Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Getting Ready for Boating

Martha’s Vineyard Harbors and Waterways
The good news is that the harbors did not freeze this winter (2010), though many of the salt ponds did, but the better news is that the water is warming once again and soon it will be teaming with reawakened sea life, beach goers and boats. One sure sign that summer is very near is the appearance in our harbors of the nautical snowbirds. What are they you ask?! They are what we call those that take their boats to warmer waters in the Fall and then sail them back up to their home berths in New England coastal towns in the Spring, using the Vineyard as one of their landfalls on their journey North. We love to go down to the waterfront and listen to their stories of their seagoing adventure, some hair raising and others sure to elicit the envy of the listener.
If you are thinking of a boating excursion to the Island here is some information that may be of assistance
Edgartown - Reservations available usually beginning mid-March
Edgartown harbor is the busiest pleasure boat harbor on Martha's Vineyard. Its spaciousness, available services, and the easy accessibility of island attractions explain its popularity. Plan and secure your spot early

Moorings, Fuel & Dockage
Harbormaster - 1 Morse Street (508) 627.4746: Find information on our Harbor, the services and the free anchorage at
Edgartown Marine - located inside the harbor on your right before the Chappaquiddick ferry crossing. Provides boat supplies, ice, tackle shop and fuel. The Harbor Master, Edgartown Marine and Packard diesel all share the same location. (508) 627.4388.
Herring Creek Marine seasonal waterfront location with larger buildings off-site. (508) 627.7752
Mad Max Marina limited prime dockage available. 508 627.7400
Additional Marine Supplies & Repairs
Martha's Vineyard Shipyard has a summer location on Dock Street offering the basics. They can also send out a boat/mechanic or get you what you need within the day or next day. (508) 627.6000.
Oak Bluffs - Reservations Available usually beginning early February.Oak Bluffs harbor is smaller than Edgartown but unique and also very popular. Power boaters especially enjoy Oak Bluffs' numerous slips, with electricity & water provided, and their proximity to night life and dining. There are 85 slips that can accommodate over 150 boats on moorings, and they now offer launch service! Book harbor moorings early as they are in high demand.
Moorings & Dockage
· Harbormaster (508) 693.4355 Box 1327, Oak Bluffs, MA
· Dockside Marina & Marketplace provides dockage and fuel. (508) 693.3392.
Boat Supplies & Repairs
· Don's Marine Service. Shop is away from the harbor. (508) 693.0172.
· Martha's Vineyard Shipyard (in Vineyard Haven) 508-693-0400
Vineyard Haven - Space available on first come first served basisVineyard Haven is the Island's main port of entry and is home to the Shenandoah, a 108-foot square-topsail schooner and Alabama, a 90' Gaff Rigged Fore and Aft Schooner ( as well as many other fine wooden sailing vessels. The town, as well as private companies, offer moorings for visitor's enjoyment.
Moorings & Dockage
· Harbormaster 19 Owen Park Way - (508) 696.4249
· Owen Park with public restrooms and a children's swing abuts the Town Dock. Dockage is by the hour. Moorings are located in the outer harbor. A launch service is available.
· Coastwise Packet Dock, run by the Douglas's (owners of the Black Dog). The launch brings you to the dock where the restaurant is located on the harbor. Coastwise is located just left of the SSA Dock, which is dead center. (508) 693.3854.
· Vineyard Haven Marina is located at 52 Beach Road - in back of West Marine Express. This private marina can accommodate large yachts. (508) 693.9720.
· Tisbury Wharf Company is at 144 Beach Road, and immediately on your left upon entering the harbor. Fuel and ice are available. Tisbury Wharf can accommodate boats up to 200 feet. (508) 693.0720.
Boat Supplies & Repairs
· West Marine Express, 52 Beach Road, in front of Vineyard Haven Marina. If they don't have what you need in stock they will have is brought over from the larger Falmouth store ASAP. (508) 693.2906
· Gannon & Benjamin Boatyard, 30A Beach Road. They design and build new wooden boats, in addition to repairing just about anything. 508 693.4658.
· Martha's Vineyard Shipyard 164 Beach Rd. Boat supplies, mechanics, hauling services and storage provided, read full service shipyard. 508 693.0400.
Menemsha Harbor - Space available on first come first served basisThis is the quintessential New England harbor and mariners truly enjoy the compact nature of Menemsha Harbor. Also, dockage in Menemsha offers the advantage of ocean sunsets, a sandy beach and two Fish Markets a minute or two away.
Moorings & Dockage
· Harbormaster 508-645-2846 between June 1- September 30 or, 508-645-2100 ext. 2846 year-round.
· Menemsha is a small harbor, so call in advance. The tides run very strong into the harbor and along the beach approaching the entrance from the North.
Boat Supplies & Repairs
· Menemsha Marine Repair. Lynn Murphy specializes in diesel engines, but can help direct you to where/what you need. (508) 645.2883.
· The Martha's Vineyard Shipyard can send a boat or truck up from Vineyard Haven harbor (see above).
· Menemsha Texaco, fill up your boat and get snacks inside. (508) 645.2641.

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