Visiting Fort Lauderdale: Where Can You Go Boating?

Visiting Fort Lauderdale: Where Can You Go Boating?

Fort Lauderdale contains 165 miles of gorgeous, mansion-lined canals. Some people have even compared the city to Venice, Italy. Boats are a way of life there, and sunshine is abundant. If you’re planning a visit, getting out on the water is absolutely essential. If you’re wondering where to go boating during your trip to Fort Lauderdale, keep reading.  Boat RentalsBoat rental companies, such as GetMyBoat and YachtsUp, offer a variety of rides. You can charter a private yacht or rent a catamaran, pontoon, or jet ski. Once you choose a boat, you can pick it up at the marina where it’s docked.  Spots To CruiseYou don’t need a specific itinerary to have a great day on the water. All you need to do is float around Fort Lauderdale’s many canals. Fortunately, the area is very easy to navigate because the canals are deep and there aren’t a lot of shoals. If it’s too windy and the ocean is too rough, the canals...
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Boating Safety Classes Offered by Fort Myers Power Squadron

Boating Safety Classes Offered by Fort Myers Power Squadron

Are you located in Fort Myers? Another boating safety course is being offered, this time in Fort Myers! America’s Boating Club Fort Myers is holding a NASBLA-approved course that will cover all general boating information, including boating safety, boating laws and regulations, navigation, and boat handling. At the moment, Fort Myers Power Squadron is the only area squadron offering in-person safety classes during the pandemic. Appropriate safety precautions will be taken during the course.  Registration begins on Sunday, March 7th from 2pm to 2:30pm at the squadron building, 314 Royalston Avenue in Fort Myers. The actual course will take place the following two weekends, on Sunday March 14th (from 2pm-6pm) and Sunday March 21st (from 2pm-6:30pm). Upon passing the final exam and graduation, the necessary paperwork will be issued for graduates to receive a Florida Boater ID card. The cost is $50 for a single person, or $60 for a couple. Complimentary refreshments will be served.  The Fort Myers Power Squadron is the...
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Lakeland Boating Safety Course: Feb 20th & 21st

Lakeland Boating Safety Course: Feb 20th & 21st

Are you located near Lakeland? If so, this announcement is for you!  America’s Boating Club Lakeland will present America’s Boating Course in two half day sessions on February 20th and 21st. This class teaches basic boating safety over the span of eight hours of classroom instruction and competes the requirements for the Florida Boater ID Card.  The class will be presented at Old Salt Marine, 1918 U.S. 98 North in Lakeland, and will run from 8am to 1pm both days. Check in begins at 7:45am. At the end of Sunday’s class, an exam will be held to complete the course. This exam will include 60 multiple choice questions.  Pre-registration is required and costs $50 per person. For more information or to register, call America’s Boating Club Lakeland at 863-667-9047.  ...
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Florida’s New Specialty License Plate Celebrates Love Of Fishing

Florida’s New Specialty License Plate Celebrates Love Of Fishing

Florida just got a new specialty license plate that will raise funds for the nonprofit Coastal Conservation Association of Florida. The license plate, which features the red drum with mangroves in the background, was designed by the graphic designer Jesse Star. It joins eight other speciality plates that raise money for nonprofits tied to fishing or fish conservation efforts.  This license plate is the second new specialty tag among 33 new proposed plates approved in 2020. Its status was confirmed on February 1st. License plates generate funds for nonprofits through a $25 fee added onto drivers’ tag registrations. The redfish tag will raise money for CCA Florida, which focuses on conserving the state’s “saltwater marine resources, expanding habitat restoration efforts, developing saltwater fisheries conservation and enriching coastal environmental education,” according to its website. ...
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Florida Manatee Season: Where To See Them

Florida Manatee Season: Where To See Them

Florida’s mild winters often include daytime temperatures in the 70s, but when temperature drops overnight, manatees seek shelter in warmer waters. Manatees flock to Florida’s springs from November to March. On cool mornings, you can usually see hundreds of them gathering in Blue Spring near Orange City. Save The Manatee Club recently counted more than 300 manatees at Blue Spring, with numbers sometimes soaring above 400. Here are some places in Florida where you can witness these majestic creatures in the wild.  Blue Spring State ParkThis state park in Orange is a prime location to view manatees when the weather cools down. From November through March, Blue Spring run is closed to human visitors for swimming and non-motorized boating, but guests can view manatees from the state park’s boardwalk. Both Blue Spring and Save The Manatee Club work together to solidify a daily manatee count, which you can see on savethemanatee.org. The club also offers manatee webcams. Cost: $6 per vehicleAddress: 2100 W...
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Great White Sharks Are Migrating To Florida’s East Coast

