The 2011 Woody Boater State Of The Union.


Tavaras Florida 2011 - this is my favorite shot of the year. Just 3 months away!

My fellow Woodyboaterions.. I sit here this morning overlooking the magnificence of Lake Cyberspace. And take this moment of reflection to pass on to you our current state of the union.. Time passes by so fast as we all age. We forgot to take notice back in October… We turned 4 years old, that right, 4 years ago I sat down in front of my computer and said, what the hell.. 12 year old girls can do this.. So can I.. It was not as easy as I thought, and I learned one thing.. 12 year old girls are smart.. But along the way, we grew.. reader by reader.. one at a time, from just word of mouth. I recall the first 1,000 hits.. took months.. then 10,000 in one year.. amazing, stuff. Last fall on our third year, we decided to grow a bit, change web formats and ask for sponsorship help to see how far this crazy dream can go.. We set out to reach 500,000 hits.. that was the goal.. And it was ambitious since in 2010 our hits totaled 250,000 I had faith in my self for the first time in years, and faith in Texx and the gang that makes all this happen.. And most of all, our sponsors had faith.. to be honest after they all jumped in, I just sat in the corner and stared out the window in amazement that this was happening.. You can not imagine how much fun this is for Texx and I to do…. We talk at 3 AM many a morning setting up for the next day.. It has never felt like work.. I thank all of you for that.. Now..

The state of our union.. As stated, we set out to have 500,000 hits, I am proud to say that this year.. 2011 we have close to 4,200,000 hits… Thats right.4.2 million, with over 1 million visits.. and roughly 60,000 unique visitors.. On any given day 20,000 hits with around 4,000-7,000 visits.. This is all from our server and Google analytic’s. Wyoming still.. crickets… Africa gives us more real traffic.. Speaking of which, we did weed through all the search Robots and spambots.. We average over 1500 spam comments a day. We are around 1800 stories and now on a dedicated server.We are on every page of any classic boat image search…and climbing in search status in more terms daily..

The costs.. Now, since this is a private web site, disclosing costs seems strange, but, since in a way you all are Woody Boaters.. And contribute to this. Here are the numbers. We made $29,000 in sponsorship money last year. The cost of doing WoodyBoater was $34,000.. Between, Party’s, Travel, Cameras, Hotel Rooms, Web Hosting, T shirts, Contributions to AVON, it all added up much faster than we all thought.. I know many of you like the tshirts.. We break even on those at 15 bucks, and shipping takes it tole on time, so we are in the works with a fulfillment house that can handle all that. But it’s not a money maker. None of this… Cheaper than owning a boat though.. HA… Ugh…So.. How do we continue? It’s simple.. You just read, play and comment, tell folks about Woody Boater, link us to your site.. Facebook “like” us.. What ever you can do to grow readership..When we show up to shows, those free press passes help more than you can imagine.. With close to 20 shows visited a year..  But in the end, WE JUST WANT YOUR EYEBALLS… no biggy… it’s all about your eyeballs.. The more eyeballs, the more our sponsors get out of it. Marketers want to be seen, noticed and shopped..  And for gods sake, shop our sponsors FIRST. Tell them you saw them on Woody Boater.. We are very careful about who is a sponsor, these are GOOD companies with great reputations. They are not just there for money.. . The good ones deserve to be prosperous.They of course don’t want your gooey eyeballs as payment..

No caption, just a boat shot to keep you from falling asleep.

The future. The future looks brite. We are growing at a nice clip. Our readers are younger than most other classic boat audiences..35-60 years old so they are not dying.. I think… And we are on top of technology as much as we can be within relevance and reason.. No twitter, no real need since twitter does not really apply.. We are also making some subtle design changes.. In fact have made several in the past week.. Nav Bar moved up top, More favorite of all time stories, from 10 to 20, We have de linked over 50 links and will be doing more since Google thinks we are a link farm and de-values us for that.. Sorry.. The left side will be for community, clubs, Boat Buzz and good things, the right for sponsors and the center will stay the same with some tweaks.

I hope you keep enjoying Woody Boater, we have some fun plans for next year regarding more Shoot Outs, a big event in Algonac in June, and of course the mother of all events.. Tavaras with the grand unveiling of the On Golden Pond main Picture Boats with Katz’s marina on what will be the 30th anniversary of the films premiere. Thanks again, for reading and making this a joy to do each morning.


Matt & Texx

40 replies
  1. Allen
    Allen says:

    Great summary……this site is so addictive……and so incredible……we all thank you both for keeping the hobby growing and fun……and of course supporting great causes like Woodie Boobies……no one complains about the prices of your shirts etc except there arent enough of them because their popularity sells you out so quick. Think we were all hoping you had items available for Christmas ideas for our boater babes to get us, fire extinguisher water bottles, T shirts, etc…….thanks again guys…..keep up the great site.

  2. Jack Schneiberg
    Jack Schneiberg says:

    Matt & Texx;

    What a fine job you’ve both done at making this sight a daily part of my day. Oh….and my thanks to the Woody Boatress also……I suspect without her blessing……You’d still be running that old Barrel Back around in your spare time instead of doing this website. Are you sure you have your priorities straight?

