2023 Exhibit Winners


1st Place to #3
Nolan Sires, Charleston, SC 

Owner’s first boat build project.  Designed to mimic an 18th century boat.  The boat is hand rivetted without glue.



1st Place to #101
Carley, Abner, Clarksville, GA

Designed and built by the owner.  He used western red cedar.  It has a laser engraved mountain scape on the hull.



1st Place #209
Russell Stewart, Pawleys Island, SC

Built as a true “sea kayak” for use in the ocean. Constructed from a variety of different species of wood including Alaskan White Cedar, Western Red Cedar, Mahogany, and Cherry.


Judges Award #206
Barbara Singer, Galivants Ferry, SC

Built in 2023 after husband built a kayak in 2022.  The boat lives in Galivant’s Ferry, SC and is used in the Pee Dee watershed that feeds into Georgetown. 



1st Place #304
Robert McNabb, Check, VA

The Paddle Barge.  Owner cut all of the wood from live trees he hand selected.  Uses the board frequently to go fishing with his dog.



1st Place #411
George Scarborough, Charleston, SC

Owner is a master carpenter who used his skills to restore the boat.  The boat was once owned and sailed by George Scarborough.  It was built in 1972 and restored in the last year.


Judges Award #401
Walter Atkins, Wilmington, NC

Built by students at Cape Fear Community College.  The attention to detail is incredible.  It is clear that the instructor (Walter Atkins) and the students were passionate about the build.



1st Place #452
Randall Swan, Mount Pleasant, SC

Owner has had the boat for more than 50 years.  It is beautifully designed with juniper and mahogany and other high quality building materials.



1st Place #503
Jeff Efird, Mount Pleasant, SC

Owner’s first boat build.  Went to a week of boat building school in Maine.  Worked on the boat for over 20 years.  He decided that after 20 plus years of working on it, he would enter it into the Gtown Wooden Boat Show and commit to finishing it prior.


Judges Award #502
Paul Diephaus, Johns Island, SC

Based on a design from Indian guides.  Designed to take multiple hunters on long trips and can hold over 2,000 lbs. so big game kills can be transported.  Owner uses the boat frequently for fishing and shrimping with his kids.



1st Place #551
Bob Dunphy, Cape Coral, FL

Originally made by Dunphy Boatworks which was acquired by Chris Craft.  Boat has been passed down in the family for generations.  Owner uses the boat frequently.


Judges Award #552
Walter Hardin, Rock Hill, SC

This boat was in BAD shape when the owner purchased it.  He had to rebuild most of the wood structure including the hull.  It is completely restored to it original condition or better.



1st Place #604
Gregory Moore, Murphy, NC

Built in 1946 by AJ Higgins, designer and manufacturer of the famous WWII Higgins Boat.  Owner purchased the boat because of its historical significance and crafted the restoration to honor the Higgins name.



1st Place #667
Wayne Watson, Anderson, SC

Owner found the boat in a house he purchased on a lake.  The house had a canal that allowed boats to be parked off the lake under the house.  He had never restored a boat before and spent the next several years learning and figuring it out. 



1st Place #706
Dr. Frank Russell M.D., Pittsboro, NC

Designed from scratch in 1999.  Built to resemble a Chris Craft but improve upon the design.  Owner uses the boat frequently and claims that it is very fast.


Judges Award #708
Tommy Graham, McClellanville, SC

McClellanville, SC owner.  Uses the boat frequently.  Made of untraditional pine and cypress and constructed meticulously.  Owner has been a long time exhibitor at the Wooden Boat Show



1st Place #751
Carson Benton, Myrtle Beach, SC

Owner has two boats in the show.  This sail boat was almost a complete reconstruction project with little that could be salvaged.  The owner hopes to donate the boat someday to a nonprofit that will maintain it and use it to teach children to sail.



1st Place #803
Julie Bolt, Charlotte, NC

Designed after classic whaling boats.  Attention to detail is incredible.  He has the entire crew, nets, and other detailed extras on the boat.



1st Place #854
John Martin, Cottageville, SC

Owner built it for his son when he was 2yrs old.  Although it is small, his son has used it extensively.  This boat will be handed down in the family for many generations to come.


#803 Model Boat
Julie Bolt, Charlotte, NC

2022 Exhibit Award Winners

Winner - Michael Flynn, Charleston, SC Owner Designed and Built #701 FLY BOYS, Mahogany Runabout

Winner - John Martin, Cottageville, SC Exhibit #5 named Penelope. The owner is a longtime supporter of the boat show. The boat is impeccably detailed in every way.

Winner -Anneley Thorstad, Georgetown, SC Exhibit #101 named Bizaan.
Boat was restored using factory spare parts that it came with when originally delivered in 1941. All other replaced parts match the originals.

