What In The Heck Was Classic Boating Magazine Thinking?


The Woody Boater “Party Barge”. “Suzy” 1960 Chris Craft 24 Sportsman, 430 Van Ness Lincoln Engine. Suzy the Woody boatress and Karen Harrison at the helm out on a fun morning on Lake Dora!

About two days ago I got a call from Fellow Woody Boater and pal Seth Katz of Katz’s marina, he said, so your famous now? I thought, why yes, I am the Woody Boater HA! Cue the crickets…… No.. Seth informed me that Suzy, and Suzy and Karen Harrison were on the cover of Classic Boating magazine. I spit out my coffee. What? What? Yup,  Suzy is on the cover. Our beloved mahogany barge and gas pit,  are on the cover of this latest issue of Classic Boating. I don’t know why this is so exciting. I mean, she is plastered all over the web. She is even been made into fine art . Why is this some sort of coronation. So I thought..

I had to do my goesintas on this one!

Like Jethro, I dug deep into my 6th grade edumacation brain and thought, Why, what the hell? As Seth put it, you have a cover boat my friend! I suppose Seth should know what that means. He has a ton of cover boats.. several tons to be more precise. (We bought the beauty from Seth last summer.. And he had refinished her right before Dora.)

Why does being on the cover matter? It matters because Classic Boating magazine is the premiere publication when it comes to featuring the best of the best out there in the classic boat universe. They are not daily news, or up to date anything. They are about beautiful photos and stories of fantastic boats. All featured in a simple timeless style. I think of Classic Boating as getting a new classic boat book 4 times a year. I also love the fact that i have every issue in my book case at the river and spend hours reading. It’s funny how we here at Woody Boater sometimes will think we have found some sort of treasure, only to find out that 5 years ago Classic Boating featured that boat or person. But to be on a cover? What were they thinking? I suppose two beautiful women in a perfect wood boat out on stunning Lake Dora in the early morning light, is a no brainer. Note, my fat double chinned mug ain’t even a mile within that shot. I may be ugly, but I aint dumb.. I got a 6th grade education!

Here is the inside spread!

If you want to see more and do not have a prescription to Classic Boating Magazine or like me, need to renew your need! They do NOT have a web site. Old School…  I respect that.. They do have a facebook page. Click Here, and if you want to get your prescription for a dose of varnish and ink, you can get that here. Tell them Woody Boater sent ya and you will get… Nothing.. But I will feel better that we appreciate the plug on the cover!

Classic Boating Magazine

280 Lac La Belle Dr, Oconomowoc, WI 53066

(262) 567-4800

Classic Boating Facebook Page click Here and LIKE them..

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

    First off, don’t forget that woodyboater is the “center of the wooden boat universe” and Classic Boating is merely a magazine. I bet more eyeballs will see that cover image here today than will see the physical magazine version.

    Now for the magazine thingy… If I want a copy, what kind of doctor do I need to go to in order to get a prescription? Cant I bypass the doc and just get a subscription over the counter from the publisher? I know this hobby is a disease but…

  2. Bill
    Bill says:

    and to top it off the pic was taken before you put the top with the correct zipper on the boat and they still put it on the cover anyway. amazing

  3. matt
    matt says:

    “and to top it off” I get it! Actually I took the top off. And all other stuff, Suzy and Karen put on simple graphic dresses. But we had no idea the shot would make it that far. Stunned is an understatement

  4. Greg Lewandowski
    Greg Lewandowski says:

    I don’t know what picture I like better. The one of Suzy and the girls, or the one of you at the breakfast table in your younger days! Congratulations.

  5. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    BTW, that boat looks like it is HUGE in the pictures. Are the women really small or is Suzy that much bigger than her u22 cousins?

      • matt
        matt says:

        It’s Massive! Just under the limit for trailering without a permit. The Trailer rides PERFECT. When I took the shot I did not realize its longer than the truck, its very strange. In the water its small. On the highway. A block of varnished mahogany. All 20 coats.

      • Rick
        Rick says:

        I think that is a picture of the Tonka Truck and Matel boat that can be bought in the online store. At least it sure looks like it.

  6. Paul H.
    Paul H. says:

    The ladies are pretty small (5’3″ ish I would estimate and slender) but the boat is a tank. It is MUCH bigger than a U 22. It is much like our bulbous 24′ Sea Skiff, very beamy and lots of freeboard. If Matt and I were in it, not only would it not be on the cover, the boat would look a lot smaller!

    By the way, these are a great boat, under appreciated if you ask me. Matt’s is one of the best out there as well.

  7. matt
    matt says:

    Paul is 100 right. And extremely undervalued. If you look on Antique Boat Center they have several, and they are bargains. With an inner PLYWOOD hull, not planks. The outer is planks. The third seat is a must as is a larger engine. So the stock 283 aint the way to go. Drop a 350 in there and you are set. Or there is a twin engine version. Its a beast. But no one gets wet and you get the full Woody action.

