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"I know for sure that what we dwell on is who we become."
– Oprah Winfrey


The Skin Boat School is a state non-profit corporation that specializes in instructing students in the building of skin on frame boats. Numerous tools, both hand and power, will be used during the construction process of your boat. The Skin Boat School has all the tools you will need for your project. You are welcome to bring your hand tools. While you are at the school, you should not use a tool (either personal or one belonging to the Skin Boat School) if you are unfamiliar or unsure with its proper usage.  Since students who come to the school have a range of background experience, it is imperative that you let the staff know if you are unfamiliar with a tool. The staff will be happy to assist you in using or learning to use a tool properly and safely. Neither the Skin Boat School nor the staff can be responsible for your safety, you must take responsibility for keeping yourself safe, and for using the staff as a resource.  Eye and ear protection should be used at all times. We provide ear protection; please bring your own eye protection, dust and vapor protection, and first aid kit.



Work hours during the summer usually run from 8 am to 7 pm each day.  Students may start earlier or work later if they wish, but power tools should only be used from 9 am - 7 pm. Out of respect for fellow students and our neighbors, quiet time is 10 pm until the following morning. 
If you are not building your boat as part of an intensive workshop, please use the website calendar to determine when there are open sessions and call a few days in advance to let us know when you are planing to come. This ensures that there is adequate space and staff for everyone, and allows us to inform you of any last minute changes in the schedule. Please be sure to fill out a contact card for the Rolodex.


The Skin Boat School facility is an ever growing and changing place, and we take pride in trying to provide a comfortable and enjoyable workspace for our students. With a large number of people and projects coming through, it’s easy for things to quickly become chaotic and disorganized. Please help us to help you by taking responsibility for whatever area you are working in and the tools you are using. Please take pride in leaving the area as clean or cleaner than you found it.  We are not your janitors, and all the tools have a home, and should be put back after use or at the end of your session - there is nothing more frustrating than wasting time looking for a tool! If you are unsure where a tool lives, please ask. Please allow 15 minutes before the end of your session for clean up.



We have local and long distance phone lines available for student use. All cell phones work well on the property with the exception of Verizon, but with a short walk you can find adequate service for this as well. We have a online computer in the studio but prefer if you bring your own if you need internet access. The Skin Boat School has wireless modems and most of the property is a hot spot.



Students are allowed to stay on the property as guests while they are working on their boats. There are a few bunks available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Camping is also available anywhere you choose on our 10 acres. There is a bathroom and shower available, as well as a refrigerator and some rudimentary cooking facilities, though these facilities are limited and need to be shared by everyone on the property. Due to the high impact caused by having numerous people stay, the school asks that students donate one hour of service per night of stay. Typical tasks include cleaning the communal spaces or work areas as this aids greatly in the overall upkeep of the property. The Skin Boat School does not provide any food or bedding.



The main studio has two heat sources---a wood stove and a diesel boat oven. These are available for use with supervision of a staff member. Fire extinguishers are located around the shop. Please familiarize yourself with the locations.  Although smoking is permitted on the property, we ask that you do not smoke in communal spaces (the main studio, barn, etc.)  This will help to ensure that the Skin Boat School is a comfortable place for all students.



Over the years we have had many people in recovery at the Skin Boat School. We are very proud to provide a safe alcohol- and drug-free environment for anyone who seeks it. So please respect this clean zone. We don’t mind if you like a beer or wine with your dinner, but please enjoy this in town. If you are on any prescribed medication that may impair your judgement or compromise safety in any way, please advise your chief instructor.



We do not ask for deposits, but the School often has numerous boats in the works at once, some of which are completed over a long period of time. We ask that you provide half the tuition when  you have completed half of your boat (after ribbing), and the other half when you have completed your boat. This donation ensures that the school will continue to operate.

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