Judges Award – Gregory Moore, Murphy ,NC Exhibit #108 named Rushton Princess.
Complete and thorough restoration. The owner has paid close attention to detail, especially with the boat’s hardware.

Judges Award - John Warren, Mt. Pleasant, SC Exhibit #110 named Annie Jane.
The boat was built during the COVID pandemic. It was made in part from rare and beautiful Tiger Maple.

Winner - Matthew Gunning, Summerville, SC #204 Stand Up Fishing Kayak named Spartina.
Fish silhouette inlay in the boat. Graphite bottom from paddle board design for stability when poling.

Winner - Scott Visbaras, Georgetown, SC #305 named Alaia surfboard.
Old school surfboard with no fins. Made from recycled mahogany salvaged from the Sampit River in downtown Georgetown.

Winner - Chris Elliott, Edenton, NC #408 named Legacy. Designed and built by a father and son. The boat is still sailed weekly. When the owner wants to feel closest to his deceased father, he raises the sails.

Judges Award - Ken Ford, St. Augustine, FL #402 named Roxanne. The owner designed and patented the “birdwind” mast design and built the boat.

Judges Award - Robert Ortega, Wilmington, NC #406 named In Theory. Just finished this year. Constructed from Sapele, Cypress, Douglas Fir, and Meranti plywood. Beautiful and a rare blend of woods.

Winner - Marcy Jean Brenner, Charleston, SC #453 named Trade Wind. The owner lives on and off the boat in Charleston. The boat travels extensively and is a true labor of love for its owner.

Judges Award - Carson Benton, Myrtle Beach, SC #452
Designed from pre-1900 plans. The current owner has had it for more than 50 years. It has been exhibited in many wooden and sailboat shows over the years and won numerous awards.

Winner - Robert Fields, Johns Island, SC SC #513 named Marshhen. The owner uses the boat often. It was built during the COVID pandemic as a Chesapeake peeler skiff.

Judges Award - Stephen Truluck, Georgetown, SC #508 named Potluck. The boat’s bottom is canvas cloth. Its interior wooden stringers are exposed giving it a classic look. Old outboard motor still runs.

Winner - Robert Cristina, Little River, SC #552 Boat has all original upholstery, curtains, etc. that are more than 60 years old and in incredible condition.

Judges Award - Bryan Hornsby, Lugoff, SC #557 named Woodpecker. The boat sat from 1957-2014. The current owner stripped all of the fiberglass off of the boat to make it a true wooden boat prior to restoration.

Winner - John Worcester, Beaufort, NC #605 named Scorpio. During the COVID pandemic the owner called the NC Watercraft Center and inquired about building a boat. He bought the design from New Zealand and lead a class of students during the build.

Judges Award - Ken Hewett, Supply, NC #604 named Folly Girl. This boat was incredibly built from scratch without any plans. The owner made it up during the build and did a great job.

Winner - Spencer Hurteau, Charleston, SC #659 named Old Poot. Owner’s grandfather bought the boat more than 60 years ago. It has been restored twice. It was most recently restored when the owner told his grandfather that he was engaged, and his grandfather told him the boat needed to be restored so they could leave the wedding in the boat. The grandfather died during the restoration. The owner and his wife left their wedding reception in the boat.

Judges Award - Bob Graham, Summerville, SC #651 named Sylvia II. Built in 1933. Its history includes commercial fishing, Navy supply, sunk once, and used as a teaching vessel. Documented as the oldest surviving wooden fishing boat in North Carolina

Judges Award - Harry Tiller, Georgetown, SC #661 named Cost +. Boat has been a labor of love for its owner for many years. It has exhibited in the Boat Show numerous times. The boat has many stories to tell.

Winner - John Martin, Cottageville, SC #708 Flats Skiff named Paramour. Very detailed design prior to construction. The boat is made to fish.

Judges Award - Tommy Graham, McClellanville, SC #705 Houseboat named Alert The boat is a tribute to its owner’s father. It is named after the owner’s father’s freight boat from McClellanville.

Judges Award - Henry Culberson, Pawleys Island, SC #706 row and solar powered boat named Greta T. Designed and built by a local boater. The attention to detail and design is remarkable.

Winner - Captain Robert Cobb, McClellanville, SC #751 named Miss Ivy. This is a rare >100yr old boat. It was built in 1917 by Old Town canoes.

Winner - Margaret Grant, Rock Hill, SC #803 named Conrack. Carolina oyster pole skiff. Named after the movie based on the Pat Conroy book “The Water is Wide”.

