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News notes – New England

New tug dealer on the East Coast

The builders of American Tug, Tomco Marine Group, have announced a new dealer for the Northeast. Prestige Yacht Sales, with offices in Stamford and Westbrook, Conn., now sells the American Tug 34, 41 and the new American Tug 49 Limited.

“The American Tug has already found a following in the Northeast,” says Michael Frank, president of Prestige Yacht Sales. “We have watched the fleet of smart-looking American Tugs and their owners cruising Long Island Sound and New England. This is a line of well-made yachts that our customers will enjoy.”

Prestige Yacht Sales has two American Tugs currently being completed by Tomco Marine Group in La Conner, Wash. Both will be specially equipped for the Northeast including the new flybridge option.

Prestige Yacht Sales will present the American Tugs at the Newport Spring Boat Show and at the Norwalk and Fall Newport Boat Shows. In addition, Prestige Yacht Sales will be coordinating owner’s events, seminars and a rendezvous for the American Tug owners.

New cruise ship is launched

Guilford, Conn.-based Pearl Seas Cruises recently announced their new ship was launched at the Irving Shipyard in Halifax, Nova Scotia. This is the first of several ships the company plans to build for world service.

The line’s new 335-foot ship can carry 214 guests and features 108 suites — all with private balconies. The ship will be outfitted with the latest navigation and communication technology, in addition to Rolls Royce active wing stabilizers.

The 2009-10 schedule is available on the Web site and showcases the cruise line’s 29 itineraries, visiting more than 100 unique ports throughout Eastern Canada, New England, Canadian Maritimes, Caribbean, Central America, Panama Canal and the Great Lakes.

For information, or to request a color brochure, call (800) 983-7462 or visit .

Composite repair training program offered

New England Institute of Technology, working with various boating industry companies and government agencies, has introduced a composite repair training program for residents of Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts designed to give them the skills needed to enter the workforce as a composite repair technician.

The training program was developed with the assistance of Goetz Custom Boats and the expertise of New England Tech’s Marine Technology Department. The outcome is a 208-hour, hands-on training program that runs in the evenings at Goetz Boats in Bristol, R.I.

Composites are used in a variety of industries, including marine and aviation. The use of resins such as vinyl ester and polyester are becoming more widely used for many different uses. In less than four months, participants of this training program will learn boat repair and construction based on industry standards. They will learn to work with composites and apply different processes to boat construction and repair.

The first session of the program debuted March 31 and will run through June 30.

Interested parties should contact Fred Santaniello at (401) 739-5000, ext. 3382 or .

Plans for Nova Scotia In-Water Boat Show

The Nova Scotia Boatbuilders Association (NSBA) has announced the finalized plans for the 2008 Nova Scotia In-Water Boat Show. Part of the Mahone Bay Classic Boat Festival, the in-water show will take place July 31-August 3 in the town of Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia.

The event will feature a “Fast and Furious Boat Building & Race,” where contestants have four hours to build a boat and then complete a race course under sail and paddle, as well as displays by local artists and musicians and a number of activities for children, including a “TinyBoatBuilding” workshop.

Visitors can watch a traditional wooden dory being towed down the launching ramp by a team of oxen and then tour a modern rigid inflatable patrol boat. Also on display will be high-tech patrol boats, RIBs, and trailerable trawler yachts as well as hand crafted small dinghies, sailboats and camp cruisers.

For information visit or

Inn bolsters fleet with a sport fishing yacht

Chatham Bars Inn in Chatham, Mass., will sail into the summer with a fleet of vessels that will enhance the resort’s presence in the sport fishing community and expand its recreational boating offerings.

With the addition of a Viking sportfisherman, Chatham Bars Inn now boasts a fleet of five vessels, representing a $4 million dollar investment.The resort was also recently granted approval to build a private pier on its property, which is scheduled to be completed in May.

The new Star Fish, the 52-foot Viking Sport Fishing Yacht, is the largest and most powerful vessel in the fleet. The $1.7 million boat combines luxury accommodations with the latest digital electronics. The interior boasts two elegant staterooms, a complete home theater system in the salon, a fully equipped galley for entertaining and a 145-square-foot cockpit.

Manned by seasoned fishing guides, the Star Fish will be available for chartered fishing trips to both resort guests and the fishing public. It will be available for both full and half-day charters. Captained by Chatham’s Christopher Smith, the vessel will also compete in many of the sport fishing tournaments held Cape-wide annually.

Beginning this summer, Chatham Bars Inn will also make its entire fleet available for chartered trips to special events on the Cape and beyond. Groups will be able to charter a vessel for an excursion to Boston for the July 4 Esplanade celebration, to watch the Figawi, to sail to Nantucket for the annual Nantucket Wine Festival, or just for a leisurely day on the water with friends and family.

For information on charters or the resort, call Chatham Bars Inn at (508) 945-0096 or (800) 527-4884, or visit .

Study focuses on Point Judith Harbor

The Coast Guard is conducting Waterways Analysis and Management System review of Point Judith Harbor of Refuge. The review is used to determine the effectiveness of aids to navigation within the waterways.

The following areas will be reviewed: Point Judith Harbor of Refuge; and Point Judith Pond.

