Well, the venues are booked, the program is out, the boats are lined up and more than 268 volunteers have already signed up to be part of the largest wooden boat festival in Australia (well, actually one of the largest in the world!). With 427 registered boats being painted sanded, polished and buffed in preparation for the big show, we are going to put on a display that will please any wooden boat fan with a heartbeat. The entertainment program alone is worth a festival of its own and we have great new surprises lined up for the Children’s Village, including a circus school with a nautical theme. The ANMM International Wooden Boat Symposium will see some of the world’s leading authorities on wooden boat design speaking to capacity audiences at the Dechaineaux Theatre and the Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council will have you salivating over fresh crayfish and other great Tassie seafood prepared by mega-chef Tetsuya Wakuda. You will see exciting action on the water as well, with a keenly-contested match race between the Dutch yacht Oranje (owned by the King and Queen of The Netherlands) and local veteran Derwent Class yacht Gnome. Julie Burgess will also be on the water to defend her 2015 win in the Wrest Point Cup ketch display. We have a completely re-vitalised Shipwright’s Village, with master craftsmen demonstrating traditional skills and even a demonstration of the elegant craft of fly-rod making in split bamboo. You won’t be going hungry, either, with more than 60 vendors of fine Tasmanian food and drink on site and a wonderful spot to enjoy it – the Waterside Tavern and Beer Garden overlooking Kings Pier Marina. Is there a more enjoyable way to spend four summer days on the beautiful Hobart waterfront? Not in our book!