Winner - Chris Elliott, Edenton, NC #851 Rocking Boat named Annie B.
Boat was made for the owner’s young granddaughter. It features a rope “sippy” cup holder and special “cubby” for stuffed animals and toys.

2018 Award Winners


Just 19 days until the 29th Annual GWBS!

Georgetown was very lucky to have been spared from Hurricane Florence and the subsequent flooding that our neighbors and friends experienced north of us.  Now that the threat of significant flooding is over, Front Street shops and restaurants are reopening and the Wooden Boat Show crew is moving full steam ahead with preparations for this year's show. Look for our sponsor board to go up this week. 

We have been updating the Wooden Boat Show Facebook page daily, so be sure to check out all the news at facebook.com/GeorgetownWoodenBoatShow/




29th Annual Wooden Boat Show Featured Artist: Cathy Lumpkin

Cathy Lumpkin has advice to give about painting: It’s never too late to start.

They’re sage words from a woman who began to paint her oil-on-canvas pieces at age 50, and whose art is now featured on the 2018 Georgetown Wooden Boat Show poster. Her painting depicts a colorful and impressionistic recreation of a photo taken during the show’s popular (and often hilarious) boat race, when teams of two each receive identical materials and time spans to build wooden water crafts, and then race them on the Sampit River.

While at work for her job with Coastal Eye Group as an ophthalmologic nurse, Cathy heard her coworkers talking about the boat races. She had just learned she was receiving the honor of being a boat show poster artist, and was pondering what to paint.

“Looking back at the art [from previous years’ posters], there were a lot of the older boats. But everybody, whether they were interested in old boats or not, or even interested in the Wooden Boat Show, loved the boat races, because they are fun and people are screaming and children are screaming and people are falling in the water. It was just this great American fun pastime – all these people were together doing something fun and silly. It is such a part of Americana, with the flags flying and so much color and movement.”

Her attraction to such an event is inevitable, since a Lowcountry perspective on Americana is where Cathy’s artistic efforts have focused these past 12 years since she started painting. The granddaughter of an architect and daughter of a college art major, the Darlington native always wanted to paint.

“When I turned 50 I decided it was now or never,” she said on a late spring afternoon in a quiet corner of the South Carolina Maritime Museum on Front Street in Georgetown.

Cathy majored in nursing at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, then went on to anesthesia school at Richland Memorial Hospital. She met an attorney from Georgetown named Bob Lumpkin, whom she married. The couple settled into Estherville Plantation, an 18th-century rice plantation on the banks of the Sampit River.

Cathy’s good friend, Angela Tiller, is a previous boat show poster artist, and she encouraged Cathy to take art lessons. It was frustrating at first.

She took lessons from Jef Sturm, another previous boat show artist, who requires his new students to paint eggs, “to get your values right.” Cathy worked during the day, took lessons at night and for the first three months went home discouraged about her eggs.

But she did not give up, and she discovered that, “If you practice enough, take enough lessons, just really pursue it, I think art is something anybody can do.” Even now, with her artwork fetching sales, Cathy continues taking lessons with Elizabeth Bronson in McClellanville, saying she still has much to learn.

From early on, her art was “all about Lowcountry.” She enjoys painting oysters and fishermen and sweetgrass basket weavers and shrimp pickers.

“I’m just drawn to oystermen,” she says. “I’m drawn to the beauty and the simple things of the Lowcountry and the history of it, and the beach. But for some reason oysters seem to be my focus. The older people of this area, the crabbers and the fishermen, are mostly what I’ve painted lately.”

A few of her works are at Rice Birds gift shop, and sometimes she puts pieces at Black Mingo. Most of her art is sold during the annual Prince George Winyah Episcopal Church plantation tours, when proceeds are donated to local charities.

Cathy isn’t retired – she still works at Coastal Eye Group – and at home her studio is in a former butler’s room at the old plantation house. One day she might paint a slave descendant from South Island, and another day she could be inspired to paint old rice trunks, cast nets, a spottail that her husband caught or a big bowl of freshly caught crabs.

“Art teaches you to see the beauty in the simple things,” she says. “I encourage everybody to try or get involved in anything they want to do in their 50s, 60s or whenever. It’s not too late, and it opens such a different world to yourself, with a different group of friends and a different passion.”

Cathy Lumpkin’s original art will be auctioned at this year’s GOAT ISLAND REGATTA, held on Friday night before the Boat Show.

Posters featuring the piece will be available for sale for $20 at the museum starting on August 24, 2018.


Southeast Tourism Society Selects Georgetown Wooden Boat Show as an ‘STS Top 20 Event’

Travel industry organization has saluted region’s best events since 1985

ATLANTA, Ga. – Southeast Tourism Society has named the 29th Annual Georgetown Wooden Boat Show as one of the STS Top 20 Events in the Southeast for October 2018.

