A lot of people travel to Maine this time of year, for the lobster, or the beautiful rocky coast and it's vibrant maritime history. Just about everywhere you see working boats and lighthouses, lobster shacks, tidal flats, pine trees and rocks. But mixed in with - and perhaps inspired by - the rich history here, is a vibrant wooden surfboard building culture.
This summer, the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath, thanks to boatshop director Kurt Spiridakis, has put together a sweet little board building exhibit showcasing some of the fine craftspeople scattered about the coast. Aptly tied in with a larger exhibit entitled "Eye Sweet and Fair- Naval Architecture, Lofting and Modeling", the wooden surfboard show is up all summer and highlights some of the varied methods that exist for building true hollow wooden surfboards. You'll see longboards and shortboards, local woods and exotic species. The one thing you won't see is foam. Why? Because a hollow board is built as a boat is: "lofted" (in a sense) from a series of cross-sections into a fluid, "fair" shape designed to work with the water.
The museum is just a couple miles off the rhumb line (by car or boat) for anyone heading downeast this summer, so be sure to stop in and check it out. And tell Kurt we say hi.