of it, this fantastic video shot by Chris and Julie Bullen of Toronto really shows the spirit of the event and the participants, and to some extent the hobby, I think. He shot this when we were on the cruise last week.

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Here we have a group of old boats (27) and a group (at least 60) of very fun and passionate people, out on a 4-5 day trip. Does the weather matter to them? Not really. How about water conditions? Not really. How about some dumpy hotels? Not at all. It is about people getting out on the water and having fun in their old boats as a group. It is not about judging and politics. The boats look great and the people look like they are having a great time – and we all were.

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Even the guys in the deck boat had a great time – wife beaters and all! Good fellows and just out doing the same thing as the rest of us. I heard at the end of the cruise at the show that someone came up and made him an offer he could not refuse on the deck boat and he sold it – perhaps it was $100 for all I know, but that is not the point. Maybe he will come back with a real classic next year, after spending a fun week amongst all the other boats? He was made to feel welcome and part of the group on this trip, even if he had a cheap old deck boat.

28 replies
  1. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    I think we are missing 90-95% of the story. Besides the missing video, we all know Paul couldn’t write anything that brief.

  2. Jim Staib
    Jim Staib says:

    You really have to do the cruise to get the real experience. I did it about 20 years ago and have missed very few since. Always a blast. Boating, food, drink, and friends. And no snow. What else could you ask for?
    Will there be a story on the Royal Canadian Navy Submarine Fleet?

  3. Wilson
    Wilson says:

    Maybe Paul Harvey will come to life tomorrow and give us the “Rest of the story”.

    But as Dr. Rot says….there is nothing like a river cruise. If you haven’t done it, put it on your bucket list.

  4. Bill Hammond
    Bill Hammond says:

    No link either. Is the red & white boat with the red Bimini Top supposed to be the deck boat? I feels like something’s missing. And your posting link is malfunctioning. This is attempt #7. It keeps telling me I have the incorrect Captcha Value.

  5. Matt
    Matt says:

    Sorry folks! Yes there is a 12 minute video. I placed the story this am and then the video disappeared and I was out of range to fix it. I will embed it as soon as I am back to my computer.

  6. Troy in ANE
    Troy in ANE says:

    It is a GREAT video even if YOU can’t see it.

    Here is a little one to hold you over, but than again Matt has to approve this too so it will not be up until he gets the original one up anyway.

  7. Matt
    Matt says:

    Sorry, Video is re uploaded now. I was out of any web area this morning. All is well in the world now.

  8. Nautilus
    Nautilus says:

    Very nice video! I’m impressed by the fact that so many of the “show” boat were actually USED. So many times, I’ve seen “trailer queens” show up on, are shown and judged on and then return on their trailers! Also, I wasn’t aware that the St. Johns River cruise was a “run what you brung” affair. If I had known, we’d have brought our “modern” 1988 boat. Well anyway, the video has sold us. We’re planning to show up next year with the 1948 CC Express.

    • Paul H.
      Paul H. says:

      I am glad you pointed this out – people seem to think (imagine?) that these boats are trailer queens. I go to shows all over the place and what I see is people using their boats and wanting to use them even more! I have no idea how the idea persists that the shows are full of trailer queens when to me, the polar opposite is true. It is one thing that is so inviting about the hobby – folks are active and really want to be out on the water. I will never own any boat that I don’t use or am afraid to use – what is the point if you don’t want to use them?

  9. Alex
    Alex says:

    Wait. There were wife beaters in your midst, yet you failed to take action in order to get footage?

    What is this CNN?

  10. Norm Kitching
    Norm Kitching says:

    WOW what great trip, makes me want to work on my boat, I want to be there ! Really nice to see the boats being used, really used, and everybody having fun.


  11. Greg Lewandowski
    Greg Lewandowski says:

    Man, what a great way to capture a wonderful boating adventure. I have got to do that in the next few years. Thanks Chris and crew for sharing!

  12. Paul H.
    Paul H. says:

    We are leaving in an hour to go back to Palatka and try to get back to Lake Dora via the Ocklawaha river tomorrow – about 80 miles or so, and passable sometimes. We are going with another boat, and are always up for a challenge. There is great boating around here, as well as warmth and sun

  13. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    This was “white out” Sunday, a day before the cruise on the way up from Palatka. Fortunately not bad enough to stop us from running on plane. Just glad we didn’t run into a “ghost ship”.

    We’ve enjoyed passengers from Wilson Wright, Al Benton, and George Kreissle who spent 17 years restoring Guy Lombardo’s 41′ Hacker Tempo IV to Troy and Sandy Hersham and Russ and Patrice Anderson (photo journalist for Toronto Chapter’s Classicboat magazine. Heard a lot of great stories down the river.

  14. Cobourg Kid
    Cobourg Kid says:

    Wonderful Vidio and masterful editing the drone was an very nice added touch. I can’t imagine how long it took Julie and Chris to piece its story all together but the end result is Lush… Thank You

  15. Dennis Mykols
    Dennis Mykols says:

    We have been wanting to do this for the past 5 years, ever since we heard about it. Last year we were all set to bring the Lyman down, then we got so much snow, I could not get it out of the storage garage. Kind of hate that I sold her before doing this trip. The Lymans and Sea Skiffs, look like they were the driest, warmest, and most comfortable.
    Oh well, there’s always another boat…

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