Twin Peaks – Ventuno 21 Runabout Update And Riva Fun On Lake Dora


On Thursday we reported seeing a Neo-Classic fiberglass runabout that arrived at Lake Dora for the boat show. It’s attractive (and unusually fresh) classic stying was very interesting, set off by a pair of big twin outboards for power. Soon after the images were published, we received a number of inquiries from folks wanting to know more about the sleek runabout.

Fellow Woody Boater – Herb Hall from Sierra Boat Company (home of the annual Lake Tahoe Concours d’Elegance) offered to investigate…

Texx – Here’s what I learned – The builder, Gary Mac Norius from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida admits to having too much time on his hands. The boat is built with balsa core construction laid over a mold, and glassed inside and out. It was finished with automotive paint.

Engines are modern 1981 Mercury inline 6 cylinder 115 HP each (230 HP total) and painted with vintage Mercury “Cloud White” and have 1961 Mercury 800 stainless & chrome trim and modified cowlings to complement vintage look. Gary commented – “Not many 12 cylinder boats at the show this year…”

Gary also commented that this prototype was built over a period of 5 years.

Gary’s company – Classic Glass Restorations specializes in 50’s fiberglass runabouts using modern epoxies and composites. For more information you can contact him at –

Gary Mac Norius
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
(954) 443-9031

Ace Reporter Herb Hall preparing to file his report from the Big Chair at the Woody Boater tent on Friday. Thanks Herb, it would be fun to this boat in the water… preferably from the passenger seat! – Texx

Then, after a busy morning of reporting Herb and Matt decided to take a Riva Aquarama for spin around Lake Dora… This could be the first ever time a classic Italian Riva was piloted by someone sporting “Sons of Varnish” colors.

Woody Boater & the Woodyboatress relaxing in the Aquaramas Playpen… (Is it just me or does Matt seem to get all the good assignments for some reason, don’t you think? – Texx)

Chris from Hagerty Marine Insurance along for the afternoon Riva ride, to soak up some of that glorius Florida sunshine.

The Woodyboatress likes the big Riva Aquarama, Likes it ALOT – Matt!

Alex Watson snapped this nice shot of Alan Weinstein and friends aboard a classic Riva on Lake Dora Thursday. Alan Weinstein Associates / Riva Guru exclusively caters to the needs of vintage (pre 1999) Riva boat owners, prospective vintage Riva owners, service providers, surveyors, and marinas, etc. – you can click here to learn more.

Thanks again to Herb Hall and Alex Watson for sending us the images of the Ventuno 21 for this story. The elegant Riva Aquarama is the featured marque at the 2012 Lake Tahoe Concours d’Elegance, at Sierra Boat Company in Carnelian Bay, California. For more information click here.

Stay tuned to Woody Boater for more daily updates from the 2012 Lake Dora boat show in Tavares, Florida.


8 replies
  1. Randy Rush-Captain Grumpy
    Randy Rush-Captain Grumpy says:

    Any idea how much the plastic fantastic is? What kind of money would George Jetson pay?

  2. Paul H.
    Paul H. says:

    I think that Gary’s boat is hand-down the coolest boat here. It is just so unique and creative. In theme it reminds me of some of the resto-mods or customs that you see at Barrett Jackson. I am glad someone has brought that approach to boating, and I would love to see it in the water.

    And Randy – whatever he would pay it is probably too much! No luck with the Carver emblems yet, but will keep trying.

  3. Alex
    Alex says:

    I think Gary will spend much of the day wiping saliva off his creation.  Then again, if you look at his design, you’ll see there is no completely flat deck surface.  And what approaches flat is incredibly polished.  Could it be he sculpted it this way, knowing admirers would have trouble controlling their pavlovian responses?  That would make his plans simply droolproof!

  4. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    What ever happened to the Matt vs Jim Staib vs the hungry gators “climbing Thayer IV’s ladder” shoot out?

  5. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    I can’t imagine how much sanding Gary had to do to get those flowing lines so fair on the Ventuno 21.  All I can say is “oooh my aching arms and shoulders”.  
    But keep rubbing it in for all of us not there with the “having fun wish you were here” shots.  Another awesome show put on by Sunnyland, Terry Fiest and their multitude of volunteers.

  6. Lee Wangstad
    Lee Wangstad says:

    Gary is one of the true artists in the classic boat field. In the past he’s brought his 1957 SwitzerCraft Shooting Star riding on a deep-vee hull that’s been crafted to the bottom. It’s a screamer for sure. I’ve been watching this develop for the last couple of days wondering where this boat came from. When I heard Gary’s name mentioned, I just started nodding my head, thinking, of course. What a great statement to the jet age.


  7. ian
    ian says:

    This Ventuno 21 is a technically a V12 and I hope that he gets an invite to the Lake Tahoe show as it is equally nice in its design and execution. It is a conversation piece that rivals more then a few antique and classic boats that would be at any show including Tahoe!

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