Hand-built Canoe Offered for Fundraiser

by Jeanne Joslin

EAST CRAFTSBURY – Last winter one of Vermont’s foremost artisans, Phil Pike of Little Creek Canoe and Kayak, offered to build a 16-foot cedar strip canoe for the Craftsbury Community Care Center to raffle off as a fund raiser.

Wood-strip-constructed, Pike’s canoes and kayaks are designed and built to be pleasing to the eye while at the same time being functional watercraft. Whenever possible, Pike uses wood harvested from area trees like white cedar, black cherry, and white ash, with some western red cedar for accent lines and other “gingerbread.”

For the Care Center raffle, Pike has designed a 16-foot variation of a Ted Moore-designed “Bob’s Special,” a two-person canoe with a hull made of local white cedar and gunwales, and seats and deck plates made of white ash. In Pike’s words, “she’s a working and pleasure boat with a nice waterline and a minimum of gingerbread.” The boat carries two paddlers and plenty of gear for a canoe camping trip on moving water, and it glides smoothly, handles well and offers initial and secondary stability for the fisherman or nature enthusiast.

For the past 25 years, Craftsbury Community Care Center, a non-profit, level three residential assisted living facility in East Craftsbury, has held an auction and a large cook-out meal to support the Care Center. The auction attracts hundreds of local residents that gather to meet with friends and neighbors, enjoy the cookout, and possibly take home an item from the auction. The raffle of Phil’s canoe will be the first of a string of raffles the Care Center hopes to establish to replace the July auction and cookout.

Ticket sales for the Care Center raffle are limited to 200 tickets at $50 each. The drawing is scheduled for noon on Saturday, August 8, at the Craftsbury Farmers’ Market. Tickets are available by emailing ccccenter@myfairpoint.net; at The Miller’s Thumb Gallery in Greensboro; at the Care Center website, CraftsburyCommunityCareCenter.org, and from board members. If still available, tickets may be purchased before the drawing on August 8 at the Craftsbury Farmers’ Market where the canoe will be on display.