Classic Boats Tour Gull Lake On Saturday – 2012 Is Bigger And Better Than Ever!

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Lee Anderson’s TOLKA – 1922 36’ Alexander Graham Bell Laboratories

One of the most asked questions Matt & I hear when we go to boat shows or classic boating events is – “How do you guys do it every day?” The answer to that question is – “We are able to keep the stories fresh with the help of all the folks who contribute to Woody Boater from around the country and around the world… And the folks who contribute with photos and stories do it for one reason, because they also share the same passion for the hobby that we do.” (and by the way, don’t forget you can click on the images to enlarge them, it’s worth it..)

Today’s quick story is a perfect example of that passion. It’s 1:45 AM EST on Sunday morning and an e-mail just came in from fellow Woody Boater and Contibutor Dane Anderson in Minnesota. Here’s what the e-mail said…


Day one at the 2012 Gull Lake Classic Boat Show is in the books… Not much sun and it rained on the parade. Fellow Woody Boater Dave Bortner (from Freedom Boat Service) offered me a ride on his beautiful 1972 30′ Lyman. Holy crap is that a smooth ride!

Here are a few shots from the Classic Boat Tour of Gull Lake today. I’m borrowing Internet access for a few minutes tonight, otherwise I’ll be back home late tomorrow night.


We always enjoy seeing Dane Anderson’s awesome photography here at Woody Boater, and I knew even before I opened the e-mail that the images would be great… And as usual, they are.

Dane and Dave are at this weekend’s Fourth Annual 2012 Gull Lake Classic Boat Show in beautiful Lake Country Minnesota. This non-ACBS event is described on the show’s website as – “Even bigger and better than ever and will allow many more spectators the opportunity to view some of the rarest collection of boats that still exist. Last year we had over 8,000 spectators viewing 65 boats and this year Bar Harbor is completely remodeled inside and out and we are expecting even bigger numbers. The remodeled Bay Harbor building is just like you would expect to see from a five star restaurant in Bar Harbor, Maine and the docks have been completely reinforced.”

On Saturday they organized a boat cruise of Gull Lake for the participants and also a shoreline parade for the spectators, then the show continues on Sunday.

I was really hoping to make it to the Gull Lake show this year, not only to experience the event, the nice people and the wonderful Minnesota lake country area, but also to get a first hand glimpse of a few of Lee Anderson’s & John Allen’s amazing collection of wooden boats. However, that darn day-job messed up my plans. But thanks to Dane we will all get to see a few over the next couple of days.

Like “Apache II” – This spectacular 1922 29′ Hacker-Craft Gentlemen’s Raceboat. This boat was raced on Lake Tahoe in the 1920’s & 1930’s in the annual Tahoe Power Boat Club (later the Tahoe Yacht Club) Regattas.

“Apache II” was restored by Dave Wright at Wright Restoration in southern California in 2007 and is powered by a 400 HP 12-Cylinder Liberty aircraft engine. Dave Wright is one of the countries leading experts on Liberty aircraft engines used for marine applications.

Dane snapped a shot of this classic Chris-Craft cruiser, looks like a good boat to be riding in during the rainy tour of Gull lake…

Here’s a great shot of Lee Anderson piloting “Cicada” – an original Liberty V-12 powered 1928 33’ Gar Wood Baby Gar. This is also the photo we used for the Woody Boater header today, but I wanted to include these photos in the story as well so they can remain with the story for future reference.

As we know, these big 33″ Gar Woods are difficult to photograph and get in the frame from the side due to the sheer length of the boat… So we thought it would be fun to zoom in and show you the Baby Gar from the front (as she was coming) and then from the rear (as she is going).

But if you prefer to see her all in one shot, here it is. The 33′ Gar Wood looks so elegant gliding across the water on Gull Lake with her soft top up…

The Fourth Annual 2012 Gull Lake Classic Boat Show continues on Sunday, and if the weather holds we will keep our fingers crossed and hopefully see some more images and a report from Dane later this week.

