For the past few years Fort Myers Offshore president Tim Hill and the nonprofit powerboat club’s board members have been dealing with the challenges that come with expanding membership and increasing participation in FMO events, especially when it comes to securing dockage for large groups. Their most recent hurdle involved the upcoming Holiday Fun Run on January 2, the outfit’s fourth event of the 2021/2022 season and its second designated fundraiser.
The initial plan was to enjoy lunch at CJ’s On The Bay on Marco Island. But while the restaurant could handle feeding for more than 300 people, the docks required to accommodate what Hill predicts could be a 100-boat turnout could not. Thanks to a host of unavoidable issues, the dockmaster informed Hill that he could guarantee just 25 slips.
“That left me scrambling for a place that could accommodate the size of our group on a holiday weekend,” said Hill. “We had 83 boats last year.”
The solution involves a combination of venues in Fishermen’s Village on Punta Gorda.
“The owner of Village Brewhouse, our Thanksgiving run location, stepped up to the plate to close the restaurant and give us all of his tables,” said Hill. “The only problem was that we feared the facility would not be enough so he is partnering with neighboring Turtle Bay restaurant to accommodate us as well.
“Village Brewhouse will cater the entire event at both locations which are next door to each other right on the docks,” he continued. “While it’s a bit unfortunate that this is the same location we just visited in November it is a favorite for all of our members. The food is outstanding and we have the option of running protected waters all the way there.”
Fort Myers Offshore president Tim Hill and the club’s board of directors are expecting a record setting for the 2022 holiday run.