The Online Magazine For Amateur Boat Builders














C A L E N D A R    F A Q

Q: What is a "Messabout" anyway?

A: Well, a bunch of people who have built their own boats or want to build their own boats get together, talk about boats an go boating. They are of special value to anyone who is trying to decide on a design to build. All boat-folks will be happy to fill your head with our dubious opinions, but the real value is that you will certainly be offered rides. Maybe even the helm if you’re lucky. Being in a design for even 5 minutes tells you much more than blueprints can. This is also a good time for maiden voyages and test-runs. A small gang of boat-types can bring to bear a whole lot of collected experience in problem-solving.

In fact, it needn’t even be a home-built boat. Most messabouters don’t mind having a few production boats around, and often welcome interesting ones. Shoal draft designs leap to mine, such as the Dovekie, Shearwater and “hen” series (E.g. “marsh hen”). Indeed, Cedar Key is one of the oldest messabouts, and was organized mostly for Sea-Pearls – a production boat.

If nothing else, you have an excuse to get away from it all for a weekend. Messabouts are nearly always held in conjunction with camping. Bring your tent and pack light.

Q: What if I know of an event not shown?

A: If you know of an event that is not listed here, or can fill in missing information, please email me at robrohdeszudy at netzero dot net with at least the email address of the organizer. Of course, I'd love it if you can fill in other information as well, such as:

Messabout Name, if applicable
Dates to be held
Park Name
Body of water
Nearest City, State
Host Name
Host Email
Camping fees
Camping reservations link
Park features
Permits required & associated fees, e.g. launch ramp, parks, etc.
Events planned during messabout
Website devoted to messabout, if applicable
Photos from previous years, if available
Guests from previous years, if recorded, and boats they brought
Further descriptive notes

Q: What if I'm planning an event?

A: If you're planning a messabout, read this article from the master himself, Jim Michalak:

In case you don't read it, let me urge you to set your dates early and choose a body of water that allows camping.