A San Diego Father’s Day weekend tradition, the San Diego Wooden Boat Festival is the premier annual event for Southern California wooden boat enthusiasts and provides a rare opportunity for the general public to view some of the most beautiful and well maintained wooden crafts up close. While this event features mostly well preserved vintage vessels there are also plenty of new crafts that have been handcrafted with skill and meticulous detail.
The weekend festivities include live music, a local food truck, a variety of booths, activities for children and a raffle with a large assortment of valuable items donated from local businesses.
Many vessels will be open to the public for on board viewing. Please note that all attendees will be required to remove their shoes before boarding any boat. We ask that you tread lightly as many of the wooden boats in the festival are very old boats.
The event is sponsored by Koehler Kraft Boat Yard and is held at the Koehler Kraft Facility and adjoining marina. It began in 1990 as a tribute to Clarence Koehler Sr. who passed away in 1986. Clarence Koehler Sr. founded Koehler Kraft Company (formerly Mercury Marine) in 1938 as a builder of a popular line of mahogany sport fishing boats and racing runabouts. He moved the operation to its current Shelter Island location in 1952.
The popularity of the event has lead Koehler Kraft to use the proceeds to benefit local charities. In 2018 Koehler Kraft donated the proceeds to The Sea Scouts division of the Boy Scouts of America. For over 100 years Sea Scouting has promoted better citizenship and improved members’ boating skills through instruction and practice in water safety, boating skills, outdoor, social, service experiences, and knowledge of our maritime heritage.