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Each year there is a new feature or exciting edition to the Gravenhurst Boat Show and we all wait eagerly for that day to arrive!!!! This year I was excited to be part of the celebration of classic glass on July 7th.

As a lifelong cottager, north of Huntsville I learned to waterski behind a 1957 Lakefield cedar strip with a 35 H.P. Johnson Seahorse and those powerful memories seem like yesterday.
My father was in the marine industry and sold both Peterborough and Lakefield cedar strip boats as well as the early entries into the fiberglass production.

Every August my brother and I would venture down to the CNE for one of our many trips but our focus was not the rides and the midway but rather the CNE Aquarama Waterski Show that in those years ran four shows a day and we never missed one.
J-Craft boats were the exclusive tow boats with Johnson outboards pulling all the various ski acts. The dream of owning one of these legendary boats was created at this venue. Who says sponsorship and product placement don’t work??

When Greg Martin and Mike Gridley from the ACBS reached out to me, to be the coordinator for the classic glass segment, I was honoured and very enthused to be involved in this venture.

Production of fiberglass boats started in the 1940’s but really caught the attention of the market when they mirrored the 1950’s styling of the auto industry with great exterior fins and chrome like dashes.

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After accepting my new role, I reached out to my fellow classic glass friends. A top restorer/industry guru of these boats as well as friend was Ronnie Haylock. Ronny was always available to fellow enthusiasts and a man who helped out many in the boating industry. Ronny was so excited about the celebration of classic glass at the upcoming show that he had plans to restore a unique boat for the show!!
I would talk to Ronny on a weekly basis and he was like a kid before Christmas when looking forward to the July 7th classic glass celebration.
As many of you are aware Ronny passed away this past winter and in his memory and honour an award for the best classic glass entry was developed.

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July 7th was a true celebration of classic glass with twenty-six entries on land and in water, classic glass had quite a presence!!!
The oldest boat was 1957 Glastron in bright yellow and appropriately called “Banana Split” and wide variety of runabouts, performance and ski boat models were on display.

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Classic glass was displayed in water at “C” dock and the enthusiasm from boat entrants and the show attendees was incredible. The “curb appeal” of these boats with fins and bright colours was outstanding.
I heard many times, “I am going to bring my boat next year” or “my friend will bring his boat next year”

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The Ronny Haylock winner was “Stand by Me” a spectacular 1959 Glastron with twin 35h.p. Johnson Seahorses and matching teal Tee Nee trailer.
This boat is owned by Bill Sumner who was a good friend of Ronny Haylock and they worked together on classic glass restorations.

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Then classic glass division was a big contributor to the success of 2018 Gravenhurst Boat Show and the groundwork is now in place to expand this exciting new category for 2019.

I would like to thank Murray Parnell, Ron Stevenson and Mike Gridley for their passion and tireless efforts in reaching out to classic glass owners and spreading the word.

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Yours In classic glass

Scott Waites