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 2017 Conference Wrap-Up

Here's a quick glipse at April 2017's Teaching With Small Boats Conference at St. Michael's, MD. Thank you to everyone who came, everyone who presented, as well as Jamestown Distributers and Chesapeake Light Craft for sponsoring. We also can't thank enough the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum for hosting a great conference!


Conference Statistics

  • 150+ Total Attendees
  • 43,553 Adults Served by Attendees
  • 19,633 Youths Served by Attendees
  • 414 Organizational Staff
  • 2,663 Organizations Volunteers
  • $38,409,100 Total Organizational Budget



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2019 TWSBA Conference Wrap Up

The 2019 Teaching With Small Boats Conference at the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton, N.Y., was tremendous! We had 110 attendees from 65 organizations. The energy was terrific. Non-stop sharing went on constantly. By the end, everyone's head hurt, but we were inspired and energized!

Conference Photos

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View All Photos From The 2019 TWSBA Conference.


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TWSBA Regional Gatherings

Even though it's difficult for folks to get together, TWSBA Regional Gatherings are happening this year. If you're interested in participating, please get in touch with the contact person. And, since all these gatherings will have virtual components, you can participate from wherever you are!


Great Lakes

Hosted by All Hands Boatworks this conference will be a hybrid socially distanced/ in-person, and online with Zoom. It sounds like they are pulling together great topics!

Contact: Bill Nimke - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dates: Saturday, October 24

Location: Hybrid Online / In-Person at All Hands Boatworks in Milwaukee, WI



The conference will be held over zoom and broken up into two sessions

  • 10:30am - noon:  TBD
  • 1:30pm - 3pm:  Panel Discussion, Topic:  Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion strategies within organizations.

Contact: Jenn Kuhn - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dates: Friday, November 13

Location: Virtual Meeting


Pacific Northwest & Bay Area

The Pacific Northwest meeting is being combined with the Bay Area meeting and will be scheduled after the 1st of the year.

We'll keep you posted. If you'd like to get involved, let us know.


New England

The New England meeting will be scheduled after the 1st of the year.

We'll keep you posted. If you'd like to get involved, let us know.

If you are interested in participating in any of these get-togethers, please get in touch with the coordinating contact person. Thank you for your involvement!


Conference Information

The Teaching With Small Boats Alliance holds a biennial conference to bring together maritime educators and programs that strive to create a more maritime-based education standard. The goals of the conference are to facilitate collaboration, encourage idea sharing, identify and share best practices and projects, and strengthen connections between organizations and individuals.


COVID-19 forces the cancellation of our in-person 2020 regional conferences and the postponement of our 2021 national conference.

However, we're still gathering and learning from each other through virtual gatherings about Programming, Fundraising, and Organizational Planning. Several virtual regional gatherings are also being planned.

Create a TWSBA Account and we'll keep you posted about how you can join in.


Past Conferences

  • 2019 at the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton, NY
  • 2017 at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, MD
  • 2015 at Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend, WA
  • 2013 at Mystic Seaport in Mystic, CTconf 4
  • 2012 at the Center for Wooden Boats at Cama Beach on Camano Island in Washington State
  • 2010 at the Alexandria Seaport in Alexandria, VA


Conference Activities

Conferences span three days and include workshops, panel discussions, and hands-on experiences, as well as free time to strengthen new connections and catch up with old friends.

Workshops: Workshops provide an opportunity for successful organizations and programs to share what they've learned.  Topics discussed in these small groups have ranged from "Planning Your New Program" to "The Role of Social Workers and Counselors."

Panel Discussions: Panel Discussions are interactive discussions on a range of topics like Fundraising Strategies That Work, Leadership, and Indigenous Programs.

Hands-On Experiences: Hands-On Experiences provide opportunities to get on the waterfront and try new things, like how to use steam to bend wood, using foil boats to teach displacement and volume calculations, and integrating tools and technology into programs.