Madisonville Wooden Boat Festival
Expect to see vintage wooden boats dating back decades: cruisers, luggers, sailboats, skiffs and trawlers with names like Mama Doll, Miss Ashley, Never Done and Reaux Boat and the Madisonville Wooden Boat Festival.
There’s no denying that a staple of the Louisiana Northshore is the picturesque Tchefuncte River. On Oct. 12-13, celebrate 30 years of Madisonville’s Wooden Boat Festival right on the river. You’ll have tons of fun while supporting a good cause, as the festival is presented by the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum to benefit its educational programs and the Madisonville lighthouse restoration.
This premier two-day family event attracts about 30,000 visitors and hundreds of boats each year – from vintage cruisers to sailboats – with quirky names like “Mama Doll” and “Reaux Boat.” The festival offers endless fun for all ages with classic cars, a beer garden and carnival rides. Bring the kids to the Children’s Village for arts, crafts, music, games, science experiments and an obstacle course. In the mood for a little shopping? Local artisans sell jewelry, driftwood sculptures, seagrass hats, paintings and more. Hungry? You know it’s not a Louisiana festival without a line of vendors selling Louisiana specialties. Do it all while listening to the sweet sounds of local entertainment, like Sugar Bomb and the Boogie Falaya Band.
Perhaps the highlight of the festival is the Quick 'n Dirty Boat Building Contest, in which participants pick a theme and have 14 hours to build a boat from the materials provided. The boats then must complete a 100-yard course to prove their seaworthiness. Laughs and cheers can be heard from miles away as onlookers watch which boats succeed and which boats fail to stay afloat.
A visit to Madisonville Wooden Boat Festival is the perfect way to enjoy the charming Louisiana Northshore. For more information and to buy tickets, visit the event website. Remember to snap, tag and share with #OnlyLouisiana.