2015 Minneapolis Winter Boat Show – BSLOL Chapter Celebrates The Designs Of Brooks Stevens


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The Evinrude Heli-Bout designed by Brooks Stevens to showcase the 1961 Evinrude 75hp outboard motor.

IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN when the popular winter boats shows are held around the country. This is an opportunity for marine manufacturers and suppliers to unveil their new models and present their latest equipment to the boating public.

Celebrating 43 years – this year the Minneapolis Boat Show filled the Minneapolis Convention Center with a huge selection of new boats and hundreds of booths showcasing the very latest in engines, marine electronics and accessories.

Once again, the Bob Speltz Land-O-Lakes (BSLOL) Chapter ACBS was on hand to represent the Antique & Classic Boating hobby. This year the BSLOL Chapter featured an impressive display of boats featuring the work of American Industrial Designer Brooks Stevens. The Chapter also displayed a number of classic boats of various designs, hull materials and era. Minnesota correspondent Dane Anderson was on hand to capture these great photos from the show. – Texx

Brook Stevens

The 1950 Globe Mastercraft Deluxe Runabout
Owner: Joe Lepley – Annandale, Minnesota

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The Evinrude Heli-Bout
Owner: Tom Annunziata

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The Evinrude Heli-Bout was designed by Brooks Stevens to showcase the 1961 Evinrude 75hp. It appeared at the New York and Chicago boat shows and also one in California. After the boat show circuit Evinrude sold it to Brooks Stevens and it was displayed in the Brooks Stevens museum for many years.

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It passed through a couple private collectors before being acquired by the Yellowstone Club to be displayed along side several concept cars. After the demise of the Yellowstone Club the Heli-Bout was sold to a private collector who kept it until Tom was able buy it.

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1956 Cadillac Sea Lark Replica
Owner: Steve Schussler

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“PRINCESS PAIGE” 1926 Earl C. Barnes Launch
Owner: John Allen – Gull Lake, Minnesota

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“UNCAS” 1930 Chris-Craft 28′ Model 118 Convertible Sedan
Owner: Kermit Sutton – Whitefish Chain of Lakes, MN

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Minn Type

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“PELICAN” 1956 Lyman 19′ Runabout
Youth Sailing Resources, Inc.

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“The Rebecca B.” 1937 Gar Wood 19′ Runabout
Owner: Russell & Jenni Hagen – Minneapolis, MN
Restoration by: David Watts – Little Rock Boatworks

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1956 Johnson Javelin 30 hp. – 1956 Larson Falls Flyer
Owner: Alan Lindquist

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Scott McInnes of Shipwreck Boat Works was at the show with this amazing 1958 Crosby Sweptfin.

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During this years boat show, the Bob Speltz Land-O-Lakes Chapter kindly donated 1,000.00 each to SSS Mendota Sea Scouts and the Urban Boat Builders. Congratulations to both organizations.


BSLOL Chapter Steve Shoop presents the donation to SSS Mendota Sea Scouts.


Urban Boat Builders donation from BSLOL Chapter

Special thanks to Minnesota correspondent Dane Anderson for his assistance with today’s story. Also thanks to the great folks and volunteers from the Bob Speltz Land-O-Lake Chapter ACBS for hard work at the winter boat show.

The BSLOL Chapter is also hosting the big 2015 ACBS International Meetings and Show in September at Bar Harbor – Gull Lake, Minnesota. This is shaping up to be a fantastic “must attend” event. For more information, you can check out the Woods and Water website HERE. We will have more updates on the event in the coming months.


32 replies
  1. Alex
    Alex says:

    Wonderful waking up to beautiful boats, interesting details, well written copy, and a reminder of this Fall’s international show venue. Thanks to all involved in today’s offering.

  2. Rabbit
    Rabbit says:

    Thank you to all of the BSLOL volunteers who made this impressive display possible (admittedly, I wasn’t one of them.) It’s another indication that the Land of Lakes is one of the country’s true woody hotbeds. You can be assured that this fall’s ACBS International will be one not to be missed. Consider that the lakes of Northern Minnesota are the home waters to Uncas and Princess Paige and that those boats represent just a tiny sliver of the important boats in the Gull Lake area.

