Every Tuesday evening from 6PM–9PM volunteers gather in the Dolphin Club boathouse to hammer, sand, and varnish under the guidance of boatbuilders Julia Hechanova and Jon Bielinski. Anyone and everyone—member and non-member alike—are welcome to join in.
The work runs the gamut of basic tasks like sanding and polishing all the way to complex projects including gravings, riveting, carving, steam bending, and beyond. No experience required.
While a crew is hard at work repairing the boats, another crew is in the kitchen preparing dinner. At 9PM we set down our hammers, paint brushes, and knives and have dinner together.
Boatnight was started by Jon Bielinski in 1984. Before that the club hired a boatbuilder every forty years or so to repair the boats. In the 1950s, it was a man named Bill Richards who used to be a ship carpenter on a square rigger. After Bill fixed all the boats—and there was no more work to do—he left.
When Jon began his work in 1983 he realized that members needed a space to learn how to take care of the boats. And so boatnight was born. The biggest project has been the rebuild of WIELAND. In 1997 we relaunched the boat after a five-year overhaul, much of it accomplished during Tuesday nights.