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ContinuousWave: Trips and Rendezvous
Western Michigan Rendezvous
|Author||Topic: Western Michigan Rendezvous|
posted 04-23-2010 06:48 PM ET (US)
I was talking to Buckalew the other day about all the fun we had at Homossasas and Gulf side in general with Whaler pals. I chided him that we need to throw a big Whaler bash in Michigan and I said "we built this city on rock and roll...what's our problem? We gotta do something fun..." So he said -"oh, we do that every summer - Isle Royal, North Channel..." which are perfectly fine but big logistics and timing sucks for many of us to get there so there are limiting factors.
I saw we need a beach, cool, fun places, lots of beaches and easier logistics, central location, denser population and proximity to jet airport just in case inlaws and outlaws from the Family Whaler decide to show up.
Then, to my surprise Bucka-da-lew said.
COAST GUARD FESTIVAL, Grand Haven and I say "ya, baby YA!! that's got potential..."
It's the biggest thing here all summer, Grand Haven, Spring Lake, Muskegon, Ferrysburg, Fruitport are all great places
Festival has great rep and history
We have Station Grand Haven right on the river, right next to city center and a river that is navigable for like 20 miles
We have a large inland lake right there
Fantastic State Parks - right there accessible by boat.
Historic lighthouse - right here
At least six beaches and three more inland lakes connecting to Lake Michigan, Right HERE
Salmon potential - and boats all over the place - Right here
Muskegon just a few miles North has festivals every weekend just about and might have the airshow again
Secluded beaches, fresh water and if calm Wisconsonians and Illionis folk can motor over.
What do you think???
I can't imagine Boston Whaler and local marinas not getting totally behind the BW contingent in a place like this. And for those of you not familiar w/ our great state, Grand Rapids is only 25 miles and that place is getting way cool.
Let's think about it.
posted 04-23-2010 06:59 PM ET (US)
This actually sounds like a pretty good time.
The festival is July 30 through August 8..
posted 04-24-2010 06:53 AM ET (US)
Isn't July 30 the weekend that Kevin wants to do the Second Annual Lake Michigan Crossing?
posted 04-24-2010 09:10 AM ET (US)
posted 04-24-2010 09:48 AM ET (US)
I might be able to wrangle a service call in Grand Rapids that week. Pencil my name in when you have a date. Just keep me away from the prototype anti-gravity chair....
posted 04-24-2010 09:57 AM ET (US)
I'm currently planning my Lake Michigan crossing from Frankfort to Sturgeon Bay for the weekend of July 31, but I could be persuaded to change my plans.
The problem with the Coast Guard Festival is that it is virtually impossible to find marina space or a hotel room during the festival. I don't think there's any way you could get a number of slips in close vicinity to each other. Also, keep in mind that on the weekend the Coast Guard Festival is a giant drunkfest. The waterways will be crowded with thousands of boats, any of which could be operated by a drunk. It's a fun event, but I think a different weekend would be better.
posted 04-24-2010 11:39 AM ET (US)
K Albus is very accurate with his review of the Coast Guard Festival. Great time, Grand Haven really packs them in. The river is wild, pretty much gridlocked on those two weekends. The roads, parking, restaurants, marinas, hotels, bars, etc., are filled to max capacity.
Many of the 'boats' are being used solely as a means to get a keg on the river. You'll certainly see some interesting stuff. Reminds me of the WLAV Raft Race from the old days.
posted 04-24-2010 11:56 AM ET (US)
Okay, maybe it doesn't sound like such a good time.
I had forgotten about the Door County run that weekend.
posted 04-24-2010 03:55 PM ET (US)
Concept - Feasibility phase folks!
We live here, Coast Guard week it ain't that bad but that's why we are talking about best time/place for a cool West Mich get together. There are other ports in the area: Muskegon for one and others. We could check. We don't want to mess up any other plans but I think West Michigan, Grand Haven - Muskegon area, throw Holland and Saugatuck in the mix perhaps up to Whitehall is ideal for a fun thing. All the concerns might be correct but let's keep thinking about it. SInce we work with EDCs Chambers, town councils all the time maybe I'll talk to the local officials see what they say. I think we ought to frame this as Whaler big deal thing and get keys to the cities or at least some discounts.
