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Wooden Boat Show is a cruise through Coast history

The Mystic will be one of the boats featured at the Billy Creel Memorial Gulf Coast Wooden & Classic Boat Show, set for Saturday and Sunday.
The Mystic will be one of the boats featured at the Billy Creel Memorial Gulf Coast Wooden & Classic Boat Show, set for Saturday and Sunday. Maritime & Seafood Industry Museum

About 50 boats will be on display Saturday and Sunday at the Billy Creel Memorial Gulf Coast Wooden & Classic Boat Show at the Biloxi Schooner Pier Complex.

The annual show is presented by the Maritime & Seafood Industry Museum.

True to the museum’s focus, the show celebrates the seafood industry with demonstrations and exhibits.

Castnet contests

On Saturday, an adult castnet contest is planned at 1 p.m., followed by a children’s castnet contest at 2 p.m.

There also will be oyster-shell painting for children.

Guests can get a taste of the local seafood with fried shrimp and fish plates and shrimp jambalaya available from vendors.

Music Saturday

There will be music by longtime Coast performer Hank Berumen.

Guests can sail aboard the 68-foot Biloxi Schooners, at the top of every hour from 11 a.m. both days; the final sail will be at 4 p.m. The cost is $15 per person and are free to children 4 and younger.

Floating works of art

The array of wooden vessels includes some true classics, with the oldest dating to 1928 – a 42-foot Elco flattop named the “Bon Conge.”

There also is a 1939 yacht, a 1954 Covacevich-built lugger, a 1930s Skate and a 1936 Wheeler yacht.

Tours will be offered of a 65-foot 1937 Biloxi Lugger/excursion boat.

Among the more-recent vessels are five restored Stauter-built skiffs from the 1960s to 1980s.

There also will be a restored 1964 Century and an original 1961 Thompson Brothers.

Robin Krohn David, executive director of the Maritime & Seafood Industry Museum, said the care put into restoring and preserving these boats make them objects of beauty.

“These vessels are works of art, true demonstrations of unbelievable wooden craftsmanship,” she said. “The time, energy and money it takes to keep the vessels in pristine condition is unbelievable. The owners truly love their boats.”

Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday.

The Schooner Pier Complex is at 367 Beach Blvd.

Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for students (13-18) and free for 12 and younger.

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