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'Wake up, Maggie, I think I got somethin' to say to you' - first-time boat show entrant wins award

Maggie Mell's pride and joy is the Maggie May, a Chris-Craft Capri that won captain's choice in its category

Whitefish Chain Boat Show Maggie Mell June 2022
Maggie Mell, owner of the Maggie May, a 1960 Chris-Craft Capri, talks about her boat with onlookers Saturday, June 18, 2022, at the Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show at Moonlite Bay in Crosslake.
Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal
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CROSSLAKE — Maggie Mell didn’t have the only Chris-Craft on display Saturday, June 18, at the 35th annual Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show in Crosslake.

But it’s a pretty sure bet she had the only boat there that rocker Rod Stewart has blessed.

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This was Mell’s first show and she enthusiastically shared her story with those who walked down the dock to see her pride and joy - the Maggie May, a 1960 Chris-Craft Capri - with Stewart’s song “Maggie May” playing on the runabout.

Mell’s Maggie May was a 50th birthday present a few years back from her husband, John Schonberg. They live on Rush Lake on the Whitefish Chain, and Mell said she water skis behind the boat.

Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show overall
Classic boats line the docks at Moonlite Bay Family Restaurant and Bar on Saturday, June 18, 2022, for the 35th annual Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show in Crosslake.
Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal

She took her first ride in a classic boat at age 6 with her grandpa in Michigan.

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“I said to myself at age 6, ‘Someday I’m going to have one of these boats,’” Mell said.

In 2019, she realized that dream.

Mitch La Pointe restored the Maggie May, a name Mell was called as a child.

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Classic boats line the docks at Moonlite Bay Family Restaurant and Bar on Saturday, June 18, 2022, for the 35th annual Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show in Crosslake.
Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal

She shared the story of her husband finding a box of red towels with “Maggie May” stitched in white on them while cleaning the garage about 10 years ago.

“He said, ‘You didn’t buy towels for a boat we don’t have.’ I said, ‘Yes, I did,’” Mell said.

She hoped to win at the show, and realized that dream too. The Maggie May won captain’s choice in the Best Runabout 19 Feet and Under category.

Mell called it a “huge compliment with all of the stunning woodies in this show” on her Facebook page, where she said she was thrilled that her first boat show was a huge success.

Regarding the boat’s blessing by a well-known rock star, Mell said she saw Stewart in Palm Beach, Florida, at a restaurant. To her children’s horror, she went up to Stewart and told him she got a boat and named it Maggie May, and she asked him if he would bless it.

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“And he (Rod Stewart) said, ‘Absolutely. I hope it’s an old woody,’” Mell said.

Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show replica
People talk next to Dean Wilson's home-built 2021 Rushton Launch replica Saturday, June 18, 2022, at the Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show on Moonlite Bay in Crosslake.
Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal
Whitefish Chain Boat Show 100 year old boat
Dave Thomson's 37-foot Elco was all decked out for its 100th birthday celebration at the Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show on Saturday, June 18, 2022, at Moonlite Bay Family Restaurant and Bar in Crosslake.
Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal
Whitefish Chain Boat Show cowboy hats.JPG
Onlookers admire the boats on display Saturday, June 18, 2022, at the Whitefish Chain Classic Boat Show on Cross Lake's Moonlite Bay.
Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal

Nancy Vogt, editor, may be reached at 218-855-5877 or nancy.vogt@pineandlakes.com. Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Nancy.

Nancy Vogt is editor of the Pineandlakes Echo Journal, a weekly newspaper that covers eight communities in the Pequot Lakes-Pine River areas - from Nisswa to Hackensack and Pequot Lakes to Crosslake.

She started as editor of the Lake Country Echo in July 2006, and continued in that role when the Lake Country Echo and the Pine River Journal combined in September 2013 to become the Pineandlakes Echo Journal. She worked for the Brainerd Dispatch from 1992-2006 in various roles.

She covers Nisswa, Pequot Lakes, Lake Shore and Crosslake city councils, as well as writes feature stories, news stories and personal columns (Vogt's Notes). She also takes photos at community events.

Contact her at nancy.vogt@pineandlakes.com or 218-855-5877 with story ideas or questions. Be sure to leave a voicemail message!
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