I ain't been around CW long enough to know what's best but I am willing to do whatever to have a good, memorable time.
posted 04-24-2010 09:13 PM ET (US)
Pete-I guess the Grand Traverse Bay and northwest Michigan idea been scrapped.
posted 04-25-2010 09:41 AM ET (US)
I don't think anything has been scrapped. Let's figure out best place, maybe more than one but must be fun. Maybe there's just too many options.
posted 04-25-2010 10:43 AM ET (US)
Grand Haven is a good place for me as I have a place to stay right on the water, and maybe a slip. Anytime this summer would be good for me too.
posted 04-25-2010 09:23 PM ET (US)
Okay the list begins: add yours. Perhaps we meet for beers someplace and discuss.
- Traverse City/Suttons Bay
posted 04-26-2010 09:37 AM ET (US)
Pete, keep in mind that there is already an essentially "annual" fall color tour rendezvous that is regularly held on Northern Michigan's Inland Waterway. See: http://www.fishweb.com/maps/inlandwater/index.html
It also seems like there's a suggestion at least once a year for a rendezvous on Lake St. Clair, but it never seems to get any further than a suggestion. A great one or two day event could be planned around cruising the Detroit River, Lake St. Clair, and the St. Clair River.
I'm always looking for an excuse to go boating, so I like the idea of more rendezvous being planned for the Michigan area. My advice to you is that if you want to have a rendezvous, you're going to have to make it happen. Just pick a location, suggest some dates, and wait for some feedback. If you try to do it by committee, it's not likely to get past the idea stage.
Also keep in mind that what appeals to some may not appeal to others. Some people would rather do the wilderness/peace-and-quiet thing, while others might prefer people watching and partying. I can get the Coast Guard Festival atmosphere if I want it on just about any weekend of the summer in certain areas of Lake St. Clair. If your going to plan a Grand Haven rendezvous, I would prefer to spend most of the day boating and sightseeing, with cocktail time in evening, rather than anchoring or docking somewhere all day to party and people-watch.
posted 04-26-2010 11:00 AM ET (US)
The majority of the local Great Lakes contingent is not into that sort of "bash" atmosphere. Surprised Dave should even be into the GC fest as he and I typically avoid the Grand River on that weekend if we can. Not to mention it's the weekend of the Frankfort to Sturgeon Bay trip. Give me open water and some space to run and I am happy. A nice beach or quiet restaurant for lunch with night caps at the dock with friends and that is a perfect day.
That said, if you are looking for a party type of atmosphere to have a Whaler gathering you have Hanky Panky Bayou on Spring Lake which is a crazy raft-off fest every weekend. Sloppy drunk spray tanned Ed Hartey wearing people everywhere (just google it)! Though there are some quieter areas of the cove to gather and watch from a distance if you like. Also, for parties there is Boat Night in Port Huron the night before the Sailboats leave for Mackinaw which is a good party. You have Gull Island on Lake St. Clair which is a weekend set up much like the group from Homossasas does. Finally there is always Put-in-bay on South Bass Island which honestly as close to Key West as you are going to find anywhere. A great down town on the waterfront with the marinas and anchorages right there, as well as a great island to go explore if you want some quiet and sight seeing.
posted 04-26-2010 11:55 AM ET (US)
For clarification - I'm not into the bash atmosphere. This was idea phase discussion and Pete had "dinged" my ideas - so I went in a new direction. :)
I can quickly get on board with a West Michigan "Sunset Coast" rendezvous - in fact, I think it would be a great place to have a "national rendezvous" for folks to drive or fly in and celebrate with the CW family.
1.) It's an easy drive from Grand Rapids (all Jet Service) or even Detroit Metro or Chicago.
I don't know if Coast Guard Fest puts our best foot forward, so to speak, for outside visitors - but I think that Grand Haven and the area can certainly host this kind of event very well when not focused on the festival. As others mentioned - we'd get 'Buried' - no docks, no hotels, no food.
Another weekend might be perfect, however.
Just thinking out loud some more. Plan it Pete - and then let us know.
posted 04-26-2010 07:36 PM ET (US)
I am gleaning from the chatter, the Florida CW members are not driving with Whalers in tow. Is that correct?
posted 04-27-2010 04:16 PM ET (US)
One possible location could be Pigeon Lake Mi. About halfway between Holland and Grand Haven. Off of the beaten path but has a very good launch and substantial parking spaces for rigs. A short hop from the launch to lake michigan.
posted 04-27-2010 08:26 PM ET (US)
Let me know when it is. Thinking about a road trip this summer anyway in the Vanagon so we will probably come.
