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Placid Boatworks

Company Info

Charlie Wilson's involvement in the canoe industry began when he designed a series of revolutionary, monocoque, portage packs for canoe camping in 1983. In the mid-eighties, Charlie was drawn into technical canoeing and the FreeStyle paddling community, co-founding Conclave, a series of national, on-water, canoeing clinics.

An American Canoe Association Instructor Trainer, Charlie chaired the ACA's Instruction Council from 1996 through 2000. During his tenure as its first Chair, the ACA FreeStyle Committee developed workshops and instructor standards and Interpretive Paddling Competitions. Charlie chaired the ACA's Bylaws Revision Committee, served two terms as National Secretary, one as Vice President, and was elected President of the 30,000 member group in 2001. His initiatives have included increased emphasis on market research and simplification of instructional programs, both to increase outreach to the paddling public.

He began writing on paddling technique for Canoesport Journal, and has contributed to the American Canoeist, Canoe Magazine, Currents, Paddler, Paddling, Paddlesport, River and Wooden Canoe magazines and several event and club newspapers. He wrote a chapter for Cliff Jacobson's Basic Essentials of Solo Touring, co-authored FreeStyle Canoeing, and Introduction to Canoeing and re-edited Appalachian Whitewater for Menasha Ridge Press. Editor and principal author of the ACA FreeStyle Instruction Manual, Charlie is working on three books on Modern Paddling Technique.

Charlie joined Bell Canoe Works of Zimmerman MN in 1993. Working with designer David Yost, he conceptualized the FIRE, NORTH and Magic canoe series, and designed Bell's hallmark trim. He served as marketing director and sales manager for Bell Canoe Works, before retiring to Lake Placid, in New York's Adirondack Park.

A popular presenter at canoeing events, including the Jersey Paddler's Paddlesport, Adirondack FreeStyle Symposia, La Lousianna Symposium, LL Bean's NA Canoe Symposia, Inlet's Paddlefest, and Midwest Mountaineering's Canoe Event, Charlie's presentations include Efficient Paddling, Paddle Design, Hull Design & Hydrodynamics, and Camping for Paddlers. He often gives FreeStyle demonstrations. When not paddling, promoting it, or writing about paddling, Charlie may be found skiing, mountaineering, or bird hunting, often with his sons. In his spare time, Charlie can sometimes be found practicing his "air paddling" technique in the SpitFIRE plug.

His recent commitment to Placid Boatworks, a local manufacturer working solely in the Adirondack market is an understandable rededication to innovative, targeted, design and superb quality construction. It's what he's always enjoyed doing.

Joe Moore's educational background is in Geography and Natural Resource Management and Administration. He has worked as a jounalist in the past and spent more than 13 years with an Adirondack not-for-profit environmental group whose mission was to preserve and protect the wild, natural character of New York's Adirondack Park. He served initially as membership coordinator and later as a park policy analyst, reviewing state and private project proposals as well as land use and water protection policies.

Most recently, Joe started Moore Environmental Consulting. His latest project, working with a grant administered by the New York State Adirondack Park Agency, is identifying and implementing methods to improve parking and hiker safety along the busy Route 73 highway corridor.

Joe is an accomplished woodworker with experience in everything from furniture building to home construction. He has an extensive background in outdoor sports, competing in road cycling and nordic skiing. In 2004, he won two gold medals (10 km freestyle and 20 km pursuit) in the 40-44 age group at the Empire State Winter Games and a gold medal at the Keskinada Loppet in Hull, Ontario, in the 29 km freestyle event. He was a double gold medalist (10 km classic and 20 km pursuit) in the 35-39 age group at the 2003 Empire State Winter Games. Other favorite outdoor pursuits include hunting, fishing and, of course, paddling.

As a craftsman, the idea of building the very highest quality hulls in design, materials and performance coupled with hand finishing them in exotic, attractive and durable trim materials persuaded Joe to join Charlie in forming Placid Boatworks.


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