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David "Duke" Hassinger crafts cedar-strip canoes in a shop he built at his home on the south shore of Long Lake near Hawick. The joy is watching the creation take shape. "You don't really have a full grasp of what it's going to look like until it's done,'' he said. He's currently building a larger tandem that will be able to carry two paddlers and all of their gear on wilderness trips. (Tribune photo by Tom Cherveny)

80-year-old Hawick, Minn., man paddles canoes made by his own hands

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HAWICK -- There are two different kinds of people who craft their own cedar strip canoes, according to David "Duke" Hassinger.

"Some people like to have the ones they can hang on the garage wall to show to their neighbors and friends,'' said Hassinger. "I want it to be pretty too, but I want it for utilitarian purposes. I love to paddle.''

At age 80, paddle and craft he does.

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Tom Cherveny
Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.
(320) 214-4335
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