Crisfield's Chesapeake Boats Rebuilding Update

The first of three planned buildings of a rebuilt Chesapeake Boats facility near Crisfield, Md., is about two-thirds  of the way to completion.

On June 27 a massive fire completely destroyed the original 18,500-square-foot building, which housed a robust boat building operation and a building supply business. Firefighters from as far away as Accomac, Va., rushed to suppress the fire. Two and a half hours after the blaze was detected, the building and the contents were reduced to rubble, including two boats in production—a 32- and a 46-footer.

The Evans family of Evans Boats near the Chesapeake Boats property quickly offered indoor space to allow Chesapeake to continue work while Chesapeake owner David Mason sorted out rebuilding plans.

Mason and his crew have a 36-foot center-console, a 48-foot pirate-style excursion boat and two 46-footers under construction. One of the 46-footers is going to Texas Parks and Wildlife, the fourth such boat Mason has built for the agency. The pirate boat is going to an operation in Washington State.

Chesapeake Boats builds a variety of custom powerboats based on the classic Deltaville Chesapeake deadrise concepts for commercial and recreational purposes. The company has also made a name as a builder of New England lobster boat hulls and popular pirate-style boats to host parties of kids and adults.

-Gary Reich

Talk of the BayBeth Walsh