The data gathered in the analysis will be used to determine the need for altering or modifying the channel and hazard markings. The last survey for Point Judith Harbor was completed in April 1992.

Mariners, boaters and other concerned parties are invited to comment on these waterways by:

• Attending a public meeting at Coast Guard Station Point Judith (1470 Ocean Rd., Narragansett, RI., 02882 on May 8, from 6-8 p.m., and/or

•Complete a survey by May 15 available at

Windjammer Weekend dates are set

The 14th Annual Windjammer Weekend is scheduled to return to CamdenHarbor Aug. 29–31, and feature the largest annual gathering of Maine’s historic windjammer fleet and a parade of sail against the pine-shrouded backdrop of Camden Hills.

Nearly 30 schooners will converge on Camden for this year’s event. Crews will offer tours and cruises to passengers. Windjammer Weekend offers a Build-A-Boat contest, a family treasure hunt, the Harbor Hounds Dog Show, lobster crate races, a book fair, a free movie screening of “Captains Courageous” that encourages moviegoers to wear foul weather gear, a pie-baking contest and the 4th Annual Chowdah Challenge.

Sportfishing boat builder adds dealers

Scout Boats has added two national dealers to its current roster, bringing the total number of dealers in Scout’s growing network to 70. Scouts can now be purchased at Cabela’s in East Hartford, Conn., and Gifford Marine in Dartmouth, Mass.

Since its founding nearly two decades ago, the Summerville, S.C., builder turns out sportfishing, fish n’ ski, walk around, flats and bay boat models ranging from 14 to 35 feet.

Gansett Cruises to host NewportHarbor tours

Jeff O’Brien of Gansett Cruises in Newport, R.I., recently announced that this fall he and his crew will partner with Viking Tours, the city’s oldest group tour operator, to offer specialty cruises to guests disembarking from Crystal Cruises.

Under contract as the shore agents for Crystal Cruises, Viking Tours’ executives added the new harbor tour aboard the M/V Gansett as a replacement for tours that were formerly conducted aboard their own company’s Viking Queen, a vessel that retired from service in 2006. Since 1960, Viking Tours of Newport has been providing groups with a full range of receptive and transportation services for sea and land tours of “America’s First Resort.”

The new harbor tour was created by Viking Tours of Newport in collaboration with O’Brien. It will be a leisurely two-hour excursion with a detailed commentary about Newport harbor and the southern part of Narragansett Bay.

The M/V Gansett, which also offers daily tours and private charters, is Coast Guard-certified for 49 passengers and provides modern amenities aboard.

Shaw and Tenney: 150 years of paddle-making

In 1858, Shaw and Tenney began making paddles and oars at a shop on the StillwaterRiver in Orono, Maine. Manufactured with water-powered machinery, the paddles and oars helped to propel thousands of small boats during a time when skiffs, peapods and canoes were vessels of commerce.

Today, almost 150 years later, Shaw and Tenney is the third oldest manufacturer of marine products in America. The shop still manufactures the same quality products, using virtually unchanged designs. Some of the original machinery used in 1858 is still in operation today.

The Tenney family retained ownership until about 1970 when the company underwent three short-lived transitions to different owners. In 1978, the company was purchased by Paul and Helen Reagan, who broadened the product line and expanded Shaw and Tenney into the retail marketplace. In 2003, the Reagans retired and ownership passed to Steve Holt and Nancy Forster-Holt of Orono. The Holts and their children continue to carry on the long standing tradition of producing quality goods.

The company’s product line has expanded over the years and now also includes masts and spars, boat hooks, marine hardware, flag poles and yardarms.

Extended protection offered on E-TEC engines

Consumers can take advantage of offers during the Evinrude E-TEC “First Cast of Spring Sales Event.” From April 15 through June 30, all consumers who purchase a new boat package equipped with Evinrude E-TEC engines or re-power their boat with Evinrude E-TEC engines will receive a five-year, factory-backed limited warranty.

Re-power buyers can also choose a 12-month, no-payment, no-interest financing option, or obtain a rigging rebate of up to $800. The offers apply to all new, unused model year 2008 and earlier Evinrude E-TEC engines 40-horsepower and above.

The five-year warranty includes a three-year BRP factory warranty plus an additional two-year B.E.S.T. (BRP Extended Service Terms) coverage.

Dealer marks a milestone

Hellier Yacht Sales, founded on Oct. 18, 1968, by John R. (Bob) Hellier, celebrates its 40th anniversary this year.

Ownership was transferred to Wayne L. Burdick June 16, 1977, and Vincent J. Petrella became part owner in 1997 before retiring in July 2007. Hellier Yacht Sales has remained a small intimate business throughout the years with six or seven employees. Hellier was conceived and sustained upon people, products and business relationships, according to the present owners.

Hellier was the first sailboat dealership in the country to be certified under the new NMMA/MRAA Certified Dealership program and is also a Certified Professional Yacht Broker (CPYB) endorsed brokerage house.

Hellier has represented Caliber, Freedom, Pearson, Seaward, Tartan and currently Catalina, Jeanneau and Island Packet Yachts.