  3. The Central Scrutinizer
    The Central Scrutinizer says:

    T-shirts!!!??? I’ve come here several times a week for several months now and I did not know you were selling shirts. By the way, congratulations on the success and all those numbers. I’m right in the middle of your demographic (50). I’m cursed with a January birthday and just like my parents, my wife buys me things for Christmas and then decides I don’t need it until my birthday. Maybe there is time to order a T-shirt if I can find the link 🙂

  4. Rick
    Rick says:

    WOW, if you’re only loosing 5000 a year it is much cheaper than owning a boat. Between what I don’t tell my wife I spend and her figuring she may as well spend an equal amount without my input I would be way ahead doing a blog. So looking forward to the party on Friday. Hope there are some Buffalo wings and pigs-in-a-blanket there. Going to put my cooler filled with ice and beer next to the computer so I can stay at the party while getting a fresh cold one. Exactly how many of us logged on at the same time will it take to crash this site? I guess we would all be party crashers then. WOO HOO, PARTY ON!!!!! It will be nice to get out for a while…….wait……to get out I’ll have to move the laptop outside. Hope it doesn’t snow.

    • Dennis J. Mykols
      Dennis J. Mykols says:

      Congrats on all the hard work, and fine job you guys do EACH and EVERY day. I am also into classic muscle cars, and checked in every day to see what was going on. In the past two years, I got back into Classic boats, found your great site, and I do not think I have log into a car site in several months… It’s all your fault!!!
      Keep up the great work, good stories, and more t-shirts! My WoodyBoater t-shirt in sooo worn out, I do not think I can wear it in publik..
      Merry Christmas to all the fellow WoodyBoaters out there.

      “Old School”

      • m-fine
        m-fine says:

        For the Christmas party, I am willing to go all out and bring Buffalo Chicken wings…wait for it….ON A STICK!

        Oh yeah, I know you can hardly contain the excitement now, but there’s more! Yes, I will even whip up a batch of high end woodboater wing sauce with Grey Poupon for the Garwood, Hacker and Riva guys. There will be another “special sauce” for the Century Arabian owners and supporters, but I will not reveal the ingredient list for that one until after the party.

  5. ranger
    ranger says:

    We wake up to you each morning and visit you each night before the computer is put to sleep…thank you for everything you do…from the stories to the tears from laughing too hard to the pictures.

  6. Al Benton
    Al Benton says:

    Matt & Texx,

    Well, I just had a cool comment all ready to submit when I must have hit the wrong key and it’s gone into cyberspace.

    I just wanted to thank you for creating this state-of-the-art means of improving the flavor of any brand of coffee. Mine tastes much better when sipping it while reading your daily posts.

    I am honored to have been a very small part of this in the early days with those weekly posts. It was humbling to see just how much effort and dedication is required to post great stuff daily as Matt & Texx have managed to do every day of the week, month, year for the past 4 years.

    Congratulations to both of you for being the visionaries of the future. And a huge Thank You to you and to your great sponsors.

    • Al Benton
      Al Benton says:

      Oh, I forgot. Thank You to all the folks that respond to posts with comments! Our collective comments become as much a part of the Daily Posts as the posts alone.

  7. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    Congrats on the WELL DESERVED success. You guys do a great job. Day after day the stories remain interesting the vast majority of the time. While Texx and some of the guest writers are sometime a bit unoriginal in their spelling, most of the time the content is more than good enough to make up for it.

    You should really consider having some merchandise available at price levels that can add some support to the site. If T shirts need to be $20 or $25, I would still buy one especially if I don’t have to travel to a show to get it. Hats, sweatshirts and maybe a Type IV throwable flotation device would find their way into my virtual cart as well. You could even work on a new partnership with ACBS where failure to adequately display your official type IV cushion will result in a 5 point deduction. I bet that will lead to brisk sales and increased awarness of the site. A real win win!

  8. RiverRat
    RiverRat says:

    I thought I thanked you guys last month. Oh what the hell, Thanks again. Look foward to maybe being able to get a tshirt since shows are hard to attend. Plus with all the shoot outs it is safer at home.

  9. Rabbit
    Rabbit says:

    Congratulations, Matt and Texx. You can tell that a creative man started this site. You keep it so fresh. And you also don’t get enough credit for how great this site looks… your choice of images is fantastic. Definitely has the art director’s touch. And if you need any more evidence of that, just check you speling.

  10. Allen
    Allen says:

    Not to mention the cool blue/khaki/white captains hats you found from the original manufacture in the USA…..I always gets comments on it……keep the stuff going and maybe put the boater babe to work running the store….MS Dry Docks !!!

  11. Wicked Wahine
    Wicked Wahine says:

    Matt, Texx. Both of you make the ownership of a wooden boat more enjoyable every day. It was a pleasure to meet both of you in Tahoe this year, and I can`t wait for the 2012 season to start. MAHALO!

