Making waves after finishing a five-year-long project

Jarrod Schoenecker,

Mick McGuire’s 16-foot, hand-built canoe on display at the Arts and Heritage Center in Montgomery. (Jarrod Schoenecker photo)

Wood and Metal on display

City Council Member, Mayor, Kolacky Days Grand Marshal and business owner are just a few of the hats Mick McGuire has or is wearing. In 2021, he added wooden canoe builder to that list.

“I’d seen a number of these canoes and thought that it would be kind of a fun project to take on,” said McGuire.

He started the canoe building project in January of 2013. With time limitations of running his landscaping business in the months generally from April to December, he spent mostly just the months of January through March working on his canoe. In between, McGuire says he would tarp up his labor-of-love project in his work shop until the next year.

McGuire figures he has roughly between 300-350 hours of labor in making the wooden canoe. “There are people out there that do this for a business and they are much more efficient at it than I am. It was quite the project. Would I do it again? Probably not. It’s a lot of work and I did it once for myself to prove that I could do it.”

“It was kind of expensive too because of the materials. I also had to buy some tools along the way I didn’t have, such as a palm sander, and orbital sander and fiberglass tools. But, I probably have about $1,000 tied up in just the materials,” he said. “It was learn-as-you-go. It was a great project....

To see more on this story pick up the January 18, 2024 print edition of the Montgomery Messenger. 


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