Michael O’Day, founder of Admiralty Boat Club, displays a Chris Craft radio-controlled model.

The Admiralty Boat Club of Kingwood was founded by Michael O’Day, with a small group of friends with a common interest in vintage scale model radio-controlled boats.

O’Day started the club in the spring of 2012 as a means for camaraderie and social connections.

“The community was in need of a place where individuals with scale model boats could meet regularly in the Kingwood area,” said O’Day, who said the group meets two or three times a year at Kingwood’s River Grove Park near the small canal between the parking lot and the soccer fields, weather permitting. This event usually happens on Thursdays when the park is less crowded. The meeting time is from 10 a.m. to noon.

“Members are individuals with an interest in radio-controlled model boating ranging from World War II ships to modern motor yachts and oceangoing tug boats,” O’Day said. “Some members are retired and some are active in their careers. The members are brought together because of a common interest in radio-controlled model boating and the friendships that follow by getting to know one another.”

The club stages model displays at locations in the community such as the Kingwood Public Library.

“We also have group running sessions at different ponds in our area,” O’Day continued. “There are no gas-powered race boats, only electric driven vessels. This is to prevent noise pollution that would disturb neighbors near the pond where we operate the radio-controlled boats.”

O’Day said his interest in radio-controlled model boats began at the age of 6, when his mom gifted him a small ship model.

“I started my hobby with radio-controlled boats in 1983 when I purchased a G.I. Joe Jersey skiff,” said O’Day. “The skiff is 48 inches in length with a robotic G.I. Joe at the tiller. Since that time, I have collected World War II R/C boats as well as oceangoing tug and harbor tug boats from the 1950s era.”

The radio-controlled model boats and ships range in length from 36 inches to 54 inches. “In order to maintain tranquillity at our running locations, the boats that we operate are powered by electric motors and are not of the racing type,” he said.

“The building of our scale model vessels normally takes from one to two years to construct. Most of the hulls are constructed of fiber glass or fiber glass over wood,” he said.

O’Day explained that in order to prevent a boat loss, their boats are not operated in bodies of water where there is a running current.

“Sometime we connect tug boats stern to stern to see who has the most powerful vessel,” O’Day said.

For additional information on the Admiralty Boat Club, contact O’Day at 281-358-6952. 

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