A friend at my dad’s work told him about a festival in Madisonville, LA. All the boats that are allowed to participate must be made of wood. It is a very popular boat show and there are all sorts of things to do, if you don’t want to just look at the numerous wooden boats.

There is a woodworking association that help kids make wooden boats every year.
First, comes the “hard” choice of deciding what type of boat you want to build…

From October 2011


Then you get matched up with a woodworker who helps make your boat. Sam’s guy quickly figured out that Sam knew nothing about boats and so he just kind of designed one for him.

From October 2011


From October 2011


Getting instructions on where to take his boat next…

From October 2011


The wives of some of the woodworkers help the kids pick out their sails and put the sails on the masts.

From October 2011


From October 2011


From October 2011


Then a man puts an American flag on each boat. He said “every good American boat needs a good American flag.”

From October 2011


Then, the best part occurred, Sam got to name his boat. This might seem trivial to some kids but it was a big deal for Sam. He had to pick a good STRONG name for his boat. The lady asked him what he wanted to name it and Sam immediately spouted out “Gopher Wood!” The lady had no idea what he said (and neither did I the first time) and so she asked again. That time, I understood him and told her what he said. She looked quizzically at both of us and said, “How do you spell that?” and so I spelled gopher for her and she figured out the wood part. Sam kept telling her “Gopher Wood, like in the Bible… Noah’s boat Gopher Wood”. It was too cute! Sam has a book that says that Noah’s boat was made of gopher wood and that has stuck out to Sam.
SS Gopher Wood with Capt. Sam…

From October 2011


After the boat is named, you can test its “seaworthiness”…

From October 2011


It floats!

From October 2011

Then we went towards the Children’s Village part of the boat show. On the way there, we passed several teams making boats for a boat race that occurs on the Sunday of the festival…

From October 2011


From October 2011


They had those gerbil ball things that kids can play in on the water. I think they would be VERY hot inside…

From October 2011


Sam got to decorate a lighthouse sheet at a church’s booth…

From October 2011


Then he QUICKLY spotted the inflatables…

From October 2011


From October 2011


A guy that I met while a student at NOBTS, Joe McKeever, is a cartoonist and draws people. He was there and so we all got “sketched”. I think Sam was either trying to figure out what Joe was doing or was trying to figure out how to get that corn dog…

From October 2011


From October 2011


From October 2011


My dad got sketched too but he was the one with my camera so I don’t have a picture of him. I was too busy keeping up with Sam who, at this point, had already worked his way over to a pumpkin decorating booth.

From October 2011


HEY!

From October 2011


Next, we walked over to the Maritime Museum.
Sam enjoyed playing in an old submarine…

From October 2011


From October 2011


From October 2011


“Hello? You got the wrong number”

From October 2011


I made a video of Sam playing with the phones. At the beginning, he was telling me that he was talking to his Aunt Jacky about her garage doors that go up and down.

Now for some boats… (remember these are all made of wood)

From October 2011


From October 2011


The green boat is actually from NC! There is also a lady in the background getting worked on by EMTs.

From October 2011


A brief history interruption…

From October 2011


The boat on the left is what the EMTs rode in on- it was the “rescue” boat.

From October 2011


The owner of this boat runs one of my dad’s favorite “nice” restaurants in Slidell.

From October 2011


From October 2011


Sheriff’s Office boat (probably not wooden) šŸ™‚

From October 2011


There was a man demonstrating how canoes can be made from cypress logs.

From October 2011


By this time, we all were ready to hike back to the van and grab some lunch. It was SOOOOOOO hot! This was such a fun festival and I hope we can go again- and bring Travis with us!!

šŸ™‚
Steph

Advertisements