    While making a quick 45-minute dash through the show yesterday I couldn’t help but take a look at the new plastic and aluminum in the main hall. The Heli Bout is sane compared to the scores of $100k plus pontoon boats on display, which included a lot of faux wood. I know people like to enjoy a cocktail on a pontoon cruise (OK, I do) but can someone tell me why one needs a full wet bar with stools?

  3. Al Benton
    Al Benton says:

    What an incredible display of various styles and types of vintage boats! I look forward to attending the ACBS International Boat Show this fall and seeing some (or all) of these amazing boats at Bay Harbor in September. The BSLOL certainly knows a bit about displaying their amazing diverse collection of vintage boats.

  4. Rick
    Rick says:

    Awesome boats, thank you for the story. I’m always surprised there are no classics on display at the NY Boat Show at the Javits Center. Non at the LI Boat Show at the Coliseum or the Tobay Show In Water Show. The public around here just gets no exposure the the woody culture.

    • Dennis Mykols
      Dennis Mykols says:

      Rick, The reason, there are no Classics at the shows you mentioned, is that it takes a REAL commitment to drag your treasured beauty, out of storage (planning ahead so it is not buried in a building with 50 other boat). Then you got TWO chances to have to drive miles, to and from, the show site in snow/salt covered road. Gamble no one slides into you if the roads are bad.
      Then Clean up you rig if the roads are bad, twice.
      The Chapter then has to provide members for the long day of staging to prepare your chapters display booth before the show. AND have members be at the display each day of the show.
      After several days on your feet, then you have to tear down your display, and wait your turn to pull out your vessel out of the show hall.
      I have displayed my boats twice with our chapter and see all this hard work and commitment first hand. AND it is usually the SAME group of chapter members who head up the efforts to secure a good group of boats to display, and head up, the set up/tear down of the displays.
      My thanks and appreciation to each Chapter and their members that go the extra mile for our hobby and provide such interesting displays for the public to enjoy,
      And the real hard part each year is trying not to have the same boats on display each year. There are only a small pool of classic owners in each chapter who will subject their vessel to any winter exposure.
      Another issue at the shows you mentioned is available floor space. If the promoter can SELL every square foot of space, why would he GIVE away space to a ACBS Chapter?
      But the smart promoters, know and feature our classic displays as a DRAW to get more attendance to their boat show.
      A long answer to your question Rick, as you can see there is a lot of Chapter commitment involved to end up with what is featured today.
      And to todays featured Chapter, I think being in the far north, with the worst possible weather conditions a possibility, they still bring out so mane rare and outstanding Antique and Classic Vessels for the public to enjoy, a big thank you…

      • Joe
        Joe says:

        The BSLOL guys that displayed boats this year lucked out. The weather was mild and the roads were good taking the boats in last week and hauling them out today. It was all worth it to see the smiles and hear the great comments that these boats generated from show goers of all ages.
        I was glad to have the opportunity to share the Globe Mastercraft with show attendees. Hard to believe it was transformed from a “barn find” two years ago to the “show boat” featured at the show and in these pictures. The guys at Sunrise River did a fantastic job of resurrecting this boat.

  5. Wilson
    Wilson says:

    Great pics and explantion of what it takes to get the ole boats in and out of the show…

    But just because it is my birthday did you have to add to it by making some of the print so small ?

  6. Chuck Crosby
    Chuck Crosby says:

    Got to say that I really liked the 58 Crosby Sweptfin…
    PS: I would also like to thank everyone for their comments last week on resto costs. Your comments and strongly held opinions are helping a relative newby to this hobby.

  7. Thorn
    Thorn says:

    Has anyone ever seen the helicat run. It has to work like a gyrocopter but it could not get off of the water or it would loose thrust from the outboard. There usually is a reason for some of these designs that do not continue.
    What a great variety of boat in their show.

  8. Carla
    Carla says:

    What a fantastic display of classic boats at the Minneapolis Indoor Show! Kudos to BSLOL chapter for pulling together such an interesting and diverse assortment of classics. You guys (and gals) rock!!!

