LAKE GEORGE, NY – A very generous and historic donation will allow the Lake George Association to expand its education and outreach programs in a unique way – on a historic boat powered by electricity.
The donation has allowed the Lake George Association to acquire a 34-foot Elco Cruisette directly from Elco Motor Yachts, which has been building such classic wooden boats for over 100 years. This historic boat was fully renovated by Hall’s – a process that included removing the original engine, gas tanks, and other components and replacing them with a brand new environmentally friendly Elco EP-7000 inboard electric motor.
“It’s a stunning donation to the LGA,” said C. Walter Lender, Lake George Association Executive Director. “We are pleased and humbled to be chosen for this gift and are honored at the trust that has been placed in us. The new vessel fits perfectly with our educational mission and water protection mission – and will allow us to expand our outreach programs and do even more to serve our members and the Lake as a whole.”
“I understand that that is exactly why the donation was made,” said Nick Lamando, General Manager of Hall’s Boat Corporation. “For more than 130 years, the Lake George Association has been working to protect Lake George – and has a well-earned reputation for doing important work and bringing together people and organizations to do what is best for the Lake. We’re pleased to have been able to provide this boat to the LGA and to have a part in helping to expand their reach and their critical work.”
Hall’s Boat Corp. has been operating on Lake George since 1928.
The LGA’s Elco Cruisette was built in 1941 and was originally outfitted with gasoline powered propulsion. With its new environmentally friendly electric motor, it has a cruising range of about 65 miles at speeds of up to 8.5 knots.
“The boat is ideal for educational outreach programs,” said Lender. “The motor is so quiet that there is no need for voice amplification, making the setting more casual and conversational. The switch from gas to electric will also help protect the Lake for future generations. It will also give us the opportunity to explore the watershed in a different way, and allow our project partners to join in that exploration.”
The LGA’s plans on uses for the new vessel are still developing, but initially we expect to use it for:
- Touring project sites on the shoreline;
- Reviewing watershed issues from a new perspective;
- Performing smaller educational outreach programs, both for municipal officials and for project and educational partners;
- Bringing homeowner associations out to explore their shoreline;
- Using it as a platform for scientific experiments as needed.
Elco built more than 4,500 boats – electric powered and gas powered – since its founding in the 1890s. It is estimated that only about 200 of the original craft survive, including the LGA’s Cruisette.
Among its customers are the famous personalities of the last century: Henry Ford; Thomas Edison; Charles Lindberg; John Jacob Astor; Bernard Baruch; Hiram Walker; The De Beers family; Baron Nathaniel de Rothschild and Czar Nicholas II.
With a customer list like that, it’s clear that Elco has a rich heritage – it is the founder of electric production boats and is the leader in reliable marine electric propulsion systems. Elco offers the highest quality and most efficient pleasure craft by using proven, traditional designs and pairing them with the most advanced technologies in motors and controllers.
In addition to the electric motors, Elco made history by developing and manufacturing patrol torpedo (PT) boats for the US Navy during World War – small, maneuverable boats that allowed the US and Britain to take the fight to the enemy and track larger vessels.
For more than 130 years, the Lake George Association has been the guardian of Lake George water quality: performing in-the-ground projects to protect Lake George water quality; investing in recreational and safety programs (including remapping and reinstalling navigational buoy locations); and educating generations of watershed residents about the ways they can help keep Lake George clean.