2017-03-24 – Marathon – Palm Beach–Stuart FL

Our friends Ted & Sally (Amici) were still in Marathon so a visit back was definitely in order. In addition we had the unexpected bonus of meeting up with Pat & Becky (Taurus).


Seven Mile Bridge is one of the few places along the length of the Florida Keys that we can cut through without going all the west past the Dry Tortugas



In addition the stop allowed us to stop and see some of our favorite musicians, Ty & Cory.


We also stopped into the Seafood Festival where Annette got to catch up with Carolyn and Dave (Boat Galley).


Departing out of Marathon we great winds off the starboard quarter and drove us up the Hawk Channel towards Rodriquez Key


Pat & Becky (Taurus) underway


Magnolia underway (Thank you Pat & Becky)


Anneette & Becky aboard Magnolia


Departing Rodriquez Key Pat & Becky were headed to Miami but with a weather front about 18 hours away we really wanted to make Palm Beach/Lakeworth. We decided to head offshore and catch a real lift from the Gulf Stream…meaning an extra 3-4 knots per hour!


Perhaps a little background. As I was dropping the sail on the Marathon to Rodriquez Key leg I thought I saw a small tear in the sail. When we got anchored  I raised the sail back up to find the spot and put some stitches in it to get us up the coast. I could not find the tear anywhere…perhaps I imagined? Oh well little I could do. We knew we would arrive after dark into Palm Beach but were confident we could navigate the inlet in the dark. The one thing we had not previously done was set the anchor after a passage like this in the dark. We like to push ourselves a little and the conditions were safe…so just as we are approaching the inlet and think it time to drop the main sail…we hear the worlds largest Velcro strip separate. I looked at Annette and said I think we found the tear. We brought the sail down and anchored as planned[.


We know the sail is at least 10 years and maybe 26 years old!!! It was time no matter..after a nights sleep we raised the main and could see the sail did not tear but a seam did let go. Thats why I could not find it…when I raised the sail it stretched out and closed at the seam…oh well.



Why we were in Lake Worth we wanted to meet up with fellow Pentagon Sailing Club Members Bruce & Rhonda (The Norm) who are the only other couple from the club cruising full time. It was a brief but fun visit!!!


We moved the 9 miles up to North Lake Worth to visit our friend Mims. She recently relocated from Charleston to Palm Beach so had to stop and see her new diggs!


Mims and the ever handsome Tommy.


This Snapper and I had a real face-off, he lost though when I ate him…he was good.


Going back to the sail…it happens one of the largest sail lofts on the east coast is in Stuart, FL. A mere 20 miles up the ICW. We made arrangements to have our current sail repaired and commissioned a new sail constructed which will be shipped to meet us in Maryland in about 8 weeks. As you can see we had to move around a little to have the sail removed and then bent back on. All in all a painless experience.


Now the completely unexpected portion of the trip was meeting up once again with Al Watson (Kindred Spirit). Al is helping a friend Colin bring Colin’s boat from Stuart to Savannah. So we will have a couple days on the ICW with and Al and Colin (Tortuga)!


2017-03-04–Sarasota–Port Charlotte—Fort Meyer

Once again I am playing catch up but that is only because we have been enjoying ourselves so very much on the west coast of Florida.


Annette and I really enjoyed Sarasota. We had a terrific visit to the Ringling Circus Museum (https://www.ringling.org/circus-museum) and the  Ringling Art Museum (https://www.ringling.org/museum-art).  In a addition we were lucky enough to have several visitors. Pentagon Sailing Club Members Wesley & Brenda Moy along with Will and Barbara Kelchner (pictured below).


MaryMarie of Eleanor Q passed through town on a visit to her sisters so we got so spend a few hours aboard Magnolia catching up. We look forward to sharing an anchorage with Eleanor Q sooner than later!


It was time to get underway and head down to Port Charlotte where we planned to visit Will & Barbara on their home waters of Port Charlotte.


Upon our arrival Barb and Will invited us to their boat clubs monthly Friday Happy Hour. Having a nearly religious belief in Happy Hour we certainly did not want to miss that! We were anchored on the Port Charlotte side of the harbor and the Boat Club was on the Punta Gorda side and Blossom carried us the two miles across the bay.


Punta Gorda Boat Club Members lay out a spread!!



The following day Blossom took us over to the Red Ruby Inn to visit Barb & Will. Annette enjoyed the spa facilities!


After spending a wonderful weekend with Barbara and Will it was time to get underway. We found this quiet little island in the middle of no-where called Chino Island. Because of weather we planned to spend a couple days.


So here we are in the middle of no where and who shows up along side but MaryMarie with some of her friends. What a treat to know we can be found…or stalked as the case may be. Smile


Departing Chino Island we made the short hop up to Glover Bite near Cape Coral.


The big reason we wanted to visit Fort Meyers/Cape Coral was the Edison/Ford winter mansions.  A statue of Edison under his single Banyon Tree (yes its a single tree) which he used for his research into rubber alternatives.



Of course the Admiral found the pool nearly first thing!


The Edison Home.





Henry Fords home is right next door to Edison home.  As was related to us Ford only spent a couple weeks a year in Fort Meyers. We planned his visits around Edison Birthday.





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Annette in front of Ford’s home.


Edison’s home from the street side of the compound.


A little aside to life aboard Magnolia. It was time to make a trip to the grocery store. A little research told us the we take Blossom up a residential canal (those are ALL canal homes on the map). There is a public access dock at the Bimini Basin. From there the local Publix is about about 8 bck walk west. Yes, this life choice takes some effort. It is not all Tiki Hut lunches with Umbrella Drinks….


…or is it? Our friends on Cat Tails arrived in the area yesterday and with strong weather arriving tonight we met at the Boathouse Restaurant this afternoon.


for Cuban Sandwiches and umbrella drinks! Ok, some days…but not everyday!


We are hoping the current weather will move out next week and allow us to start out on the first leg of our journey back to the mid-Atlantic. The first leg will take us from Fort Meyers to back to Marathon in the Florida Keys before another short hop to Palm Beach/Lake Worth.


That’s all from the crew of Magnolia, be safe and more soon!