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Aug. 9, 2011
Vol 8, No 1-11  

No Time Like the Present to Buy a Boat


Great buys are out there; explore possibilities with us in September


Even though the economy can sometimes feel like it's dragging its knuckles on the ground, nonetheless potential buyers are noticing that some great buys are out there. It's not just us who think so, either. In a recent Soundings Trade Only newsletter, NADA Guides reported a surge in used-boat interest, part of a trend of consumer shopping growth.


Capt Fred Davis  is on it. His September Boat Smart column offers solid advice about how to narrow the fantastic range of choices to the boat that's perfect for your family. He warns to remember to take boating classes if you're new to the lifestyle.


buying boat 

Don't buy sight unseen! Is one of Capt Davis' tips.

Photo courtesy Fred Davis


For those who like to delve into a subject, Kate Godfrey-DeMay's analysis of the designs of the sailboats used in September's Commonwealth Yacht Club Cup Regatta

should be right up your alley.    



Doug Davis and friends aboard


Sparkie (fifth one

Photos courtesy Doug Davis  


This month, the lead story is a doubleheader. First, Bobbye Kenyon invites us to "Hit the Water in Style," with two powerboats made right here in the heartland: the Rinker Captiva 216 BR from Nautic Global Group, and the Formula 290 FX4 from Thunderbird Products.  


powerboat helm         

Rinker Captiva 216 BR in action   Helm of a Formula 290 FX 4      

Photos courtesy of manufacturers


Gary Kramer, in the meantime, has discovered deep enthusiasm for a small, tough boat that goes where larger ones cannot: the Aspen C-90, designed by Larry Graf. Here three peeks inside its well-thought-out interior.

   aspen helm area space

From left, Aspen C-90 head, helm area, side of the king-sized bed     Photos by Gary Kramer


Kramer also talks about the C-Dory and the unique culture that has arisen among its owners, who call themselves C-Brats. Kramer attended last year's C-Brat Get-Together in Guttenberg, Iowa. Here's a shot of him and Bill Fiero, and a picture of some of the boats lined up at Hawkeye Marina in Dubuque, where they cruised for lunch.


HLB signmarina

Gary Kramer, left, and Bill Fiero   C-Dorys at Hawkeye Marina

Photos by Gary Kramer


After finding the right boat, Sandy Lindsey helps you "Pick the Right Towable for Your Needs." Here's one possibility, the Rave Slingshot III.



Rave Slingshot III

Photo courtesy of Rave Sports


The marinas this month are Findlay Marina by Debbie Fox, and Lake LBJ Yacht Club and Marina by Dorothy and James Richardson.


finlay marina

Part of Finlay Marina from the lake

Photo by Debbie Fox
Llano Country Courthouse, near Lake LBJ  

Photo by James Richardson 


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Don't Look Now, But Here Come the Boat Shows


Hard as it is to believe, but after a breather of a few

boat show
Photo courtesy Les Cheneaux Islands Antique Wooden Boat Show and Festival of Arts


we are once again hearing from organizations mounting boat shows in late summer and fall. Perhaps the premier antique boat show,  the Les Cheneaux Islands Antique Wooden Boat Show and Festival of Arts folks sent us this wonderful shot from last year.  


Here are some shows to note:


34th Les Cheneaux Islands Antique Wooden

Boat Show and Festival of Arts

Hessel, Mich.

Aug. 13  

(906) 484-4081 (Barb Smith)


Sponsored by Les Cheneaux Historical Association, this show is proudly the largest in nation featuring antique and classic wooden boats.


Michigan City In-Water Boat Show

Michigan City, Ind.

Aug. 19-22

(440) 899-5009



Antique and Classic Boat Show

Pewaukee, Wis.

Aug. 20

(262) 691-2341

More than 30 antique and classic boats from southeast Wisconsin will be moored along the Pewaukee Lake shoreline. Some of them date back to the 1920s.


Tampa Boat Show


Sept. 9-11

(954) 441-3227


For complete listings, go to our Web site.


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Check out the latest Video of the Week, here. 


For Boaters, By Boaters, it's the place to connect!



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Chris-Craft 37' - T270 IB, 6.5 gen, low hours, large salon. Large main aft cabin with queen bed, front cabin with double bed, boat sleeps 6.Two bathrooms, two air conditioners, radar, auto-pilot, fire extinguisher system throughout. Fresh water boat--Ideal for living or a weekend retreat. $49,500,, 225-235-9695.

lick here to see more beautiful, affordable boats. 
To list your boat with us, click here.

Wacky Regattas Put the 'Zany' in Summer


For fun or fundraising, boaters explore cardboard, more to build craft


From the southernmost point of our coverage--the Florida Keys, and the westernmost--Muskogee, Okla., we've heard about two separate "regattas" using materials that we usually expect to sink.


In the spirit of fun we expect from the Keys during the hottest time of year, on Aug. 19-20, visitors to Key Largo can decide what floats their boat at The Anything That Floats "regatta." Resourceful teams race boats constructed out of household materials that could include wood, PVC, jugs, buckets, pool noodles, plastic wrap, lawn furniture or cardboard. Old T-shirts can be pressed into service as sails, and oars and paddles are permitted. Motors, foam, floats, rafts or pool toys are not allowed, however, to compete on the half-mile buoyed course.


Prize categories include Best Costumes, Most Creative Vessel, Best Hard-Luck Story, and Vessel Containing Most Participants That Still Floats. I'd love to hear some of those hard-luck stories!


For more information about this event, go to,, to Facebook at, or call 1-800-822-1088.




Left, 2010 River Rumba starting line, Pink Cadillac with Zachariah Vercruyssen & Richard Arnel
Photos courtesy Port of Muskogee


The following weekend, Aug. 26-27, Muskogee Parks and Recreation Department and the Port of Muskogee, Okla., join forces to present the 4rd Annual River Rumba/Cardboard Boat Regatta at Three Forks Harbor. The Parks and Recreation staff members will give free cardboard to all registrants in Saturday's race. On Friday, things kick off with a parade of boats and the band Infinity playing live music for the harbor party.


Here's a "Viking ship" that showed up last year:



From Left, Chris James, Roger Davis, Mike Voegeli, and Mark Wilkerson

Photo courtesy Muskogee Parks and Rec Dept

New lyrics to "Okie From Muskogee" played over the speaker system added to the fun.


To join in this event, or just to watch it, go to or call the Parks and Rec Department at (918) 684-6302.


Several sites here in the St Louis area have sponsored cardboard-boat races, either for charity or just as an excuse to get dunked on a hot day. If organizations in your area are doing it too, we'd love to hear about them.

E-mail me, Lee Braff, here, to tell us about it.


Happy (Cardboard Boat) Boating,


Lee Braff

HeartLand Boating Editorial Offices