Len and Margit
posted 04-28-2010 05:29 AM ET (US)
Direct Air, out of Punta Gorda, flys to Kalamazoo. Probably cheaper and quicker than a road trip.
posted 04-28-2010 08:34 AM ET (US)
What is Bash? Not sure what that means. We just wanna have fun and hang with Whaler pals, fish, cruise and whatever. I have no interest in Hanky Panky Bay raft up but have zig zagged through the crowd w/ 13. It's cool at end of summer when Skipper Bud throws a party
We have a ton of fun, some people have a couple beers or a cocktail but no one is falling down drunk, irresponsible or a hazard to pets and small children. What kind of people do you think we are?
I think West Mich would be a great place, with all the beaches, rivers, lakes, restaurants, fishing and various opportunities to have a Whaler party without a lot of angst. Port to port cruising, Lake Michigan salmon fishing, fish boil/BBQ somewhere - hey man, it's Pure Michigan!! so why not brag it up?
Do you think I would offer to go to any or all of the Beach Town Chambers, Town Councils or DDAs and ask them to get behind a Boston Whaler owners gathering or whatever you want to call it when we do projects and business with cities and work with pubic officials all over the state and other places?
Certainly there are limiting factors Great Lakes boaters are totally aware of - if the lakes blow up 3 ft can be uncomfortable. IF seas are down it's awesome.
So it's a concept/feasibility thing. Hell ya we like to have a good time but there's always Monday morning and so far we've kept our names out of the newspapers and off the dockets and intend to keep it that way.
CG Fest is a good thing for our area and so what if there are a lot of boats? Is it any worse than a busy weekend on Lake St Claire? OR other places with water, boats and people that is popular? We did our first Labor Day on Spring Lake and offshore Grand Haven getting pounded in our Classic 13 but still had fun.
Relax - - It's PURE MICHIGAN - let's have some fun and show off what we have to offer.
posted 04-28-2010 09:17 AM ET (US)
That was my earlier point and why I suggested other rendezvous'.
Michigan has bars. So does everyone else.
We have nice marinas. So do a lot of states.
We have places where you can mill about with a lot of other people, people watch, etc... ...so do a lot of other places.
Collossal boat rafts? Yep. So do other places.
How about towering freshwater sand dunes? Pure Michigan.
Crystal clear freshwater lakes and white sandy beaches? Pure Michigan.
Unique beach towns and quaint wharfs? Okay - only a few other places have those, so not PURE Michigan - but a healthy dose of Michigan....
If experiencing Michigan boating is the objective, then I say we invite folks for a Northern Michigan rendezvous that encompasses Grand Traverse, Mackinac, Frankfort or the like.
posted 04-28-2010 11:19 AM ET (US)
Good points Buckalew so let's work together on this. Nick is the guy who is point on Homossosas as I understand it but others work on it too not just show up. Central West Coast Mich is a good location. Some of the other places have challenging logistics like Isle Royal and N Channel making it difficult for people to get there even for those of us who live here.
We'll see how it goes but I am interested in less complications than more complications. This ain't that hard if people are down for it.
Several of us need to be involved to make it work or just show up.
That said, I am juggling schedules to go to Gulf side Florida in June for another rendezvous which is probably easier. I'd haul the Outrage 17 but Ellen is taking a graduate class Spring term and I have projects up here. Chance to get cheap air fare makes it very appealing.
posted 04-28-2010 05:48 PM ET (US)
One more thing, I have little interest in rafting up with drunks and I don't drive boats drunk but know rafting up can be fun.
My idea of rafting up boats is called HOG LINE and that's for Spring Chinook on the Willamette at Oregon City.
As regards my latest experience with Whaler pals I can assure you they are some of the finest most responsible boaters I have ever know with a mariner's commitment to safe boating and utmost consideration for others and etiquette. I assure you not ONE Manatee was harmed, kids and families were present and we coexisted elegantly with the Harley Davidson gathering and tourists we shared fellowship with.
So I say Get Together and Do Whatever, If you want to cruise the rivers then cruise the river, beach blanket bingo, then there you go, do the Hanky Panky then do that too, cruise to Saugatuck then go for it, go salmon fishing, we got a lot of 'em in Lake Mich,
For example, I have long advocated Boston Whaler 13 Races - do you think that is an original idea or part of the action at Hanky Panky? No, nope, nada - I got that idea from Wild Man, OUt of Control, Maniac Mead Gougeon who does an annual 13 race with Jim Watson for beers or lunch or whatever.
on the road to whatever...........