  12. Philip Andrew
    Philip Andrew says:

    Matt and Texx, youve created something of enormous global value. Its fun, its interesting and yes I agree with Allan, its addictive. The cool thing is you have extended the hobbies season. Its year round now. Woody Boater is the best boating experience bar actually boating. Sometimes its actually been better than boating. Its the first thing I do early every morning when the rest of the house is sound asleep. I get twitchy if I miss a post and if Im traveling Its the first thing I check on the iphone when I land.
    For the reader and part time participant its unbelievably good value.
    Matt your design ability is truly outstanding. Really you have an exquisite talent. Some of the headers youve designed are knockout. Spelling aint your strong point but thats whats good about the way it all works, its added character for sure.
    Texx your stories are well crafted and beautifully considered and structured. You two are the best Art Director and Writer team in WoodyBoaterville.
    Thanks from the bottom of the world.

  13. Alex
    Alex says:

    “Does anyone still wear a hat?”
    – Elaine Stritch

    Why yes, you two do. And we thank you for it.

    And we thank you for everything else you do to make owning a bunch of crusty, stodgy, obstinate, decaying, moody, loud, outmoded, cantankerous, unreliable, expensive, fragile, vulnerable, finicky, belligerent, and impractical vessels (and I’m not just talking about Arabians here) more uplifting, more fun, more funny, more cool, more relevant, and…

    …in a word (well, four words)…

    Way More Worth It!

  14. ARRRGH! and Pumpkin
    ARRRGH! and Pumpkin says:

    PROUD to be a part of your continuing success! Woody Boater is the Bomb! (Stop laughing. Im trying to sound younger and hipper!)

  15. Greg Lewandowski
    Greg Lewandowski says:

    I was glad to hear I was just one year out of your demographic age range. I will let you guess at what end!
    You guys do us all proud. Keep up the good work. I am really looking forward to what you have in mind for Algonac 2012. The suspense is killing me.


  16. Randy Rush-Captain Grumpy
    Randy Rush-Captain Grumpy says:

    I dont think I can add anything that hasnt been said already but thanks for your hard work!

  17. steve bunda
    steve bunda says:

    Thanks to Woody Boater! It’s all about the spirit of the wood boat as it rides the waves, as one can only imagine the birth of the boat at the hands of skilled crafts people! The next thought is how did the Chris Craft make it through the fiberglass stage of boating without meeting abandonment . How many fun rides and faimly experinces did the old girl see, she must have a woody soul!

  18. John
    John says:

    You guys are the second thing I check every morning. Not saying what the first is. I’ve recommended you to numerous friends and have had many thanks for the info. What a great site, you are the default website for me, thanks.

  19. DON & MOLLY
    DON & MOLLY says:

    It has been a great year. Let’s keep it going, should be pretty easy, everybody loves wood boats. Normal people anyways. Molly and I have more great stories to share.
    Everybody have a great Holiday Season.

  20. John Baas
    John Baas says:

    A day without Woody Boater is like a day without….’

    Seriously…the first thing in the morning and the last thing at night. Keeping the motivation up to continue a project is tough in the winter. The site does the trick. Thanks!

  21. John Baas
    John Baas says:

    A day without Woody Boater is like a day without….

    Seriously…the first thing in the morning and the last thing at night. Keeping the motivation up to continue a project is tough in the winter. The site does the trick. Thanks!

  22. Phil Widmer
    Phil Widmer says:

    Hello Matt,

    I’m sure like many others that read this web site I appreciate the quick pick me up I get while reading in the morning.

    In response to your request for “…WE JUST WANT YOUR EYEBALLS…” Your certainly have mine and for the record to help out with the state of the union of woodyboaterville, This past Febuary my wife and I added a set of eyeballs to the union and we are expecting another set in April 2012. I would like to see how many other readers of are that devoted to maintaining the state of the union in woodyboaterville!

    RICH WILCOX says:

    A year ago I knew very little about classic wooden powerboats. I had spent the previous forty years messing around with sailboats and fiberglass fishing boats. A local boatyard here in San Diego was going to cut up a Southcoast 23′ sleeper (identical to a Lyman 23 but built in Newport Ca. in a 1957) when a buddy and I took guardian ship of her. Your site has become a daily inspiration to me as well as a great source of information from all the other restorers and vendors. We got the boat running and I took my daughter out for a ride over Thanksgiving on the bay. Thanks for your help. Rich

  24. John Rothert
    John Rothert says:

    Matt is the Jon Wilson of the 21 century, if you don’t get it, you are not paying attention.
    Many thanks,
    Merry Christmas and a Woody New Year….
    John in Va.

  25. Rich and Wiley
    Rich and Wiley says:

    Not only do my wife Wiley and I enjoy reading WB most every day, but Matt and Texx have run two stories I submitted covering North Coast Ohio ACBS events this year…and we started the year by buying Matt’s barrel-back, Sylvia — the first boat we have ever owned.

    So we owe you thanks for the great website, and even more thanks for helping us connect to the wooden boat community so quickly in our first year of woody boating. We already feel like part of the WoodyBoater family.

    Can’t wait to hear about Algonac 2012!

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