Live-ish From Big Sky Antique Classic Boat Show… It A Deserves Big Story.

The Big Sky Chapter of the Antique & Classic Boat Society presented the 4th Annual Antique & Classic Boat Show on the shores of Flathead Lake in Lakeside, Montana last weekend. The Big Sky Chapter is proud of the fact that after only 3 full years of operation, the club continues to be one of the fastest growing ACBS Chapters, with over 50 members from around Montana, Idaho, Washington, California and Alberta, Canada. Chapter President Alex Berry and his team of volunteers put on a first class event this year – congratulations to everyone!

The Flathead Lake area of Montana has a long history when in comes to wooden pleasure boating. In the 1930’s two local Flathead boating enthusiast’s, Ole Lee and Stan Young started their respective wooden boat building companies, Lee Craft and Stan-Craft. From 1938 thru the mid 1950’s, Lee Craft turned out a variety of wooden boats… ranging in size from 13-20 feet and built some 3,000 plus wooden boats. Stan-Craft was launched in 1933 at Flathead Lake, near Lakeside and built wooden boats at this location until World War II broke out. After the war, the Stan-Craft Boat Company resumed business in the Flathead Lake area until the wooden boat popularity gave way to fiberglass in the mid-1960’s, when Stan-Craft adapted and changed to modern materials. In 1981 Stan-Craft relocated from Montana to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho where they continue to build modern versions of the “Classic Wooden Boat.”

For a young local boat show, the diversity of boat manufacturer’s represented at this year’s event was great to see! “CINCO” is a 2004 Fish Brothers Barrelback 23′.

“LA SIRENA GORDA” (I think it means “The Fat Mermaid”) is a beautiful 1957 Chris-Craft Continental 21′. Along side is “DREAMBOAT” a 1965 Chris-Craft Cavalier 30′ owned by Jim & Kathleen Petersen from Bi
gfork, Montana.

Rick & Laura Zanto’s 1967 Riva Ariston.
ACBS President Dick Werner’s 1942 Century SeaMaid Triple Cockpit 20‘ “SWEET LOUISE”
“FULL CIRCLE” is a rare 1958 Shepherd 105 Convertible 18′. (Check out the cool manufacturer nameplate on the dash)

“ROCKETEER” was originally built in 1937 by the Reinell Boat Company (in Marysville, Washington) as a 16′ open outboard utility. In 1992 Alan Thomle extensively modified her into a 1930’s style inboard race boat utilizing a 289 Ford Interceptor V8. She now has a top speed of 44 MPH.

There were a few old woody outboards at the show, “BURPIE TIME” is a perfect 1959 Cruiser Inc. 14′ Mariner 100 with a period correct 35HP Evinrude outboard.

Bill & Julie Robbins’ 1950 Peterborough Speedster 16′ powered by a period correct Johnson 25HP
(Pull Start) Sea-Horse.

When is the last time you saw a 1955 Curly Craft Super Deluxe Runabout 14′ with a Johnson 35HP Outboard? This one belongs to Lorne & Leslie Kermath from Whitefish, Montana.

MINNIE” is a beautiful 1959 Chris-Craft Sea Skiff 22′ owned by Alex Berry (Big Sky Chapter President) and his wife Margene. (Cowboy Hats are standard issue in Montana) Arlon Hibbert came over from Pingree, Idaho with his restored 1947 Gar Wood Ensign 16′ “THE OTHER WOMAN”

“KNOCK ON WOOD” is a great example of a 1964 Chris-Craft Custom Ski 17′ and is owned by Mark & Janice Buck from Missoula, Montana.
Here’s one of Matt’s favorites – An awsome 1954 Chris-Craft Utility 22′ from down the lake in Polson, Montana, MIMI’s owners Bob and Betty Moore keep her ship shape.
Larry Shroeder heading out to take Dick Werner for a ride in his 1946 Stan-Craft 25′ Day Cruiser “THE BARB”.
Dick was impressed with the Day Cruiser. This is Dick Werner’s 12th boat show of the 15 he is planning to attend during his term a President.

As expected, there were lots of Stan-Crafts to see and enjoy on the Flathead Lake, both old and new. Here is “MOONSHINE” a modern 2008 Stan-Craft.

“ART’S TOY” is a 2006 Stan-Craft Mini Missile 29′ owned by Art & Danielle Engel.

The unique Stan-Craft Torpedo’s are always a crowd favorite.

“SEABISCUIT” was in attendance this year, a rare 1937 Chris-Craft Runabout.

After living in a barn for over 30 years, this Chris-Craft Sedan was picked up by the new owner the day before the show, so he brought it by for everyone to see. The original Scripps Model 208 6 Cylinder engine was also in tow, strapped to the back of the tow rig.

I had the pleasure of meeting Dean Sackett at the Big Sky show, the owner of this 1929 Chris-Craft 3 24′ Runabout that up until 2007 spent the last 75 years of her life in the same boat house on Lake Hopatcong, New Jersey. Stay tuned for the full story of Dean and his retirement project.
Lee Craft
(p.s. Sorry no Lyman’s at this show, but I will keep looking!)

6 replies
  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Apparently a really great show! Texx does a great job of sending photos, and reporting. I greatly enjoy his contribution to an already fun blog.


  2. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Texx, yet another great report and fabulous photos. Thanks much. You're the best! Well, WoodyBoater, you're not bad either. Keep up the great work, guys.


  3. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Back in 1974 I stupidly traded in my undle's (Oz Stoverud) 16' Sea Bryant wood boat, with 55HP Evinrude, had a steering wheel and the 2-lever throttle & gear shifter. It had a top bow paint that was Yellow with a sand texture. Gull boats took it on trade…has anyone seen it around?
    Thanks in advance,
    Dale Stoverud (

  4. Daniel Swift
    Daniel Swift says:

    I was recently given a boat very similar to 'Knock on Wood'as in the image above (Mark and Janice Buck). I would like to know firstly if anyone can tell me the stats, history etc or lead to a link. And secondly, I am in Blue Mountains (2hrs West of Sydney in the beautiful latitude of 1000 mtrs, Australia. This poses the question as to where anyone can tell me I may go to get a hold of brass/chrome fittings. The boat is body and running gear. In raw shape with stripping/motor/glass required. Is this as the charger I am restoring/a money pit..(stupid question?) anyhow any info would be much appreciated. Ship Shape to all. Dan

  5. Texx
    Texx says:

    Daniel, According to Chris-Craft – The Essential Guide by Jerry Conrad, Chris-Craft 17' Custom Ski boats were produced from 1963 to 1967 with a total production of 420 units for the same period, all powered by Chris-Craft (GM) 283 V-8 marine engines. Custom Ski's were constructed using mahogany c/w white vinyl decks originally. A similar boat was produced by Chrs-Craft in 1961 simply called a 17' Ski Boat (no Custom) which had a total production of 280 units, they were powered by either a Chris-Craft "Model K" in-line 6 or the 283 V-8. They were sold originally with natural mahogany decks, no vinyl.

    For more information you can check out the official Chris-Craft site at

    If you can locate a hull number either on a metal hull card or stamped into the wood, you can identify exactly what you have by contacting the Mariners Museum at

    I terms of hardware for the boat, it may be best to first identify exactly what you have and / or contact the many supplier's as listed here at WoodyBoater.

    Good Luck!

Comments are closed.