Pocock Rowing Shells: An Enduring Legacy. A talk by Steve Chapin master wood boat builder.

What: The Wooden Boat Society of the San Juan Islands and Orcas Island Rowing are hosting an evening with Steve Chapin, a Port Townsend boatbuilder who has inherited the legacy of building the legendary Pocock rowing shells

When: Saturday, March 14 2015 at 7:00 pm at the Oddfellows Hall. Free admission, donations welcome.

The tradition of Pocock rowing shells began with George Pocock, a British rower who settled in the United States early in the 20th century and became famous for his red cedar rowing shells. The boats were rowed to victory in countless races, including by many Olympic gold medalists. A Pocock 8-man shell took the University of Washington crew team to victory in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, a story recounted in the bestselling book “Boys in the Boat”.

Eventually Pocock shells began to be constructed in fiberglass and carbon fiber, and Pocock Racing Shells built their last wooden boat in 2003. Fortunately the forms and templates used to build Pocock single shells were donated to the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend. Port Townsend boatbuilder Steve Chapin subsequently built a number of new single shells in the Pocock tradition as part of the Pocock Cedar Singles Project.

Join the Wooden Boat Society of the San Juan Islands and Orcas Island Rowing in welcoming Steve Chapin, who will discuss the history, building and restoration of these unique boats. Admission is free, but we welcome donations to cover costs and help support the Wooden Boat Society and Orcas Island Rowing.

The Wooden Boat Society of the San Juan Islands promotes the restoration, use and enjoyment of wooden boats. The Wooden Boat Society of the San Juan Islands was formed in 2002 to perpetuate the craftsmanship, artistry and knowledge of the maritime traditions through education, public display, restoration and construction, and entertainment. The society has a strong commitment to the care and feeding of wooden boats, their owners and those who appreciate them.

Orcas Island Rowing (OIR) is an active rowing club founded in 1996 with a boathouse on the shore of Cascade Lake in Moran State Park, and a dedicated set of all volunteer coaches. OIR offers a competitive rowing program for high school and junior high students. There are two seasons: the Fall season starts in September and ends in November, and Spring season starts in February and ends in May. OIR also offers rowing opportunities to adults. Experienced rowers can join the club and use the club boats on beautiful Cascade Lake. We periodically offer beginning sculling and sweep rowing classes.

Sadly Joie didn’t get to start her race. :-(

Sadly Joie didn’t get to start her race.

Tina said, “Joie got lined up and it was the last race of the day and everything got messed up and her boat got way off point and they started without waiting for her. So she had to row back in… It was really sad!”

Now it’s just the usual race for the ferry back to Orcas.