Boat lovers wooden miss this festival

Mackenzie Archer

AFTER a four-year hiatus the much-loved Australian Wooden Boat Festival (AWBF) will return to Hobart in February, with 450 vessels from across the country expected to arrive for the largest iteration of the festival yet.

The four-day festival will take over the Hobart waterfront from February 10-13, showcasing Tasmania’s rich maritime history and continued links to the water through tourism, seafood, trade and leisure.

With a key focus on legendary Australian boat builders and designers, the 2023 festival will include ten hulking ships from Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania and the renowned ‘Duyfken’ vessel from the Australian National Maritime Museum.

“We are inviting craftsmen and women down to run workshops at the Blundstone Noisy Boatyard where festival goers will have the opportunity to meet contemporary wooden boat builders and designers from across the country,” AWBF general manager Paul Stephanus said.

“We have often featured other nations at the AWBF, but with so many great things happening across the country, we are excited to showcase what Australia has to offer.

“Every state will have a boat builder represented who will be showcasing their new projects.”

Festival patrons can also expect a massive entertainment program, with the Hobart waterfront set to showcase music, theatre, on-water activities, presentations, live cooking displays and much more.

Destination Southern Tasmania CEO Alex Heroys said it is great to have the full festival back after the impacts of the COVID, with organisers expecting the event to attract about 12,000 visitors to the state.

“The Australian Wooden Boat Festival is really one of the jewels in our crown of summer events here in Tasmania,” he said.

“There will be tens of thousands of people coming for this festival and they will be spreading their economic benefit not just in Hobart but all across the state.

“Wooden boat building is it is a part of Tasmania’s DNA, with a number of regional areas leaders in the industry.

“This will take festival goers out of the city and into these regional areas which in turn will have flow on benefits for local communities.”

To find out more about the 2023 Australian Wooden Boat Festival visit australianwoodenboatfestival.com.au

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The Hobart Observer is your monthly community newspaper, reaching over 24,000 homes and businesses in and around the City of Hobart. It is the product of Nicolas Turner, Justine Brazil, Ben Hope, Simon Andrews, Tobias Hinds and guest contributors, with support from advertisers.

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