Submitted: 05-26-2006 by ralphwd
I had the pleasure of buying a used Tennessean directly from Merrimack, and in the process met Jim the owner, Randy Pew who designed my canoe, and Scott who actually built it. I brought my 7 year old son to pick up the canoe in Crossville, TN and we got to see where these canoes are made. I was expecting a factory., What I saw was a very small group of guys who are the stewards of an art passed down from generations past and who care very much about what they make and how satisfied their customers are. I could have saved a few bucks and bought a plastic boat from a chain store. But I've had my boat out several times now and can tell you it worth every freakin' penny. It is beautiful, handles like a dream, is light enough for my old bones to toss onto the roof of a Suburban solo (and did I say it was beautiful). Look at their website and you'll see a picture of a Tennessean with a crowd of admirers around it. I SWEAR the exact same thing has happened to me every time I've had it out: "What kind of canoe is that?" "What's it made of?" "Did you make that by hand?" "How much did THAT cost?"
Take it out on a beautiful morning or at dusk. Paddle it tandem or solo. Soak in the beauty of the boat and your surroundings, and you'll have what I call a "Bill Mason Moment." You'll know immediately why this canoe is a special thing. Life's too short to ride in a canoe made of recycled drink cups from the stadium. Buy this boat, enjoy this boat, and make sure these fine people can keep making them like Randy's family has done for generations.