Center for Wooden Boats (CWB) is a hands-on museum devoted to preserving the rich heritage of Pacific North West Region in the US. It is located on the shores of South Lake Union in Seattle. Its main goal is to offer learning experience through a hands-on approach. The visitors of this museum have an opportunity to engage with small craft heritage by using their hands and mind. The Center has collection comprising more than 170 Vessels (rowboats, sailboats, and two pedal boats).
There are several hands-on activities you can take part in at this maritime museum. With assistance from onsite master craftsmen, you can canvas a ditty bag, cast an oarlock, learn how to steam bend an oak frame or even take a ride on one of the canoes or sailboats. If you love to learn from expert artists, you can attend one of the workshops where the artistry of boatbuilding is demonstrated. You also have the opportunity to learn the history of boatbuilding and the contribution of Pacific Northwest in the development of the craft. The Center also features a rotating exhibit that provides more information on the rich history of Seattle.
Center for Wooden Boats is the brainchild of Dick Wagner. He and his wife Colleen Wagner had a passion for boats, and they had a huge collection of tradition wooden boats. They started renting out these small boats and within few years it had gained popularity. The idea to start a museum of small craft was born in 1976, but it was until 1981 when the Center was officially established. It has so far grown to three sites and it has over 450 active volunteers, 2,500 members, and more than 65,000 visitors each year.
CWB is part of the South Lake Union neighborhood, so there are other attractions within this area. Next to the Center is Museum of History and Industry. CWB is open daily and admission is free.