But Tom and Greg will fire up Educated Angler the Tiara 36 for anyone who wants to go out for Mr Chinook and his cousins Mr S. Head and Co-HO if cool guys come.
posted 04-28-2010 05:51 PM ET (US)
I've been to several Boston Whaler sanctioned rendezvous' around Michigan's N/W lower penninsula, Irish Boat shop has hosted at Charlevois & Harbor Springs, we also attended one at Torch Lake. We also attendeded one at Kelley's Island in Lake Erie, all were a lot of fun, met a lot of Whaler owners, and saw a lot of classic & post classic whalers...there is an abundance of places to hold them...
Even though I've not been to CG Fest in Grand Haven, I've heard that it is crambed with people and boats and the possibilities of over crowding, lack of dock space, and accomodations is what I think concerns a lot of people, no one that I've boated with at any of the Rendezvous are tea totalers, but I think they would like a Whaler Rendezvous in a more controlled setting, so we can dock together, etc....
That being said, if any of our out of state Whaler friends want to come up this way, I would be more than happy to pick up from airports, give them a roof over their head, let them ride north with me, and host them on my Revenge 22 WT.
posted 04-28-2010 06:56 PM ET (US)
It's popular and crammed - for sure but it's not a drunken nightmare.
My intent was to get ideas and discuss feasibility. It was a suggestion Dave and I discussed briefly. I would not, however, want anyone to assume Grand Haven Coast Guard Festival is so slammed and busy that they don't come. This is not the Motor City, it's not as crowded as events there or Chicago or even Ann Arbor Art Fest.
It's a nice event, well attended and we're all proud of it. I have no hesitation to go to it by car, bicycle or boat.
If we're around I am sure we will launch the 17 and hang out - and so should others.
Grand Haven Coast Guard Festival - PURE MICHIGAN!!
posted 04-28-2010 07:35 PM ET (US)
And I love Detroit and to to the Taste and all kinds of stuff down there so don't e hatin' on me
posted 05-03-2010 12:29 PM ET (US)
Thanks for the invite Pat. Bear in mind that I was enthsiastic about Grand Haven only as I have friends there that I can stay with and possible dock the boat if I bring it. I also understand that there is boating to be done even if the weather does not co-operate. That is an important factor when inviting out of towners to an event. I honestly don't understand why some you are crapping on Petes enthusiasm here. Nor do I understand the implication that the GCBWOA is a bunch of drunks interested in rafting up for the sake of killing a keg of beer. I've already met a bunch at a Xmas party at Pat's a few years ago and my memory of that event was one of responsible consumption of adult beverages by all. Maybe there are too many places to see in one summer and not enough time to do it, but pick something that is doable now and run with it.
posted 05-03-2010 01:26 PM ET (US)
There was no intention on my part to imply that GCBWOA members are/were anything but responsible boaters.
If that implication came across in my post - I apologize, as it was not my intention.
posted 05-03-2010 01:43 PM ET (US)
Also...my name is Buckalew. It is a proud name with a long history both in the United States, the Colonies, and before that, in it's unadulterated form, in Scotland.
I made it through junior high and USMC Boot camp, so I've heard them all. None are better than whomever changed it from Buccleuch to Buckalew when my ancestors arrived in the new World.
Maybe I'm cranky after driving 2,600 miles in 4 days to get my new boat, but still.
"Buckda" is a combination of my last name and first name (David). It is a username that I commonly use and is the result of a humorous exchange between an old college roommate and me. He has since passed away, and I continue to use it because it keeps his memory alive for me. You may use it, because I use it, but I prefer not to have other amalgams employed at a whim to address or refer to me.
posted 05-03-2010 01:46 PM ET (US)
Finally, FNO, I tried to send you an e-mail and the delivery failed.
You may want to update your profile with a current/working e-mail (or empty your mailbox if it is full and not receiving mail).
posted 05-04-2010 05:53 PM ET (US)
Dave, I corrected my profile as I had an old email address. I have corrected it, thanks!!!
posted 05-04-2010 10:54 PM ET (US)
I will now send images of Pappy's cold smoked sausage to only certain pals.
posted 05-05-2010 10:17 AM ET (US)
I know you think we don't like to have 'fun' here (see your post from the Beercan thread), but I think the problem is that you've not defined what you want.
You are always invited to the rendezvous' I plan and participate in. We have a good time. However, apparently it doesn't fit your definition.
That's fine - everyone relaxes different ways.
