Jake’s Fave Five

In 2022 Highlights, Festival Highlights

Before he was hired here (and helped us improve event security), Northwest Maritime Center Executive Director Jake Beattie brought boats, volunteered, and snuck into Wooden Boat Festival for the better part of a decade. “I’m a festival fanboy.”

After getting him off of his soapbox (“What do you mean I only get five?”), Jake shared his top five can’t-miss activities for this year’s festival:

Harbormaster Tetris on Thursday
“It’s not technically part of the festival, but watching the Harbormasters push and pull these boats into the harbor is mesmerizing. This year we’ve got a lot of our local high schoolers helping out. Powerful maritime experiences!”


Multihull Panel on the Adventure Stage
“All of the presentations are incredible, but boat dorks should get in line early for this one. Friday at 4:30 PM is one of those incredible moments that only happen at Wooden Boat Festival: a panel discussion between boat designing legend Paul Bieker, Adrift author Steve Callahan, multihull wizard Russell Brown, and Ryan Finn—who recently broke the record for the smallest boat to complete the route from New York to San Francisco, around Cape Horn, on a proa that Russell designed and built. Russell never agrees to do these things, hates crowds; I mean he named his boat Incognito… Set your watches, it’s going to be incredible!”

Getting on the Water
“What’s better than getting on a boat at a boat festival? This year there are more opportunities than ever to get on the water! You can go row a longboat, try out a paddleboard, and go sailing on the schooner Adventuress. All of that, AND this year you can get on the water on a cool little catboat or a motor boat ride on the Admiral Jack. We also have these adorable little paddlewheelers for kids to try out. Super fun—get boaty!”

Late Nights in Bar Harbor
“From Thursday’s ‘Locals night’ to Saturday’s blowout, Bar Harbor is the spot: great music, spectacular beer, and a chance to share a pint or cut a rug with friends and maritime legends. Late nights though… inspiration and mistakes can look remarkably the same! I mean Race to Alaska was conceived during a Bar Harbor session… who knows, maybe other things! It’s harder every year, but I still stay to the end of the music and merry-making. So much fun, and mercifully for me it’s closing at 11 this year.”

Sunday Sail By
“It’s bittersweet because it means the festival is over, but Sunday’s Sail By is an incredible sight—300+ boats sailing back and forth in Port Townsend Bay. If you squint you can almost imagine what it must have looked like 100 years ago. Breathtaking.”