Finger Lakes Boating Museum to display vintage boats at Watkins Glen Vintage Car weekend

Staff Reports
The Finger Lakes Boating Museum's rare Penn Yan Imperial inboard runabout was built in 1931 and is thought to have been the prototype for the succession of inboard motor boats Penn Yan subsequently offered throughout the wooden era.

Vintage wooden boats from the Finger Lakes Boating Museum will be on display along with vintage race cars at Watkins Glen International Sept. 7-9.

For the first time, the Boating Museum is participating in the Glenora Wine Cellars U.S. Vintage Grand Prix Presented by Welliver. The Glenora event at the race track is held in conjunction with the weekend Grand Prix Festival in the Village of Watkins Glen.

Since 1993 the Grand Prix Festival of Watkins Glen has celebrated the village's history of motor racing.

Mike Eckert, Manager of Partnership Sales at Watkins Glen International, explained that this year the Glenora event was expanded to include vintage boats and planes as well as the cars. The race track is working on a plane display with the Glenn Curtiss Museum in Hammondsport.

The Boating Museum will display the following boats at the race track:

INBOARDS - 1931 Penn Yan Imperial; 1950 Penn Yan Clipper; 1952 Morehouse Utility;

CANOE - Penn Yan Guide

ROWBOATS - 1905 Sutherland double ender fishing boat; 1930s Mitchel trout boat.

"Motor racing and boating are both very significant in the heritage of the Finger Lakes and we are pleased to take part in the Watkins Glen celebration by showing boats from our collection," said Vince Scalise, Boating Museum president.

The Grand Prix Festival in the village includes the Walk of Fame Award Ceremony, a historical lecture and a judged auto show. The highlight is a tribute to the original Grand Prix course that wound through village streets. This tribute is open to selected cars participating in the Glenora Vintage Grand Prix taking place at the nearby Watkins Glen International race course. Different classes of cars race all weekend at the track.

More information on the vintage weekend events and tickets is available on the Watkins Glen web site at www.theglen.com.

The Boating Museum reached agreement with the City of Geneva in the fall of 2009 to establish a permanent home on the Geneva waterfront in association with a Visitor Center. The building, which will be located on the current Geneva Chamber of Commerce site, is being enabled by a $2-million grant provided to the city by state Sen. Michael Nozzolio and a $450,000 grant to the city through the Regional Economic Development Council initiative. Construction is scheduled to begin this September.

The Boating Museum has assembled a collection of more than 100 wooden boats built in the Finger Lakes over the past 100 years, as well as numerous related artifacts and extensive reference material. Portions of the collection will be displayed on a rotating basis within the new facility, but President Vince Scalise emphasized that there will be a lot more to the museum than viewing boats because education, restoration and preservation are the key elements of the museum's mission.

Also featured will be boat rides on Seneca Lake, active on-water programs including sailing and small boat handling, interactive workshops and displays to engage visitors in the design and construction of boats and boating history materials and programs.

The boating museum is a 501c3 not-for-profit corporation and was chartered by the New York State Department of Education in 1997 to "research, document, preserve and share the boating history of the Finger Lakes region."

For more information, check the Boating Museum's website at www.flbm.org