You can Click Here to go directly to the Gull Lake Classic Boat Show website.

Special thanks to Dane Anderson & Dave Bortner for your help and contribution today from Gull Lake.


Also – We should also note that TOLKA (the boat in today`s cover shot) Lee Anderson`s perfectly restored 1922 36’ Alexander Graham Bell Laboratories launch is spending the summer touring around to many of the top boat shows in the country, and will be at the upcoming ACBS International Meetings and Show in Table Rock, Missouri in September.

Fellow Woody Boater Richard McGraw has been working hard to develop a website for all things TOLKA which documents the entire restoration process (60 photos), all the historical articles so far (8), a photo gallery, old super 8 movies of TOLKA, the people behind the ownership and restoration of TOLKA and more. Something for everyone. On the website you can also see TOLKAS impressive tour schedule for 2012.

TOLKA won the Captain’s Choice award and Longest Haul award`at this years Toronto Chapter ACBS Show in Gravenhurst, Ontario. This was not a judged show so winning the acknowledgement of the other boat owners was pretty nice. During the Gravenhurst show, TOLKA pulled a water skier around the bay for the crowd which was a lot of fun and something she did regularly 60 years ago.

TOLKA Pulling Water Skiers in Gravenhurst – Photo by Timothy Du Vernet

The second shot below shows Tony Lash, the grandson of TOLKAS original owner, sitting in the front behind a chauffeur we arranged for the day to celebrate the way TOLKA was originally used.

TOLKA at the 2012 Gravenhurst Boat Show – Photo by Timothy Du Vernet

Thanks Rick. For more information on TOLKA you can Click Here to go to the dedicated TOLKA website. the old vintage video is very cool and worth watching.


8 replies
  1. Greg Lewandowski
    Greg Lewandowski says:

    The look and lines of that Baby Gar in the header shot are unbelievable. Thanks for sharing.

  2. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    The answer to how you do it everyday is Texx doesn’t sleep. Ever. That pontoon boat story was just a cover.

  3. jeff p
    jeff p says:

    I just read the story about harold and maxine (miss canada lll) from a couple days ago. Mr Lewandowski asked if it was coming to detroit area theatres , or anywhere else for that matter. no reply Do they plan on putting it out on video. sorry i didnt post this in the original story comment area

    from a couple days ago. mr lewandowski asked when it will be coming to the detroit. no reply. do they plan on putting on video

    • Texx
      Texx says:

      I will contact our friends Harry Wilson & Jamie Smith today and ask them the question re the Harry & Lorna movie.

  4. Texx
    Texx says:

    Jeff – I e-mailed Harry Wilson this afternoon re the Harold & Lorna movie update.

    Harry said by late October they will have more information on when the movie will be released. They are also hoping to have the movie for release on CD in time for Christmas – but this needs to be confirmed.

    The next screenings of the movie will be in Ingersoll, Ontario (right on the 401, about 2.5 hrs away from Detroit) Sept 14-15.

  5. Jeff p
    Jeff p says:

    Thanks texx for the reply i know im not the only one wondering. Dont know where i came up with the harold and maxine reference.

  6. Sue & Phil Caldwell
    Sue & Phil Caldwell says:

    We just got back from the Big Bear Lake show (So. Calif.)

    Thought we would pass this along: Dave & Cheryl Anderson had to do us one up. We ran out of gas on Lke Tahoe a few weeks ago when thay were wilth us. This time we were with them on the way back from a party at Cap & Barb Peckhams when Wicked Wahine ran out of gas – IN THE DARK!!! Fortunatley it was a nice evening and Charley Brewster (who put on the best Big Bear show ever!) came to our rescue.

    • Texx
      Texx says:

      That’s a great story guys. Somehow I think I would rather run out of gas on Big Bear than Lake Tahoe…

      The conversation in Dave’s truck on the way to the show…

      Cheryl: “Dave do we need to stop and get some gas for the boat?”

      Dave: “No dear, we have lots of gas and no time to stop…”

      Cheryl: “Are you sure?”

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