  9. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    Happy birthday to Wilson Wright, we should all be in such great shape mentally and physically. I’ll refrain from any bad lawyer jokes in your honor. Dennis is so right, difficult to find any willing to bring in a boat in winter weather let alone Minnesooooota weather. I tried for years to beg, borrow, and cajole the Atlanta Boat Show promoters to see the benefit of having us display boats and they did for a while but it was a thankless chore that no one is willing to undertake. Another issue is determining which boats are “candidates” – do you put only your best foot forward or display user boats whose owners ARE willing and sometimes insistent but are not the quality your chapter or the show would appreciate. Ah, the politics of chapter life. By the way Wilson – if you want larger print just hold down the left or right control key (CTRL) at bottom corner of keyboard and press down on the “+” key simultaneously several times until your text size is comfortable to read. To return it to smaller size press the CNTL and “-” key to reduce the size. If you have a “scrolling wheel” on your mouse, you can depress the CNTL key and rotate your scroll wheel back and forth to increase text size.

    • Texx
      Texx says:

      Rick – I think Wilson Wrights birthday should be designated as a National Holiday… Matt Smith is in DC – He could get the wheels (oars) in motion.

      • floyd r turbo
        floyd r turbo says:

        Or how about a stamp for Wilson, Mr. CCABC (Chris Craft Antique Boat Club Brass Bell editor for God knows how many years. And a contest for the stamp design.

  10. Dave Bortner
    Dave Bortner says:

    The transport is a piece of cake, really. We just wrap “Uncas” in moving blankets, shrinkwrap over that, haul it down to the Convention Center, carefully unwrap, and reverse the process for the trip back (today).

  11. Bill Anderson
    Bill Anderson says:

    I went up to the show Friday to see Toms Heli boat, The propellers are run on 110V electricity,, I think we decided it has never been in the water,, it is a true original and very unique,, the star of any show – Bill

  12. Brian Aiken
    Brian Aiken says:

    First, great article, thanks. Second, a bit on Brooks Stevens. He was a friend of my father mostly through the design work Brooks did for Miller Brewing Co. He designed the famous “soft cross” logo as well as the “new offices” circa 1960.
    Dad was quite fond of Brooks and I learned about many of his projects as they unfolded. The Excailber a Mercedes clone, the Oscar Mayers Miennermobile, Jeepsters and many others.. Just cool stuff.
    Now somewhat to the point: Brooks also designed signage for miller and other companies and had an ongoing relationship with Lakeside plastics, which made signs by the tens of thousands.
    As such, Miller execs got a huge box of Lakeside toys at Christmas each year.. It was something we looked forward to.
    One year, around 1961 I got a little hovercaraft almost identical to the Helicat except for the prop. You blew into a rubber hose and it would float barely above a smooth surface.
    I’m not certain but as soon as I saw the photo above, I thought of that toy.
    Here’s a great link to vintage Brooks Stevens designs..It’s a bit clunky to navigate [“enter site” go to each type of design…} Still great nostalgia about a breakthrough designer for folks like us

  13. Mr. Andreas Jordahl Rhude
    Mr. Andreas Jordahl Rhude says:

    Another excellent display of vintage watercraft provided by BSLOL ! I am so glad I was able to be involved for many years as a grunt laborer and graduating up to be the captain of the show for a number of years. It was a very difficult endeavor but all and all a rewarding experience.

    To get the 8-10 boats needed to fill the display and make it interesting, it takes MONTHS of work and asking dozens and dozens of people. 30-50 people are asked each year if they would like to participate to be able to get the 8-10 watercraft. And it takes hundreds of hours to coordinate it all. I know, I did it for many years.

    The previous owner of the Minneapolis Boat Show (General Sports run by Dave Perkins) must be commended for the foresight in realizing the benefit of having a classic watercraft display. The current owner (NMMA) took awhile to be convinced of the value, but they have jumped on board. Jennifer Thompson and Darren Envall must be mentioned and thanked.

    Thanks to the current BSLOL volunteers and special hats off to the people willing to bring their boats out into the cold and snow during January to spread the word about classics.

    Mr. Andreas Jordahl Rhude

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