In this thread, you still have not defined 'fun'. I think of CG Fest and I think: Mobs of people, drunk girls and hooting and hollering guys. Heck - Grand Haven has that on any given weekend - CG Fest is worse. I also think no vacancies, lines for every restaurant, no dock space and little room for a parade of Whalers to maneuver.
None of that fits into my definition of 'fun'.
Nowhere did I mean that Whaler participants would be operating their vessels while drunk or otherwise operating in an unsafe manner...but the danger/risk increases because of everyone else on the water, not in control, and at the helm of boats that better match the size of their wallets than their capabilities as captain. That's not in my vision of fun either, nor is it something that I'd invite someone to.
Now, as for the ideas of West Michigan rendezvous, etc later discussed above - I'm all aboard...just not during drunk fests.
So there you go. I guess I'm a wet blanket, but I did find it quite odd that my name was leveraged (if it has any leveraging power here) to promote attendance at an on-the-water event that I would not attend. I can see the drunk, half naked chicks from the shore, and I'll still have mucho problems with the machismo of shore-bound attendees. It's not my scene, nor does it fit my personality.
posted 05-05-2010 10:57 AM ET (US)
So far what I see in this thread is that there seems to be a lot of interest in having a West Michigan rendezvous, but not a lot of interest in having that rendezvous in Grand Haven during the Coast Guard Festival. Also, while a number of ideas have been floated out for consideration, nobody has made any real concrete suggestions for location, dates, or itinerary. And nobody seems to want to take the lead on planning the rendezvous.
I've already got a pretty full calendar for this summer, and I don't want to be roped into planning and being responsible for yet another event, but I will try to jump-start this thing, and hopefully Pete or somebody else will pick up the ball and run with it.
Why don't we plan on getting together in Grand Haven on the weekend of July 10-11 or July 17-18?
Here's my suggestion for an itinerary:
Having made my suggestions, I will now step back and hope that somebody picks up the ball and makes this happen.
posted 05-06-2010 11:34 AM ET (US)
Relax, cooooollllll, chilll, nameste, ohmmmmmmmm, feet up, head back - Today's Bob Seger's Birthday and we lost Ernie Harwell, the freaking Gulf of Mexico could be ruined and I am late for a conference....
Well, part of the fun is to plan something where Whaler people or whomever can get together and have fun whatever that means. When Buckalew and I talked his reaction was "CG Festival" ONLY as an option and discussion point. Someone made an assumption "if you are looking for a party type of atmosphere to have a Whaler gathering you have Hanky Panky Bayou on Spring Lake which is a crazy raft-off fest every weekend. Sloppy drunk spray tanned Ed Hartey wearing people everywhere..." and I'm not sure what catalyzed that assumption.
So in a world full of problems what we need now are solutions...not critics.
My intent was to do something fun and cool w/ Whalers and encourage my friends from Florida, who have expressed interest, to come to Michigan and "party", cruise, "Whaler" (noun to verb, everyone else does it!!), bond, talk, back talk, burn our Ethanol, eat our food, swim in our Salt Free Seas or whatever. I know Len and Margit are thinking about it, hopefully Nick, Janis, Stephen, DR GOO, Tom, Frank and a whole contingent.
Martha B is into it as are others. Tom said we can take the Tiara 36 out for some salmon slammin' which is an awesome boat and great time.
K Albus is exactly right.
I don't mind taking point on this but would expect others to jump in and help out an old man like me.
Let's keep an open mind, understand that FUN can mean anything, that yes we are the Woodstock Generation who stopped a war, knocked off a president and were in the streets for Civil Rights, remember the Oil Embargo and Walter Cronkite, jammed with Motown AND rock and roll
And today is Bob Seger's birthday, like 62 and if he was here I'd take him out in the 13 or 17 and grab a couple of cheeseburgers, beers and have a blast. IF LEN, NICK and Fran were here, we'd amp up the plan dance and sing, Hollwood Nights, Down on Mainstreet, Night Moves, Ramblin Gamblin Man and Against the Wind and NO I aint' havin' no stinkiing midlife crisis, never had and never will.
So let's figure it out...I'm still trying to get to Beer Can in June.
posted 05-12-2010 07:19 PM ET (US)
Saw Buckalew last night in Grand Haven with TomG and we're gonna cook up something over here this summer. We'll take point but others can jump in w/ ideas and possible dates.
Let's start w/ dates. No not during CG Festival!!
I think Dave suggested end of July, first of Aug. Plus I think some of the FL people might be heading this way.
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