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News notes - Mid-Atlantic

Largest regional show expands with SailFest

The 54th Baltimore Boat Show, already the longest-running and largest boating event in the area, will be even bigger in 2008 with the addition of SailFest.

More than 750 boats, educational seminars, demonstrations and family fun activities are planned for the Jan. 23-27 event. All of the 300,000 square feet of exhibit space at the BaltimoreConvention Center will be filled with boats for a variety of lifestyles and budgets.

The biggest addition to the show is SailFest, a 25,000-square-foot area featuring new keelboats, catamarans and skiffs “docked” along a replica pier.SailFest will also include more than 50 exhibitors with the latest designs in sails and rigging, sailing gear, and equipment, along with a sailing simulator to demonstrate how to work the rigging of a sailboat. More than 140 seminars led by sailing professionals will cater to the interests of both novice and expert sailors, and guests can test their skills at an R/C Sailing Pond.

Over 750 powerboats, personal watercraft, performance boats and luxury yachts will also be on display.

A 3,000-square-foot AccessoryCenter will showcase the latest marine accessories from more than 150 manufacturers and exhibitors offering accessories ranging from marine electronics to specialty fishing lures. Experts will be available at the AccessoryCenter to provide free advice, hands-on demonstrations, and informal seminars for show-goers. The 2008 Baltimore Boat Show will also have a designated Fishing Section with the latest boats, equipment and gear for boat and fishing enthusiasts.

The collection of featured powerboats includes the innovative Innespace Seabreacher, a fully-submersible, dolphin-shaped watercraft; the 14-foot Scout 140 Hybrid boat; and the Miss Geico performance race boat.

Regular Admission to the Baltimore Boat Show is $10 for adults, $5 for youth ages 13-15, and free for children 12 years old or younger. A two-day adult pass is available for $16. Advance tickets may be purchased online at . Free parking is available with continuous shuttle buses to and from the show.

Politicians commit to Chesapeake Bay’s health

Gov. Martin O’Malley hosted the 2007 Chesapeake Executive Council (EC) annual meeting in Annapolis during early December. The first such meeting under O’Malley’s Administration was conceived in an effort to reinvigorate the region’s efforts to reduce nutrient and sediment pollution throughout the Bay watershed.

“We are at a key crossroad in our Bay restoration efforts,” said O’Malley. “With the alignment of political leadership, public will and good science, we now have the moral imperative to turn back the decline in the Bay’s health decades in the making and begin restoring the health of the Chesapeake Bay.”

O’Malley was joined by Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine; Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell; Washington, D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Stephen L. Johnson and Chesapeake Bay Commission Chair James W. Hubbard, along with representatives from Delaware, West Virginia and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

During the meeting, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provided the Executive Council with a status report on bay restoration efforts which concluded that at the current pace, the 2010 goals for nutrient reduction set in the Chesapeake 2000 agreement cannot be met.In an effort to increase accountability of restoration programs, each member of the Executive Council agreed to “champion” specific actions on behalf of the partnership.

The Chesapeake Bay Program partnership has currently achieved 44 percent of nitrogen, 60 percent of phosphorous and 57 percent of sediment reduction goals, as well as 44 percent of habitat restoration and 69 percent of watershed protection goals.

Marina owner dies in work accident

Ernest “Joe” Mueller, 65, a 21-year resident of Edgewater and co-owner the AnchorYachtBasin, died of injuries sustained in a fall Dec. 4 at the popular Edgewater marina.

Mueller was reportedly working on the motor of a garage door with an employee when he fell through a skylight.

Along with three siblings, Mueller owned AnchorYachtBasin, which the family started in 1965.

The full-service marina has 125 slips for boats up to 55 feet. The yard is also an authorized Carolina Classic dealer.

Pacific Seacraft sold, moves to N.C.

The ownership and location of Pacific Seacraft Corp. have changed following a bankruptcy auction in California.But even though the company is setting up shop on the East Coast, the name will remain the same.

Stephen Brodie, a North Carolina businessman, bought the Seacraft trade name and a big portion of the assets.

Brodie paid about $85,000 for the remaining assets of the Fullerton, Calif.-based sailboat maker. This includes the trade name, molds, tooling, and other miscellaneous equipment for Pacific Seacraft boats. He also purchased five boat hulls in various stages of construction.

Pacific Seacraft Corp. filed for Chapter 11 in early May in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California. The company had racked up debts to its vendors, suppliers, boat owners and other creditors totaling $3.2 million, but had assets of only about $221,600.

On Sept. 17 the case was converted from Chapter 11, reorganization, to Chapter 7, liquidation, and the bankruptcy auction was held the next day at the company’s Fullerton plant.

When Brodie found out about the auction he flew out to California with plans to buy only a couple of molds. He ended up buying a large chunk of the assets and loaded them up on 21 tractor trailers for the move to Washington, N.C.

“I had been looking for a small boatbuilding venture for the last four or five years,” he said. “The opportunity presented itself and the stars just lined up.”

Brodie is leasing space in a former textile mill building in Washington. His first order of business will be to finish the uncompleted hulls. He then will start using the production molds he just purchased: the 31, 34, 37, 40 and 44 sailboat models and the 38-foot trawler. He also bought some older, out-of-production molds that he may reintroduce.

“I’m excited about it,” said Brodie. “We’ve got lots of possibilities.”

— Melanie Winters

C.G. continues year-round at SharkRiver

After weighing the operational requirements and the concerns expressed by members of the public and elected officials, the Coast Guard has decided to maintain year-round operations at Coast Guard Station Shark River in Avon by the Sea, N.J.

The Coast Guard considered changing the station’s year-round operational status to seasonal status — keeping the station open during the boating season and closing the unit during the winter months.

The Coast Guard held a public meeting Aug. 8, and established a public Web site to seek public opinion. About 50 local citizens attended the meeting, and 23 citizens also provided comments to the Coast Guard Web site.

Tugs builder offers upgraded warranty

Nordic Tugs says it offers the most comprehensive hull warranty in the industry. The boatbuilder’s new Gold Standard Warranty offers one-year stem-to-stern coverage and warrants the hull for 10 years against both structural failure and osmotic blistering starting with 2008 models delivered after July 1, 2007.

“Because of our extensive quality control standards and state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, Nordic Tugs do not have a history of blistering,” says executive vice-president and chief operating officer at Nordic Tugs, David Goehring. “We’re confident in the integrity of our boats and are willing to back our product with a 10-year hull warranty that includes coverage against osmotic blistering.”

Nordic Tugs previously offered a one-year stem-to-stern, five-year blister and 10-year structural hull warranty. The new Nordic Tug warranty remains transferable to subsequent owners.

New Regulator dealership in Va.

Regulator Marine and Bluewater Yacht Sales of Hampton, Va., recently announced the appointment of Bluewater Yacht Sales as Regulator’s authorized dealer for the Maryland and northern Virginia markets.

Bluewater Yacht Sales has represented Regulator in southeast Virginia and northeast North Carolina since 2001.

Regulator’s line includes 23- to 32-foot offshore sportfishing boats and the company debuted a 30-foot express cruiser in October.