By tomorrow evening, Kentucky-based Stephen Miles Design will go on hiatus for the immediate future. The famed Owensboro high-performance powerboat graphics shop had been exempt from the state’s first round of COVID-19 pandemic restictions in which all retail businesses and restaurant dining rooms were ordered to close. But late yesterday afternoon, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear ordered all “non-life-sustaining businesses” to shut their doors by Thursday night. So Miles and his crew members, who had been working on multiple projects, will have some time away from the paint booth.
At present, Miles has five boats in various stages of progress at his Owensboro headquarters. Projects range from touch-up and refreshment work on Habitual, a 44-foot Mystic Powerboats catamaran he originally painted for Tennessee’s Chad and Heather Collier that is going to a new owner in Texas, and from-scratch paintjobs for Nor-Tech 450 and 390 center consoles, an Outerlimits SL 52 and a Sunsation 40 CCX.
Reached by phone yesterday, Miles immediately said he is keenly aware of his good fortune and grateful for his customers from individual clients to boat companies. And he thanked them for their support.
“From day one, I’ve been very grateful and blessed that I get to do this for a living,” he said “At this very moment, I don’t think I’ve ever been filled with more gratitude. Now I’m hearing of boat builders shutting down. That means some of the people who spend all year keeping the wheels on this thing are now without work. That is absolutely heartbreaking.
“But we will get through it,” he added. “Be safe.”