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Wooden Boat Show

Fri, Jun 17, 2022 - Sun, Jun 19, 2022


Summer's arrival in the North deserves to be celebrated! We are hosting an in-person Wooden Boat Show and Summer Solstice Pageant June 17-19, 2022.

Rows of handmade and unique watercraft, craft demonstrations, a speaker series, family activities, an evening contra dance, the Boats-to-Tools Auction, the Solstice Pageant, a chowder feed, brats, and more! There’s a bit of everything during our Wooden Boat Show and Summer Solstice Festival. Be inspired by the stories and talents of artisans, boatbuilders, and visiting friends. Join us as we welcome the summer season in the best way possible: talking boats, celebrating community, and hanging out on the shores of Lake Superior.

This year’s Featured Presentation on Sunday, June 19 will be school founders Mark Hansen and Tom Healy, as well as founding board member Tim Cochrane sharing their stories and recounting the early days of the folk school.

Event Details

On Campus Events: June 17-19, 2022 

We plan to host these on campus events in alignment with the current recommendations of the Minnesota Department of Health. See our guidelines here.

Crafting on the Commons

Friday, June 17, Noon-5pm & Saturday, June 18, 10am-4pm

Witness skilled traditional craft artisans as they join up in community over the weekend to celebrate the process of craft.  Demonstrators will be on hand outdoors Friday-Saturday, welcoming your curiosity, questions and interest from a safe distance. 


Dick Enstad - Rope Making
Tara Austin - Rosemaling
Emily Derke - Basketry
Northwoods Fiber Guild
Mark Morgen - Boatbuilding
Laura Brown - Quilting
Nate White - Electric Lathe Bowl Turning
Candace Lacosse  - Leatherworking
Wesley Hathaway - Woodworking

Dick Enstad - Rope Making
Tara Austin - Rosemaling
Emily Derke - Basketry
Greg Johnson - Traditional Craft
Northwoods Fiber Guild
Mark Morgen - Boatbuilding
Laura Brown - Quilting
Nate White - Electric Lathe Bowl Turning
Christine Novotny - Weaving
Cody Myers - Blacksmithing
Marybeth Garmoe - Broom Making
Candace Lacosse  - Leatherworking
Wesley Hathaway - Woodworking

Additional demonstrators TBA

Wooden Boat Display

Friday, June 17; Noon-5pm; Saturday, June 18; 10am-4pm; Sunday, June 19; 10am-2pm

Wooden boat builders and enthusiasts from across the Midwest are invited to display their crafts on campus throughout the weekend. Admire the work of others, get your questions answered and perhaps feel inspired to build one of your own.

Register to display your boat here.

Speaker Series

Friday, June 17: 2pm, 3pm, and 4pm

Watch, listen, and be inspired by stories and and histories that connect craft, livelihood, and survival. 

2pm | A Resident Artisan in Scandinavia, Emily Derke
Fresh off her grand trip to Scandinavia where she worked with extraordinary craftspeople such as Steen Madsen, exploring basketry, hide tanning, rope making, and more, Emily will present a slideshow culmination of her recent educational travel experiences.

3pm | The Ropewalk Method of Cordage Production, Dick Enstad
Soak in the extraordinary ropemaking knowledge of Dick Enstad. Discover fascinating facts and stories as the history of ropemaking comes alive in this enlightening presentation. 

4pm | Commercial Fishing Q&A, Eric Brisson and Tyler Smith
If you wake up early enough and have an eye on the harbor, you'll see a boat motoring out surrounded by a cloud of seagulls. Commercial fishing has been a beloved industry of Grand Marais and Cook County for at least 150 years; Eric Brisson and Tyler Smith of North Superior Fisheries continue the tradition. Join them for an hour of question and answer about their profession on the Big Lake

Featured Presentation

Sunday, June 19: 11am

Stories from the Beginning; Celebrating 25 Years of NHFS
It’s hard to believe a quarter century has passed since the creation of North House Folk School. There are more than a few stories to share about the vision, values, volumes of work and little bit of luck that have breathed life into this place. Join school founders Mark Hansen and Tom Healy, as well as founding board member Tim Cochrane to recount the early days of the folk school. Lots of laughter & many “true as remembered” tales guaranteed.

Family Drop-In Crafts

Friday, June 17; Noon-5pm & Saturday, June 18; 10am-4pm

Bring the whole family down to the Boat Show and drop by the Family Area. We’ll have craft supplies for all ages to join in the fun as we get creative on the theme of boats, water, and fish! Perfect for imaginative folks ages 2-102. We will host a number of short drop-by activities for family small groups on campus.

Boats-to-Tools Auction

Saturday, June 18; 10am-3pm

Happening live on campus! Find boats, unique craft, tools, books, and other treasures for sale at our annual auction!

Interested in supporting North House's mission by providing a donation? Contact Libby (North House's Grants & Auctions Manager) to discuss boat donations. We'll begin accepting all other items in late May - keep an eye out for more information coming soon!

Community Gatherings

Harborside Campfire Picnic and Pie Social 

Friday, June 17; 5-7 pm  | $5 - $10 or BYO picnic

Brats anyone? Kick-off your Wooden Boat Show weekend with the taste of summer on the harbor. Brought to you by the Cook County Lions, the BBQ features traditional summer fare. We’ll have a campfire going and will be serving up pie for dessert. Pull up a seat at the picnic table for boats parading by, a sweet taste of summer and good company.


Lake Superior Chowder Experience

Saturday, June 18, 2022; Noon -1pm

$15 adults, $10 kids 12 and under                                                                                              

Get your bowl for the 22nd annual Lake Superior Chowder Experience – a festival highlight that brings chowders of North Shore restaurants for you to taste. Smoky steelhead, salsa corn, walleye and clam, and even a take on watermelon were just a few of the interpretations area restaurants took last year. Combined with freshly baked breads from North House’s wood-fired oven, this is a North Shore culinary event not to be missed.

Community Contra Dance with the Drew & Kyle Town Band 

Friday, June 17; 7-8pm (Family Dance) & 8-10pm (Community Dance) | Free

North House’s red building converts into a traditional community contra dance on Friday night, welcoming families for the first hour to learn traditional dances geared towards families with children and the next two hours all are welcome for the community dance. All are welcome - no experience necessary!

Live Music on Campus

Friday, June 17; Noon to 7pm & Saturday, June 18; 9am-3pm | Free

Keep things moving and grooving with live music on the Commons

Summer Solstice Pageant with the Good Harbor Hill Players & GAMEPALAJ

Saturday, June 18, 2022; 8pm

This beloved tradition returns to the harbor. Come welcome the Sun King back!

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteers have always been a critical and vibrant part of Wooden Boat Show, and volunteer sign up is now open! Contact Alex Blust at to get involved!