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How to get your Family on the Water this Weekend
If you are busy at work and it's Friday afternoon you may be limited in your options but can still enjoy the water. See if any of these adventures will fulfill your weekend fun.
Paddleboards / Kayaks / Canoes / Rowboats / Paddle boats
If combining a little exercise with sun and fun is your goal then any of these will get you on the water without much planning. Most waterfront areas offer rentals and provide the required equipment such as paddles and life jackets. Do a quick Google search for watercraft rentals in your area and it should turn up a few options. No boating license will be required for non-powered watercraft and short of a couple of forms you should be on the water quickly.
Demo Days / Open Houses
Check out your local boat dealerships for these events. It's a great place to get exposure to many different types of boats and talk with others that have been bit by the boating bug. The Brokers will have a few boats gassed up and ready to give you and your family a ride on the local waterways. They will provide all safety equipment and cover the expense of fuel. If you are lucky they may combine this event with a cookout. A free meal and a boat ride makes for a wonderful day.
Maybe you want to spend the day fishing or just relaxing while exploring the local waterways. Chartering may be your best option. A quick Google search for local charter boats should turn up some good options for the adventure you desire. Fees can run from a couple of hundred dollars to a couple of thousand depending on the type of thrill you want. Fishing charters are typically billed by half-day or full-day but provide all the equipment needed. Some offer meals while others allow you to bring your own Yeti stocked with your choice of snacks. Day cruising the local waterways is another great way to get the family on the water. Many different boat options are available depending on the experience you want. Check with local marinas for recommendations as prices and options vary.
If it is Monday and you have the week to plan, a few more options are available. If you have a love for water there is no better way enjoy the day than having the freedom to point the boat in any direction your wieh.
Boatsetter, Freedom and Carefree are national rental companies but many local marinas also offer boats for rent. The advantages are someone else keeps up with the maintenance and cleaning of the watercraft. Many different programs are available from simple day rentals to yearly contracts. All will require the driver to comply with the local and state boat licensing laws, which can take a few days to obtain. My suggestion is to get the license class out of the way now before you miss that perfect weekend. Check out the Boatdipity blog about "Do I need a license to drive a boat" (http://blog.boatdipity.com/!/_
You will need some planning time if ownership is the goal. But don't discount this option if having the freedom to hook up the boat and head to a different lake each weekend. Dealerships have all the support staff needed to complete the purchase, delivery and local licensing required. Depending on the size of the boat you will find the process similar to buying a car. If you are buying a yacht, it's more like buying a house.
No matter which option you pick the weekend should be full of memories that can be shared with your friends Monday. Check out Boatdipity's social pages (https://www.facebook.com/