This year’s Wooden Boat Show will be held on October 20 and 21, 2018 in historic Georgetown, SC. The STS Top 20 Festival and Event Awards have highlighted programs around the Southeast since 1985. Travel industry experts select 20 events per month, and STS publicizes them throughout the United States. The complete list is published on two websites: Southeast Tourism Society and Travel Media Press Room.

The Georgetown Wooden Boat Show – always held on the third weekend in October – features one of the Southeast’s best wooden boat exhibits with more than 140 classic wooden boats displayed on land and water, children’s model boat building, knot tying, maritime art and crafts, food and music. A special attraction is the Wooden Boat Challenge when teams of two race to build a rowing skiff within a 4-hour time limit and then test their boats for seaworthiness. All events take place on the waterfront and along Front Street in Historic Downtown Georgetown. The Show is produced by the Harbor Historical Association, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, with proceeds benefiting the South Carolina Maritime Museum.

“The Southeast is home to unique and memorable events throughout the year. In spotlighting the Top 20 festivals and events each month, STS is not only giving these events the recognition they deserve but we’re also creating a quick reference guide to some of the best festivals in the Southeast,” said Bill Har              dman, president and CEO of the Southeast Tourism Society. “These events are important to the economic vitality of our communities and this is a way for us to acknowledge the time and resources organizers have tirelessly spent to create memories for their attendees.”

Events considered for the STS Top 20 recognition must be at least three years old and have attendance of at least 1,000.  The online nomination link and submission deadlines are available at SoutheastTourism.org or by calling 770-542-1523.

STS, founded in 1983 and headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting tourism to and within 12 states – Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.

Name: Sally Swineford
Email:  boats@woodenboatshow.com
Phone:  843-340-3879

Featured Artist for 2017 is Jef Sturm

A love for and mastery of landscapes and light shine through in the 2017 Georgetown Wooden Boat Show painting by this year’s artist, Jef Sturm.

Anyone who has seen the shrimp boats in the Tom Hanks movie “Forrest Gump” will recognize the historic era from which this year’s featured boat was launched. The Prodigal Son, a familiar sight in Georgetown Harbor and Winyah Bay with Captain Ronnie Campbell at the helm, is typical of wooden shrimp boats from about 50 years ago except for one major deviation: Its rigging was removed.

“The Prodigal Son was built in ’48, and it was a small shrimper,” Sturm said. “It did what it did. Ronnie’s gotten ahold of it and he’s taken all the rigging and stuff off of it, and he’s more or less refurbished it. It’s a beautiful boat.”

Sturm depicted the white wooden boat on a sunny and placid part of Winyah Bay where dashes of color in the paint and wood are reflected from a fair weather sky. The artist used setting and light to evoke a sensible and humbly elegant personality for the vessel.


Read more

2016 Winners

You can view our 2016 award winners here as we enter them into Google docs. We will be updating this document throughout the day.

2016 Award Winners

The Show will go on!

Electricity, internet, phone service, and cable TV have been restored to us in downtown Georgetown.

This boat show is happening! Please go to our facebook page for photos and updates:


Exhibitors go here for set-up instructions:

See you on Front Street this weekend!


Wooden Boat Show to host Cardboard Boat Regatta

It may be the Wooden Boat Show, but, as the old saying goes, “whatever floats your boat.”

For the 26th annual show, set for Oct. 15 and 16, a new signature event will be the Cardboard Boat Regatta. It will be part of the “Sunday At The Show” event on Oct. 16.

Families, businesses, schools, youth groups, friends, and nonprofits are invited to design and build a boat made entirely of corrugated box material. The sky’s the limit. Use your imagination (or the Internet) to create a vessel that can range from a simple sailing craft to a stunning ship or a rubber ducky.

The Pride of the Fleet will be awarded to the vessel with the most innovative engineering and artistic design; Team Spirit to the group with the most out- standing theme, team participation and crowd support; and the Titanic ribbon to the vessel and team with the most dramatic sinking.

Don’t miss this opportunity to challenge your friends and coworkers.

The boats need to be at the show by Sunday morning (Oct. 16) at 10 a.m. for display in the challenge tent.

After this preview by the public, the boats will be launched into the Sampit River at 1:30 p.m. One to two sailors will navigate by paddling the vessel to a designated buoy and back to qualify for the awards.

For more information or to register, go https://woodenboatshow.com/cardboard-boat-regatta/ or contact Susan Davis at 843-325-1800 or sndavis05@gmail.com.

Corrugated box material will also be available by donation from International Paper. If you are interested in using this material, contact Davis to arrange a pick-up time.