Spring Transition 2016: The Personality of the ICW

 Jekyll Harbor

Jekyll Harbor

The personality of Florida's ICW in the northeast quadrant is totally different than the southeast or west coast. I am sure the Atlantic waters have a lot to do with this. The people are also different. Many people in this area stay in Florida the full twelve months. They like the change of seasons and they experience a wider temperature variable. Many people from other parts of Florida and from all over the world flock in this direction of the Atlantic Coast in the summertime. My experience of other geographical areas of Florida is that they skip way out of state shortly after Easter or by June at the latest. The history in the northeast Atlantic coast is intriguing. America's oldest communities are here. Much effort and investment has been made to preserve the heritage. The state and federal park systems have wonderful venues available to the public for reasonable fees. Many areas are free. Parking in many areas is free. Many areas are free of crowds! The majority of the coastline is accessible to all, not just the wealthy elite. Condos and houses don't own the waterfront.
Some of the most delightful views in the whole state are experienced in this region.


The Moorings in Vero Beach is a class act. Eau Gallie Yacht Club in Indian Harbour has a totally dedicated, enthusiastic and welcoming membership. Going through the Mosquito Lagoon section is a nature lovers dream. From the minute you arrive at Halifax River Yacht Club in Daytona Beach you feel welcome as family by dock master Pete. The Marina at Hammock Beach is our east coast home port and a wonderful place it is! St Augustine is a favorite for history buffs. Fernandina Beach couldn't be much more charming. The cruise along the ICW in the northeast quadrant is far from a ride in a ditch!!
If you want to join us on one of these passages, just ask!

 

Go with The Flow Boating Style

Going for a few hours ride or going for a long journey in a boat requires preparation and flexibility. It is much more complicated than jumping in the car and taking a drive.
The weather! No matter what the weather spokesperson predicted, Mother Nature has her own way of controlling our plans. If Mother Nature chooses we change our plans even at a moments notice. You see, we are pleasure boaters. Bad weather and boating don't mix.
If we happen to be in the middle of a jaunt when Mom has a temper tantrum we try to go into plan 'b' mode. Safety is #1!
Sometimes plans are delayed....days or weeks....whatever it takes

Mechanical issues!
Every good captain does their best to make sure the craft is in good form. Long before a boat ride numerous details are considered and addressed. There is long term maintenance. Professional time and considerable dollars are required to keep Grampstr's Pride in ship shape form. We don't wait for a problem to arise. In most cases we try to service before there is an issue. Even diligence gets a wrench thrown at it now and then. Minutes before debarkation a last check list is covered. Sometimes there is an issue. Most of the time there is not. NOT doing a final inspection can lead to disasters and an unpleasant memory. The decision to abandon a trip due to mechanical issues may be the best decision ever!

Passengers!
Everyone reacts differently to life on the water. Some people are born fish. They have no physical, mental or emotional challenges with hitting the waves. Amazingly sometimes even these folks have a bad water day. They usually respond positively to adjustments. Sometimes even they need solid ground to get it together. Gotta do what ya gotta do!
We have some friends who enjoy the boat at the dock. We have some friends who are okay as long as the boat is moving. We have some friends who like to look at pictures of the boat!! There are even ones who could care less about the boat in any circumstance but enjoy our company in other venues😜
Okay, so passengers who are open and interested and capable of boating are a rare breed!!! These are the friends we are thrilled to share the Grampstr's with😘

Spring Transition 2016: New Equipment!!

 The Field Club

The Field Club

Grampstr's Pride has added a new tender. Rigid Boat's 12 foot sport tender with a 30 horsepower Evinrude outboard motor that has a top speed of 25 mph with four adult passengers is our new baby.....appropriately named Grampstr's Joy. It is perched on a new custom hydraulic lift  swim platform built by TNT lifts. Both are proudly American made right in Florida just like the Grampstr's Pride.  This tender is built with the grampster in mind. It even has a customized Grampstr's pole to assist with getting on and off the boat safely. It also has a three step swim ladder to make tubing and swimming fun activities. We look forward to offering these new amenities to our charter guests.

 Rigid Boat's 12 foot sport tender

Rigid Boat's 12 foot sport tender

Spring Transition 2016: Ohh the Food!!!

Venice Yacht Club is nestled between the ICW and the Gulf of Mexico. This club has found a way of bridging its members between semi formal and relaxing casual. On this trip we were lucky to arrive on pasta night. The chefs created personalized dishes for each guest. There was shrimp, clams,  scallop, sausage, beef and chicken. Veggies included spinach, artichokes, olives, mushrooms, peppers, onions, capers. Sauces were as creative as you wished with scampi, tomato, Alfredo, vodka sauce. I know I left out numerous ingredients!! Oh, garlic!!!And yes, pastas:  spaghetti, penne, fettuccini, and gluten free.
All I know is, if you wanted it, they had it!
Add to this being able to order from the menu if you didn't care for pasta night!!  I know, it's all about the food, right??
Wrong!! The Venice yacht club is located within reasonable walking distance from a wonderful little downtown dotted with numerous shops and restaurants.  Go in the other directions and you can be entertained for hours by the activities at the inlet to the gulf. From sunrise to sunset and beyond Venice is an endearing community.

Spring Transition 2016: Travel Across Florida

Grampstr's Pride took a leisurely crossing of the state of Florida. The first portion of the journey focused on the treasures of Sarasota: Sarasota Yacht Club, Bird Key Yacht Club, The Field Club Yacht Club and Marina Jacks. Each venue has its own charms and distinctions. The city of Sarasota is expansive and diverse. We did not see anywhere that would classify as 'the bad side of town'. The attractions of this community could keep one busy for weeks. It is hard to choose a single favorite because each area has many highlights.
I do have to admit that The Field Club is my overall personal favorite yacht club in Florida. I love the history. I have an affinity to preserved treasures. The entire staff is dedicated to the satisfaction of its members and guests.  Everyone is made to be felt welcome.  The food is outstanding. Join us sometime on the Grampstr's Pride and find out for yourself!