Weekend Trip: Southport Wooden Boat Show

Learn about N.C. coastal life from the boat builders

Dean Dosher spent four years crafting his wooden fishing boat, the
Dean Dosher spent four years crafting his wooden fishing boat, the "Ramona." The vessel and its maker will be at the Southport Wooden Boat Show Nov. 2, where visitors can see a variety of wooden boats and learn about North Carolina's maritime history.
Dean Dosher, left, and his brother Don have been building boats since they were children, although neither has any formal training.
Dean Dosher, left, and his brother Don have been building boats since they were children, although neither has any formal training.
Dean Dosher named his boat after his wife, giving the craft her middle name,
Dean Dosher named his boat after his wife, giving the craft her middle name, "Ramona."
On an excursion on the Lockwood Folly River in Brunswick County, Dean Dosher talks about the history of the area and growing up on the water.
On an excursion on the Lockwood Folly River in Brunswick County, Dean Dosher talks about the history of the area and growing up on the water.
Before setting out on a short trip up the Lockwood Folly River, Dean Dosher tells passengers what they can expect to see.
Before setting out on a short trip up the Lockwood Folly River, Dean Dosher tells passengers what they can expect to see.
Working boats are docked in Varnamtown, N.C.
Working boats are docked in Varnamtown, N.C.

Learn about life on the North Carolina coast — past and present — at the 10th Annual Southport Wooden Boat Show. Wooden boats of various shapes and sizes will be on display on land and in the water at the Old Yacht Basin in Southport, N.C., on Saturday, Nov. 2.

Visitors will be able to talk with wooden boat makers like Dean Dosher, who built the craft featured on the 2019 event poster and T-shirt. The “Ramona” is a 36-foot-long fishing boat named for Dosher’s wife of 52 years. He spent four years building the boat, which was finished in summer 2018.

Similar to working boats of the 1920s to ‘50s, the “Ramona” is “a little more fancy,” Dosher says. A big difference is the hand-crafted cypress and mahogany interior.

The 70-year-old Dosher has been building boats with his brother, Don, since they were children. For one of their first boats, Dosher recalls, the brothers stole nails from a neighbor’s fence and plugged holes in the skiff with fabric scraps filched from their mother’s sewing basket. While they have built more than a hundred boats since then, the Doshers never received any formal training. Everything they know about boats came from growing up on the coast and on the Lockwood Folly River.

After displaying the Ramona at the Southport Boat Show, Dean Dosher plans to take visitors on excursions on the river, so future generations will learn to love the Lockwood Folly as much as he does.

For more information about the Southport Wooden Boat Show, visit southportwoodenboatshow.com.

 

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