“We are thrilled to celebrate 40 years in business and we owe a debt of gratitude to our employees, manufacturers and customers, all of whom have helped us reach this milestone. We look forward to many more years of exceeding our customers’ expectations,” said executive vice President/ GM Rick Dieterich.

Electronics firm’s free digital charts offer

Lowrance, a world-leading brand in marine electronics since 1957 and GPS navigational systems since 1992, announced a limited-time, free digital-map promotion.

Anyone who purchases a color Lowrance LMS sonar/chartplotter combo or 5-inch color GlobalMap chartplotter from an authorized Lowrance dealer between April 10 and July 7 will have a choice of a free plug-and-play Lowrance Fishing Hot Spots PRO, or Lowrance LakeMaster ProMaps mapcard or a Lowrance NauticPath USA coastal chartcard — redeemable with a mail-in coupon and proof of purchase – $99 product value.

For information, visit or call (800) 324-1356.

Flotilla set for a return to New Brunswick

Fundy Flotilla 2008, sponsored by Points East magazine, is scheduled to return Aug. 9-24 in New Brunswick, Canada.

More than 30 boats had registered to participate as of late-February. The flotilla route this year begins at Northeast Harbor and ends at the Saint John River. Organizers say this has been the most popular of all the flotilla routes since 1999.

Stops will include one at the fishing village of Cutler for a lobster dinner at the Methodist Church. The fleet will re-enter the U.S. at Eastport, the easternmost city in the United States.

The cost is $4,500. For information and to register, visit .

Marine manufacturer gives donation to IYRS

Restoring historic vessels is a highly-rewarding and educational experience for boatbuilding students. With this in mind, Bass Products recently donated electrical panels to help the International Yacht Restoration School (IYRS). The contribution included four AC source selector panels and four AC/DC breaker panels.

“We will use these panels to expand our training programs and teach students about marine electrical systems,” said Clark Poston, program director at IYRS.IYRS is a non-profit institution devoted to yacht education and maritime preservation. Since 1993, it has returned nearly 100 historic boats to the water.Located in Newport, R.I., the school teaches the skills, history, art and science of boatbuilding and restoration.

Bass Products manufactures electrical panels used for power distribution on boats and specialty vehicles. Established in 1970, it also introduced the first backlit, waterproof circuit breaker panel capable of working continuously in flooded cockpits.

Engine manufacturer lengthens warranty

Yamaha Marine Group recently announced that effective Jan. 1, it has lengthened the limited warranty period for Yamaha Marine replacement parts, accessories, instruments and gauges sold by its authorized dealers.

Customers will now receive a full year of warranty coverage from date of purchase against defects in materials or workmanship, direct from Yamaha, subject to certain exclusions and limitations.

“Moving from the previous 90 days to a full year’s limited warranty coverage on most of these items is a comfort for our customers and serves to further Yamaha’s reputation for quality,” said John Rigsby, Yamaha Marine Group national sales manager.

Yamaha Marine has won the marine industry’s C.S.I. Customer Satisfaction Index award every year since its inception.

Nominations sought for boating access award

With more boaters having a hard time gaining access to the water, nominations for the second annual BoatU.S. Recreational Boating Access Award are being accepted. The award recognizes those who have succeeded in preserving or improving public waterway access.

Waterfront development, regulatory red tape, poor planning and restrictive covenants are just some of the factors contributing to the decline of waterway access for recreational boats.

“Municipalities are levying hefty tax hikes for marinas. Boat clubs and yards are assessed at highest-use rates, which makes them targets for high-density housing, and some marinas simply give up after being stymied by years of red tape required to get a permit,” said BoatU.S. vice president of government affairs Margaret Podlich.

“Access also includes storage issues. Local ordinances and property covenants increasingly prohibit boat storage — even in your own backyard,” she added.

Judges will look at four criteria: First, the challenges faced in retaining or increasing access in an area; Second, the direct impact or measurable results of the solution; Third, the level of success in increasing awareness of the issue in a community; And fourth, “repeatability,” the ability to take the successful approach and adopt it in other areas.

Examples of solutions could include creative public/private partnerships, changes in land-use planning or permitting processes, tax incentives, legislation or public ballots, publicity or public education. Eligible activities need to have been undertaken in the last three years.

Applications are being accepted from June 15 through Oct. 1 and winners will be announced by Oct. 31. Previous entrants are asked not to reapply.

New Bahamas charts from digital nav firm

Navionics recently added the Bahamas Special Edition to its Gold+, Platinum and Platinum+ marine cartography products. Available as a new special chart area, the Bahamas Special Edition charts cover the northern Bahamian waters from Grand Bahama and Abaco to Long Island in the south, as well as the southeast coast of Florida.

Navionics’ new Special Edition charts provide exclusive surveyed content with spot sounding and depth contour detail that has previously been unavailable. The charts are available in Navionics’ range of good, better, best solutions.

Bahamas Special Edition chart packages are available at marine and sporting goods stores throughout the United States and Canada at a retail price of $129 for the Gold+ edition, $199 for the Platinum edition and is included free with the purchase of Navionics Platinum+. For information, call (800) 848-5896 or visit .