GiveBIG for Lifelong Learning

This year’s GiveBIG is Tuesday, May 3rd. Donate to CWB through GiveBIG on May 3rd and Seattle Foundation will stretch your funds to make a bigger impact. Don’t want to wait? You can schedule your gift now!

We’ve saved our final #givebigforboats story for Founding Director Dick Wagner. In the late 1960s, Dick and Colleen Wagner recognized the need to afford the public the opportunity to see and try out traditional wooden boats before they became extinct. They began The Old Boathouse, renting classic sail and row boats from the decks of their houseboat near the Fremont Bridge. In 1976, The Old Boathouse became a hands-on small craft museum called The Center for Wooden Boats. Since its humble beginnings, CWB has grown to its current dynamic presence on Lake Union. One of CWB’s visions is to promote lifelong learning through making maritime craft and skills education available to all ages. Experience gained through our classes and programs can last – or even change – a lifetime. The January 19th groundbreaking for the Wagner Education Center reflected the commitment to experiential learning of our Board, staff, volunteers and donors and supporters.

CWB promotes participation by making maritime craft and skills education available as a lifelong learning experience. How do you think the Wagner Education Center and its supporters have come together to aid in this crucial vision?

CWB was bursting at the seams; we were the victims of our own popularity, with too little space for our existing programs. With a larger space for boat restoration and maintenance, more space for field trip and youth programs and enough space for our staff to work in, we will be able to offer more programs to more people. We couldn’t do this without the ongoing support of our amazing volunteers and donors.

What do you envision or hope for in regard to lifelong learning and programs at The Center for Wooden Boats?

We’ll always be finding new ways for visitors to learn about our small craft heritage and the arts and skills of our maritime past. We will continue to add to the quality of life for our local community and for the thousands of people from around the world who visit CWB each year.

How have the programs of The Center for Wooden Boats impacted the Greater Seattle area?

Whether it is just walking the docks or taking sailing lessons or sending your children to our day camps or coming yourself to learn to build a boat or sharpen your woodworking tools, CWB has become ingrained into the fabric of our community. More and more, we help people realize the importance of our small craft heritage.

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