Six locally owned wooden boats won top awards at the 38th International Boat Show, held recently by the Antique and Classic Boat Society on Lake Coeur d'Alene. One of those boats was also built in Coeur d'Alene.
More than 140 wood boats from across America assembled in late September at The Coeur d'Alene Resort's floating boardwalk, to be appreciated by thousands of attendees, and judged by a panel of wood boat experts.
One of those boats now has a rare distinction - winning its category twice from the extremely detail-oriented team of judges. Jefe, owned by Donna and Jerry Gilbreath of Coeur d'Alene, won Best Late Power Contemporary, an award it also took home two years ago at the ACBS International Boat Show in Lake Geneva, Wis.
"Two awards is an unbelievable honor," Jerry Gilbreath said. "And for us, the best part of the story is that our boat was built by the wonderful craftsmen right here in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho."
The 34-foot mahogany and cedar Jefe was built in 2009 by Hagadone Marine Group's Resort Boat Shop. The boat has been featured in Robb Report, Yachts International and SportBoat, and won awards at Payette Lake, Tahoe and Lake Havasu.
Other local 2013 ACBS International Boat Show winners:
The Gilbreaths also won Best Inboard Race Boat for Shockwave, their 1961 Patterson Custom Super Stock flat-bottom, which was 1965 APBA national champion.
Ronald Voights from Post Falls won the Best Early Power Contemporary award for his 1987 Escapade 25-foot by Amsterdam Boat Works, N.Y. He built the entire interior and layout himself using cherry, alderwood and Douglas fir.
Tom and Debbie Davidson of Coeur d'Alene won the People's Choice award for Althea, their impeccably restored 1929 Chris Craft 38-foot Commuter. The boat has previously won first prize in all categories at Seattle's Lake Union Wooden Boat Festival, Best Power Boat at the Victoria Classic Boat Festival and first prize at the 17th Annual Chris-Craft Rendezvous in Port Orchard.
Steve and Linda Zwarg of Spokane won Best Preserved Antique Runabout for Killer, their 1942 Chris Craft 19-foot custom, which they've owned since 1977. Steve has done all of the work on Killer himself, except for the upholstery and gauges. Killer also won Best Preserved category in the 2008 ACBS International Boat Show held in Coeur d'Alene.
Hari and Judie Heath from Santa, Idaho, won the Best Non-Power Contemporary award for Wahnooyak, their 2011 15-foot hybrid wood canoe/kayak.
"This was a tremendous event, well-hosted by Coeur d'Alene," Gilbreath said. "After touring to other boat shows all over the country, we still like coming home the very best."