by Mark Dryfhout
On Saturday, Sept. 7, the Niagara Frontier Antique and Classic Boats Inc. is hosting its 36th annual Antique Boat Show and Raceboat Reunion at the Buffalo Launch Club at 503 E. River Road on Grand Island. The show begins at 10 a.m. and will feature antique watercraft from boat owners and enthusiasts from across the nation.
The event is non-exclusive and free of charge for those who simply want to come and watch the show.
"The best part is the fact that it's an action oriented show," says event coordinator Rich DeGlopper.
He says the problem is that "Most shows are static. You come in, look at the boats, and leave." What makes the show held by the NFACB unique is that it allows the boat owners to put their watercrafts into action and give live demonstrations in the Niagara River. DeGlopper says, "There's a lot to see and a lot to do."
Just some of the things that people can do at the show include an exhibit by the Grand Island Historical Society on historical resorts and clubs of the Island, a special seminar by Chris-Craft Commanders beginning at 12:30 p.m., an auction for rides in the boats on display, in-water raceboat fly-bys, a judged competition, the Great Dippy Race at 3 p.m., displays of boat parts, an expanded antique car show, kids camp and meals in the evening.
The classic boat show will be held from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The Buffalo Launch Club is providing a steak and corn roast at 6:30 p.m. An awards dinner will wrap up the day's activities. Reservations are required to attend the dinner.
Registration for meals and for those who wish to participate in the event with their own antique boat is required. The registration forms can be found at the address listed below.
In fact, DeGlopper is so confident in the show's entertainment that he goes so far as to say the NFACB boat show is one of the best in the country.
Participants in the NFACB boat show, according to DeGlopper, show high praise. "They feel it's one of the finest shows in the country. It has a good reputation."
Those high claims are substantiated by the increasing attendance at the show every year. According to DeGlopper, "Most shows' turnouts are declining, but ours is getting higher."
To register for some of the exclusive events at the boat show, registration and fees can be completed and paid online at www.oldboatsbuffalo.org.
Alternatively, those interested in the event who have questions or wish to register can contact DeGlopper at 716-946-7246.