Big Birthday Cake For 100 Yr Old Yacht At Classic & Wooden Boat Fes

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15th October 2010, 07:17pm - Views: 1569





Misc Miscellaneous Australian National Maritime Museum 1 image







Media invitation


Big birthday cake for 100-y-o yacht

at Classic & Wooden Boat Festival 

Sunday, 17 October at 10.30 am

Australian National Maritime Museum

A special historic yacht will celebrate its 100th Birthday at the Classic & Wooden Boat Festival in Sydney this

weekend (16/17 Oct). 

Graceful Weenè, the first ‘One-Design’ fixed keel yacht built in Australia, was launched in Hobart one

century earlier to the day… on 17 October 1910. 

A ‘one designer’ is one of a number of yachts built from the same set of plans…  all the same in size, shape

and design. In a race the yachts start equal and first across the line wins. 

Before ‘one designers’, all fixed keel sailing races were contested by yachts of different sizes and shapes,

and they all had to be handicapped for a fair result.

In Hobart Weenè (10m long) was quickly joined by six ‘sister’ yachts, all built in Tasmania around 1910-11,

and this historic little fleet was the first to contest ‘one design’ races in Australia.   

There are now vast numbers of ‘one design’ classes contested locally, nationally and internationally,

including many at the Olympics.  

Surprisingly perhaps, all seven of the original Tasmania One Design fleet still exist, spread out around the

Australian coast in ports from Perth to Brisbane.  One of Weenè’s six ‘sisters’, Gannet (launched Nov 1911),

will be with her at this weekend’s Classic & Wooden Boat Festival at the Australian National Maritime

Museum, Darling Harbour. 

To celebrate Weenè’s 100th the museum will cut a special Birthday Cake on the pontoon beside the yacht at

10.30 am on Sunday morning.  Present will be the owner, Ben Stoner, and past owners Kenn Batt (whose

family owned Weenè 1911-1963), Paul Conde (1979-1985) and Jeff Gordon (1985-1993). 

Weenè and Gannet will be among 120 notable privately-owned boats on display at the two-day (Saturday

and Sunday) Classic & Wooden Boat Festival.  The others include everything from graceful old pleasure

cruisers to classic wooden speedboats, workboats and tugs. 

Other features of the festival will include


Four tall ships: the HM Bark Endeavour replica, James Craig, Soren Larsen and Southern Swan


A Tall Ships Forum (Sunday afternoon)  – where you can meet the masters of the four tall ships and

hear what it’s like to sail on them


Children’s arts and crafts themed around Sindbad the Sailor


Traditional maritime tool display and expert demonstrations of blacksmithing, ropework, caulking

and sail making 


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The exciting Quick and Dirty Boat Building Competition


Heritage talks and presentations 


The famous, hotly contested Deckhand Line-throwing Contest


Heritage vessel rides on Cockle Bay


Giant model boat and marine artists displays


Festive marketplace for all things nautical plus food stalls and live music

Tickets are $18 per adult, $9 per child or $40 for a family. The festival will be open both days 9.30 am to 5



15 October 2010                                     Media information, Bill Richards 0418 403 472 
















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