In Brief: WaterTop Unlimited, Petit, Sport Fishing & Boating Partnership Council, IYRS, TowBoatU.S., MIASF, ISP, Thermoboat

WaterTop Unlimited will be producing two PWC owner events in Florida this spring. The event production company will produce the Indian River PWC Easter Egg Hunt in Melbourne, Fla., on March 28 and the Skyway PWC Poker Run in St. Petersburg, Fla., on April 11. WaterTop is joining forces with Route 1 Motorsports in Grant, Fla., and Barney’s Motorcycle and Marine in St. Petersburg, Fla., to produce the two PWC owner events.

Pettit Marine Paint is offering a new rebate program. Between March 1 and May 31, Pettit is offering rebates up to $20 per gallon on select Pettit antifouling paint. This initiative follows its 2009 stimulus rebate program, which saved American boat owners over $300,000. With soaring raw materials prices, Pettit has found ways to reduce manufacturing costs without cutting back on biocide levels in its bottom paint. For information and their share of Pettit’s recovery package, boaters can visit Requests must be postmarked by June 15. Limit two rebates per household or individual.

Ned Dikmen, Ph.D, publisher of Great Lakes Boating magazine and chairman of the Great Lakes Boating Federation, was recently appointed to the Sport Fishing & Boating Partnership Council (SFBPC), by Ken Salazar, U.S. Secretary of the Department of the Interior. The SFBPC is responsible for conserving, restoring, and enhancing the quality, function, sustainable productivity, and distribution of aquatic resources that support and increase recreational fishing opportunities nationwide. It also serves to increase public awareness of the importance of aquatic resources and the social and economic benefits of recreational fishing and boating. Dikmen will be a member of the council until 2012.

On Mon., March 15, U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) will join the staffs of the International Yacht Restoration School and the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation to announce new federal funding he secured to help establish the IYRS Composites Technology program, a job training program. Reed, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, secured half a million dollars in the fiscal year 2010 appropriations spending bill to help establish this program, which will train skilled technicians and innovators for industries that are central to Rhode Island’s economic development — including marine, wind energy, and construction, according to IYRS. The IYRS Composites Technology Program will be offered at the school’s teaching facility in Bristol, R.I., beginning in September 2010. The nine-month program is the first of its kind, due to its length, in-depth curriculum, and emphasis on teaching both hands-on practical skills and the theory behind this widely used technology, according to the school.

At the BoatU.S. Towing Services Annual Conference recently held in Arlington, Va., Tower of the Year honors went to TowBoatU.S. Lake Ozark, which is owned and operated by Capt. Charlie Meyer. Capt. Meyer’s locally-owned company has three locations on the waterway at Lake Ozark, Osage Beach and Linn Creek and is part of a nationwide network of over 290 ports and fleet of 600 TowBoatU.S. and Vessel Assist towing assistance vessels. The company was honored for its near perfect towing dispatch operation, superior customer satisfaction, towing case management, and best safety record for a towing business. TowBoatU.S. Lake Ozark provides on-the-water assistance and towing service to hundreds of boaters each year in nearly every kind of weather condition, and has been in the TowBoatU.S. fleet since 2004.

The Marine Industries Association of South Florida, organizers and sponsors of the 33rd Annual Waterway Cleanup, has reported that on Sat., March 6 over 1,800 volunteers came by land and in 117 boats to 25 sites to participate in the event, presented by the Florida Inland Navigation District, successfully removing 15 tons of trash from Broward’s waterways, rivers and canals. During the event, Vice Mayor Gunzburger presented the inaugural Year-Round Environmental Stewardship Award to Arnaldo “Arnie” Correia for his dedication to maintaining the health of the region’s waterways and community throughout the year. Also at the press conference, Commissioner Tyler Chappell of the Florida Inland Navigation District made a special presentation of FIND’s $10,000 Presenting Sponsorship of the Waterway Cleanup to MIASF’s Executive Director Frank Herhold. Gordon Connell presented Dockmaster Del Dickerhoof and Site Coordinator and LSBC Member Diane Hodges with the club’s 30 year anniversary MIASF Membership award and thanked them for their long term support for the event. Specially designed commemorative Merit Badges will be awarded to over 150 Girl Scouts that participated in this year’s event. To promote awareness of our South Florida marine environment, writing contests on Waterway Cleanup and marine habitat conservation were conducted at two of MIASF’s marine magnet partner schools. Chelsea Currie, a 10th grader at South Broward High School won the annual essay contest. She will receive a $500 scholarship check and have her essay printed in the MIASF Newsletter Tide-ings. New River Middle School 7th grader Janelle Lewis won the annual short story contest and will receive a $250 savings bond.

International Safety Products Ltd. (ISP) has become the first British lifejacket manufacturer to win US Coastguard approval for one of its products, it reported in a recent statement. The manufacturing processes at the company’s factory on Merseyside, U.K., enable customers to specify their own colors, trim, features and corporate branding of the chosen style of a fully-approved ISP lifejacket. This makes it possible for a wide variety of organizations or marine equipment suppliers to add a profitable line of lifejackets to their product range, the company suggested. USCG approval now makes this capability available for companies in, or supplying, the United States. The USCG certificate of approval has been granted for ISP’s Shannon lifejacket, a general purpose leisure lifejacket that provides 150 N of buoyancy and features ISP’s patented Wave Barrier interlocking lobe design. When the lifejacket is inflated, its asymetrical design eliminates the space that is created between the lobes on traditional lifejackets, according to the company.

Thermoboat, Ltd. of Sidney, B.C., Canada has been chosen as the North American importer of StressFree Anchor Winches. Made in Australia, StressFree Anchor Winches offer anchor rode handling products for vessels from 16’ to 38’, plus custom sizes for larger boats, and are suited for power and sailboat applications. Thermoboat will be responsible for OEM and distribution sales throughout Canada and the United States.

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