SWFL Boater’s Survival Guide: Safety Tips

In 2019, the Coast Guard counted 4,168 boat accidents that involved 613 deaths, 2,559 injuries and approximately $55,000,000 in property damage as a result of recreational boating accidents. Operator inexperience is one of the primary contributing factors in accidents. No matter where you’re cruising in SWFL, these boating safety reminders will help you avoid drama, danger, and disaster on the water.
Read more “SWFL Boater’s Survival Guide: Safety Tips”

3 Deka Batteries


Between the engines, helm displays, trolling motors, live wells, sound systems, lights, and other gadgets, marine batteries are the unsung heroes of boating. Your boat’s batteries serve two primary functions: starting engines and running accessories. Some batteries are built for one function while others can do both, so it’s important to know your marine battery basics.  Read more “HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT BATTERIES FOR YOUR BOAT”

Edison Sailing Center sailing at sunset


Here in Southwest Florida, boating isn’t just a lifestyle, it’s a passion that brings us together on and off the water. And whether boaters realize it or not, it takes a village to keep our boating community going! So, we’re taking a closer look at two local organizations that support boaters and make significant contributions to our area’s marine industry through education: Edison Sailing Center and Fort Myers Technical College.


We live in a waterfront playground, so it’s no surprise most Southwest Floridians either own a boat or get to tag along with friends and neighbors from time to time. We’re also lucky to have plenty of rental boats available along our coast. For full-time residents and seasonal visitors alike, taking a loaner for a spin is a great way to enjoy our waterways without the long-term commitment of boat ownership.

Read more “BOAT RENTALS 101”

Buying New vs. Used: Things to consider while you’re considering.


It is a question boat buyers have faced for decades. And, while there is no perfect answer, there are pros and cons to each, and a right and wrong way to go about it. Breaking it down, there are five key areas to consider:

One of the first reasons people consider used boats is cost. Once a boat is 5-10 years old, the depreciation factor starts to cause a considerable gap between used boat prices and their comparable new counterparts—for the most part. However, value-priced new boats can often be close in price to many used alternatives, and come with all the advantages of buying anything new; warranty, ability to finance and the benefits of the most up-to-date technology (things I will expand on shortly). These all enter into a price vs. value analysis that can’t be ignored if you are to avoid the regret associated with many buying decisions.

Hand in hand with the price factor is ability to finance. If the used boat you are buying is not terribly old, its residual and loan value might make it a sound purchase that doesn’t deplete your savings to afford—provided your bank writes boat loans if you are buying from a private party. But as many used boats don’t qualify, it might need be a cash deal. On the flip side, new boats are easily financed and even give you the ability to add options and accessories to the amount financed, allowing you to outfit the boat how you want it and build it into your payment.


The advances made in boat and engine manufacturing in the past decade are considerable. The old adage “they don’t build them like they used to” can often be seen as GOOD news, as today’s products are ofter more reliable and maintenance free than their older counterparts. There are, of course, exceptions to this rule but, on the whole the quality factor almost always favors new.

Even the best boats have issues from time to time. This is where warranty protection comes into play. New boats invariably come with warranties and used boats occasionally have either transferrable warranties from the original owner, or you can buy an extended, third party warranty. The extended warranty option often comes with conditions, however, such as excluding pre-existing problems, waiting periods, and deductibles that water down their value.


Finally, regardless of whether you buy new or used, I suggest buying from an established boat dealer. Private party sales are recipes for post-sale regret as a private seller usually has no motive—or obligation—to take care of you should something break or be discovered shortly after the sale. Dealerships have reputations to protect and the profit from the sale of your boat (and others) allows them to take care of things professionally and they typically stand behind what they sell. It’s your best bet to not being sorely disappointed.

So before you make your decision, I urge you to consider these five factors and weigh your options. A little planning now can save you a world of regret later.

By Keith Yunger
President, Bayliner Boats

Cape Coral Cruise Club Revisits Fisherman’s Village Marina


Despite a rocky, rolling, breeze driven, Charlotte Harbor, eleven hardy Cape Coral Cruise Club vessels and their crews maneuvered their way to Fisherman’s Village Marina in Punta Gorda for the October 21-23 cruise. Counting the boat crews and folks who traveled by land yacht, over 30 club members enjoyed all or some of planned activities over the 3 day event.

While some went fishing, others played card games, went biking on Marina provided bicycles, or visited the local art galleries. All enjoyed shopping at the local craft and tourist shops on Fisherman’s Village concourse. Warm weather and light breezes added to the pleasure of afternoon pool time where many members floated and shared stories of the day.

Steve and Nell Winner coordinated the cruise and attending members enjoyed daily hot breakfast casseroles prepared by Nell. As is customary with this group each afternoon ended with happy hour snacks and docktails in the Captain’s lounge. The staff at Fisherman’s Village Marina are quite accommodating in that the Marina makes the Captain’s lounge available at no added cost.

Wednesday was a pre-arranged pizza party in the Captain’s lounge with several pizzas delivered by a local restaurant. All enjoyed pizza along with their favorite beverages.


Thursday evening was the group dinner party at the “Captains Table” restaurant on the second floor at the north end of the concourse. All participants enjoyed a wonderful salad bar and meal overlooking Charlotte Harbor while watching the sun set on a beautiful clear evening.


The Friday morning departure saw all boaters safely exiting the harbor and traversing much calmer conditions on Charlotte Harbor and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. The Cape Coral Cruise Club has been making Fisherman’s Village Marina a fall cruise destination for years and it is a cruise that regularly takes all the slips that the marina makes available.

The Cape Coral Cruise Club is open to new members who own a boat with overnight accommodations and reside in the Cape Coral / Ft. Myers area. For membership information please contact Phil Kryger at 239-541-0236. View a short picture video of recent Club activities and read additional Club information on its website www.c-c-c-c.org Like us on Facebook.

By Steve and Nell Winner