The Whiskey Plank Celebration!
On Tuesday January 20,015 the CHALUPA CREW installed the WHISKY PLANK (last plank) Below is information and background on the “WHISKY PLANK”
A whiskey plank is the last plank which needs to be put in place to finish a ship’s hull. Although a ship is far from finished once the plank has been installed, mounting it marks a major milestone in the construction of a ship, and many shipbuilders treat it as a cause for celebration. This term is most widely used in the boating community, although it sometimes crops up in other industries as well.
You may also hear the whiskey plank referred to as the shutter plank, since it closes up the hull once it has been put in place. After a whiskey plank has been put in, the hull can be treated, sealed, and painted, and work can begin on the inner fixtures of the ship. Because this marks a turning point in construction, it is traditional to take a brief moment to celebrate the mounting of the whiskey plank; this celebration has traditionally involved shots of whiskey all round.
In the early stages of construction of a ship, it can be hard to see what’s going on, and it sometimes seems like nothing is really happening, as planks get nailed or riveted on here and there. Once the whiskey plank goes on, however, the ship really seems to start to take shape, and people can visualize it out on the water. Often, the ship’s owners and the owners of the shipyard come to see the whiskey plank installed, and sometimes they will even take a few ceremonial swings of the hammer to celebrate the event.
Several Foundation members along with our dedicated volunteer boatbuilding crew joined in the activity with a “shot” after driving one of the Whisky Plank nails.
The Saint Augustine Maritime Heritage Foundation is a resource for inspiring community, business, corporate and government participation in organizing and supporting maritime projects, activities, events that focuses on showcasing our historic waterways.
Our mission, is to promote an understanding and awareness of the nation’s oldest city and waterways, its maritime heritage and to support greater connectivity and utilization of this magnificent asset. An essential aspect of this activity is the recognition and promotion of the significance of the Hispanic Cultural Heritage as an essential part of the story of America. The signature event that will showcase life and activity in 16th Century St. Augustine is the construction of a 16th century Astillero (Boat Yard) at Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park that houses a working replica of a utility work boat called a Chalupa.
We recently were selected as a Legacy Project for Focus 450 St Augustine.