Great White Sharks Are Migrating To Florida’s East Coast

During the first two weeks of January 2021, there were three great white shark sightings in the offshore waters of the Gulf between Fort Pierce and St. Lucie.  Over the years, great white shark sightings have become more and more common. These animals typically repeat the same migratory patterns, so you can pretty easily predict if they’re going to be in your area every year.  OCEARCH has been able to learn a lot about sharks through its satellite tracking. The most notable shark they’re tracked is Katharine, who has been followed for the past seven years. She made a few migratory loops and is now a “proper matriarch”, weighing around 3,000 pounds and mother shark to dozens of babies.  There may be more great white shark sightings in the near future, too. Last year, in the middle of February, a group of divers outside of Palm Beach Inlet spotted a 20-foot long great white shark. So, what do you do if you spot...
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Mega Yacht Show Coming To Miami in February 2022

Mega Yacht Show Coming To Miami in February 2022

Next year, Miami’s top three boating shows will combine to create one annual mega-event.  The Miami International Boat Show, the Miami Yacht Show, and Superyacht Miami will combine to create The Miami International Boat Show. Organizers expect the economic impact to be $1.34 billion, the equivalent of three Super Bowls. This event will support almost 10,000 jobs and 100,000 hotel bookings. This will be huge for Southern Florida’s growth.  For years, the boating and yacht shows, which all took place over Presidents’ Day, dealt with confused customers who bought tickets to the wrong show or tried to access one while holding tickets to another. It’s now going to be a seamless, stress-free experience for consumers.  The mega-event land exhibitions will take place at the Miami Beach Convention Center. Unfortunately, you’ll have to wait until 2022 to attend, as the 2021 shows were cancelled due to COVID-19. In-water events will be located at Sea Isle Marina, One Herald Plaza, and Island Gardens on Watson Island....
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To Protect Manatees, Boating Safety Education is Encouraged

To Protect Manatees, Boating Safety Education is Encouraged

After an increase in manatee deaths last year, wildlife activists are encouraging a change in Florida’s boating safety system. Specifically, they’re pushing that all boaters must take a safety course that brings wildlife welfare to light.  This will ensure that all boat operators are more aware of their surroundings, from both a public safety and wildlife safety standpoint. Current state laws only require boaters younger than 33 years old to take a safety course before they can operate a boat.  More than 600 manatees died in 2020, and at least 90 were killed from boating accidents. With a required boating safety class, the hope is that this number would go down.  The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the Center for Biological Diversity are hoping lawmakers will consider the issue in the upcoming legislative session. ...
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How To Boat With a Baby On Board

How To Boat With a Baby On Board

Boating is completely possible with babies, as long as proper safety precautions are taken. While boating doesn’t have to end when a baby is born, some things will definitely have to change. This includes child-proofing the boat, heading out during less-busy times of the day, and embracing baby-friendly activities. Once these things are considered, you’re free to enjoy a sunny day on the water! When can a baby safely boat?Your baby should be at least 18 pounds (generally between the ages of 4 months and 11 months) and able to wear a life jacket. This means a properly fitted life jacket that’s intended for children under 30 pounds and includes a flotation feature that can support a baby’s head. It’s important that your baby can hold their head up on their own before their first boating adventure, to avoid head/neck injuries from bumpy water.  How can you keep your baby safe?It might seem like a good idea to bring your baby’s car...
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Safe Boating Tips For Kids

Safe Boating Tips For Kids

Drowning is the most common cause of death in children up to the age of four, according to the United States Coast Guard. When boating with minors, safety should be your number one priority. Boating with young children presents unique challenges that need to be addressed. Below are five safety tips when boating with children. 1. Wear a life jacket.All mariners should follow state laws when it comes to wearing life jackets. Make sure your children have life jackets that fit appropriately for their weight and water activity.  2. Enroll your kids in swimming lessons.Knowing how to swim is your child’s critical line of defense against drowning.  3. Make sure you have emergency gear before getting underway.Make sure all emergency gear is up-to-date and easily accessible. This includes first aid kits, flares, blankets, radios, and a portable fire extinguisher. 4. Educate your kids on propeller safety.Make sure your kids know to stay away from the propellers. They don’t need to fear the propellers, but...
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