    • m-fine
      m-fine says:

      I would have to imagine it would be only acceptably powered with a 350 if you plan to fill the seats. I think if repowering, I would go big block, even if it’s not one as classicly cool as your Lincoln. Paul Pletcher’s 427 project thread on the Buzz comes to mind. I bet he would have some good thoughts on how to make a boat like that motivate will a full load!

      Twins would perform, but they take up room, cost more and you are twice as likely to need to fix something.

      • matt
        matt says:

        A 427 with some tweaks would be amazing. you are right, the big block makes a nice difference. Its heavy, but makes a nice ride. And hell, it sounds like a BEAST. No issues with power full of folks. We have had 9 on board and she does not even know it. I am not sure what to change, its really dialed in right.

        • Paul H.
          Paul H. says:

          You got a rebuilt 430, the original engine – why change anything? While not a modern engine with tons of speed parts available, it is a torque monster and that is what this thing needs. I think you have all the motor that boat can use. Just keep enjoying it!

          • m-fine
            m-fine says:

            I think we are discussing what to do with the other ones on the market that have a 283. They could still be a good buy if you swap the small displacement small block for something that will perform more like Matt’s torque machine. Getting that beast with 9 people and drinks up on plane is going to take some mid rpm torque.

    • m-fine
      m-fine says:

      Sadly, we have 3 lifts, all with 24′ canopies and a 4000lb weight limit. Looks like a 25 is not in my near future although I can certainly see the appeal and utility.

  8. chad
    chad says:

    I need to renew my subscription. Thanks for the reminder.

    Suzy looks like a lot of fun. Congrats on the cover!

  9. Ronald
    Ronald says:

    Congratulations, got my magazine yesterday, great pictures, We rode in a 24′ sportsman 10 years ago at the Hiawassee Ga. show and I am thinking it had a 454 Mercruiser, owner said with all that free board one has to get really drunk to fall overboard, ha, very close to the hull of a ’65 24 Sea Skiff we used to have. Just as you stated looks huge in the garage and on the trailer but much smaller in the water. A great boat.

  10. matt
    matt says:

    I can see a new 454 in it.. Something about old detroit metal makes it all seem right though.. The sound is amazing!

  11. Dick Dow
    Dick Dow says:

    A classic case of a beautifully proportioned boat that looks “small” when no one is in it and it is sitting at rest in the water. Add people and the actual size comes into focus.

    Exactly the opposite of those 30’s and 40’s ads where the shots of the people were shrunk before being positioned in the boat. My 1936 Garwood catalog makes the 20′ Sedan Utility look like it’s 30′ long and 8′ wide!

    You’re a lucky man Matt!

  12. matt
    matt says:

    I had not thought of that. Its true. Ya look at those little 17 footers and folks look huge in them, makes the boats look very small.

    • Rick
      Rick says:

      Those little 17’s FEEL REALLY SMALL out in the bay or sound. Then again we can go all day on 5 gallons of gas albeit slowly.

      • m-fine
        m-fine says:

        Hmmm, I can go a full hour, albeit slowly in my 16 footer on 5 gal. I bet Matt’s thirsty Lincoln in the big 25 footer gets better miles per gallon below 15 mph than I do. I am slowly coming to the conclusion that only a complete moron would buy a ski-jet.

        • Rick
          Rick says:

          You can always build a really cool jacuzzi that you back it down into for double duty. And by the way you’re not a moron it’s a “Lifestyle” choice.

  13. Gary
    Gary says:

    I have heard of the better half, now it is the smarter half too. The ladies were as usual ahead of every one else.
    And Dow, rstore that Gar Wood now!

  14. Carla
    Carla says:

    Ok, fellas…whose REALLY looking at the boat! U’ve got the two hotties, Karen and Suzy, “making” the boat look spectacular. We all love our wooden boats but when one can dress it up like my gal pals, it’s golden!

    • Texx
      Texx says:

      Dane – Matt will have to confirm this, but I think it was either misplaced or it fell off somewhere while in Tavares.

  15. Josh
    Josh says:

    I think this is a case of function over design. No one needs a classic boat, so it’s about getting out on the water and enjoying your life at that moment with as many friends and family as you can fit.

  16. Randy
    Randy says:

    She is a sharp looking craft, thats’ for sure — and, to be a ‘Cover Girl’ to boot!

    I just hope you have the proper documentation for the boat in that picture, cuz in 30 years when discussions arise about ‘that’ boat in the On Golden Cover shot we don’t want any other boat trying to muscle in on the glory.

  17. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    My 24 Sportsman had the original 283 and performed surprisingly well with 4 ppl. Eight or nine would make it a little sluggish, especially if they were of Matt’s girth, lol. I picked up a 350 to swap out the 283. Have yet to try out my 24 w/350 as it needs a complete refinish. Big block would sound nice but don’t think it would add that much more for the fuel burned.

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