Join Date: Dec 2005
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Re: Is sailboat ownership dying ( or at least sick)
I suspect what you're seeing has as much (or more) to do with families needing two incomes to make ends meet, with job and other demands on peoples' time making recreation less attainable. Plus it's easier to buy/rent a tent trailer and go on a road trip than to figure out how to sail a boat.
Another head scratcher is the sheer number of boats that are in the marina, covered in green and birdsh*t, and never leaving the dock. In our area presumably someone is still paying $4-5K/year to 'keep' something they clearly never use.
This must be a regional thing. My marina, and this whole general area, has a very active sailing culture. Not saying we don't have derelicts around, but I am not exaggerating when I say that there are so many boats going in and out of our marina during the season that you sometimes have to sit outside in the channel and circle around to wait your turn to come in and dock. And the entrance to Middle River is like the freeway sometimes with all the boat traffic going in and out, and a lot of it is sail. Ever been boating in the Annapolis area? They don't call it the sailboat capital of the world for nothing. I'm sure it's less than it used to be, but there are still a lot of sails flying around here on any given weekend during the season.
We have a little sailing center run by the county at the end of our street. They have quite a large fleet of little 12' sailing dinghies that they offer classes on. I love seeing them all out in the Bay loaded with kids learning to sail. I would love to see more of that. Maybe kids might like it more if they learned it that way, as a fun activity with other kids, rather than just being dragged along with their parents.