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Archive For: NORTHERN GULF – All News

  • Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission: Safe Boating Saves Lives


    FWC: Safe boating saves lives
    Although Florida’s boating season never really ends, the traditional start is marked by National Safe Boating Week – a time for boaters to focus on simple and effective steps that make boating safer. Leading the nation with nearly 1 million registered vessels across the state, Florida is the boating capital of the world and is world-renowned as a prime boating spot for residents and visitors.

    CLICK HERE FOR MORE FROM THE FLORIDA FISH AND WILDLIFE COMMISSION

  • Billy Bowlegs Pirate Festival, June 1-4, Fort Walton Beach, GIWW


    A great, fun-filled weekend for the whole family! Fort Walton Beach Landing is west of the Brooks Fixed Bridge with a 50ft vertical clearance crossing the N Gulf Waterway at Mile 223.


    Citizens of Fort Walton Beach, visiting pirates and tourists beware!

    The dastardly Billy Bowlegs has been seen off t’shores of T’Emerald Coast and rumor is that he be plannin’ to dock his ship once t’again at The Fort Walton Beach Landing!

    Billy Bowlegs Pirate Festival

    Editor’s note: Click Here for Local Notice re June 2 Fesitival Waterway Regulations

  • LNM: GIWW Regulated Area, June 2, Statute Miles 219-221, Fort Walton Beach, FL


    This regulated area and Fort Walton Beach Landing are west of the Brooks Fixed Bridge with a 50ft vertical clearance crossing the N Gulf Waterway at Mile 223.

    FL – SANTA ROSA SOUND – FORT WALTON BEACH – Marine Event – Fireworks Display
    The Greater Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce will be conducting its annual Billy Bowlegs Festival in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. The COTP Mobile, under the Ports and Waterways Safety Act is issuing a Special Local Regulation for this marine event. READ MORE!

    The regulated area will be all portions of the GIWW, from mile 219.8, EHL to mile 221.8, EHL. The Special Local Regulation will take place on June 2, 2018, from 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. No vessel may enter the regulated area without prior approval of the Patrol Commander and when so directed will operate at a no wake speed in a manner which will not endanger participants in the event or any other craft. For up-to-date information, mariners can contact the U.S. Coast Guard Sector Mobile, at (251) 441-5976. Chart 11385 LNM 20/18

    Editor’s note: For more on the Billy Bowlegs Festival, go to Billy Bowlegs Pirate Festival

  • Get Hurricane Ready and Be Hurricane Strong, Leon County, FL

     
     

    CLICK HERE FOR MORE DISASTER PREPAREDNESS!

     
     
     

     

    Leon County Government - banner

    Get Hurricane Ready and Be Hurricane Strong

    Community Disaster Preparedness Event to be Held on June 2

     

    The Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1. Residents should begin preparing now. To help, the City of Tallahassee, Leon County Government and the Capital Area Chapter of the American Red Cross will host the fourth annual Build Your Bucket disaster preparedness expo on Saturday, June 2, from 9 a.m. to noon at the North Florida Fairgrounds441 Paul Russell Road. Gates will open at 8:30 a.m.

     

    This year’s Build Your Bucket will be a family-friendly expo with demonstrations, information and exhibits. The first 800 households will receive a free disaster preparedness bucket and critical starter supplies.

     

    There will be four bucket pick-up stations in Building 2 at the fairgrounds. After picking up a bucket, attendees will visit exhibitors at their own pace to collect supplies and learn about local resources for surviving and recovering from any disaster. More than 30 community response groups will be on hand to provide valuable information and supplies.

     

    Disaster events can be scary for children. To help them be prepared, Red Cross will offer special Pillowcase Project workshops during the expo in the meeting room of Building 2 at 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Using three steps – Learn, Practice and Share – children learn how to stay safe in an emergency. The Pillowcase Project is taught by trained Red Cross volunteers in a 45-minute session. Children who participate receive their own abbreviated preparedness toolkit, which includes a “My Preparedness Workbook.”

     

    Adding to the activities, a Touch-a-Truck area will be set up outside Building 2. Attendees can explore a variety of vehicles big and small from local response agencies, such as the Tallahassee Fire Department, Leon County Emergency Medical Services, Salvation Army and more. At Touch-a-Truck, families can interact with local first responders to learn about what they do during disasters and become familiar with the uniforms that could arrive to assist them when they need it most.

     

    Attendees should use the Monroe Street entrance to the fairgrounds. Parking is free and will be available on the northwest portion of the property. Handicap parking will be available adjacent to Building 2. Parking attendants will be on hand to help direct traffic.

     

    Expo details can be found at https://adobe.ly/2Ikfca5 or by checking out the event on Facebook. For more information about local preparedness and resources, visit the Leon County Emergency Information Portal atwww.LeonCountyFL.gov/EI and the City of Tallahassee Public Safety page at Talgov.com. During a disaster, information is also posted to both agencies’ Twitter accounts, @LeonCounty and @COTNews.

     

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  • LNM: Update on Repairs, DuPont Bridge, East Bay, GIWW 295.5


    With a fixed vertical clearance of 50ft, the DuPont Bridge crosses the Gulf Waterway at Mile 295.5.

    Fender damage repairs to the Southwest dolphin is scheduled between May 7, 2018 and May 18, 2018, during daylight hours only, 5-days a week, Monday through Friday, at the Dupont Bridge crossing the GIWW, mile 295.5, of St. Andrews Bay, Bay County, Florida. The main channel will not be blocked. A crane barge measuring 150 feet by 45 feet and excavator will be spud south and southwest of the dolphin. The barge will be properly lighted at night according to the “Inland Navigational Rules of 1980”. While onsite, the contractors will monitor VHF-FM Channel 16. In an emergency, mariners can contact (850) 960-4839. Mariners should be alert for equipment in the waterway at all times and pass exercising extreme caution at slowest safe speed to minimize wake. Chart 11389 LNM 39/17

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of DuPont Bridge

  • Pinta and Nina to Visit Panama City Marina, May 25-30, Panama City, FL, GIWW Statute Mile 290


    The Panama City Marina is located on the intercoastal Waterway one block from Downtown Panama City. The Panama City Marina is a newly renovated 240-slip marina facility designed for all classes of ves

    The Columbus Ships visit is hosted by longtime CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, Panama City Marina, located on the eastern shore of St. Andrews Bay.


    COLUMBUS SHIPS PINTA AND NINA TO LAND IN PANAMA CITY!

             Panama City, FL. —On Friday, May 25th, the ‘Pinta’ and the ‘Nina’, replicas of Columbus’ Ships, will open in Panama City.  The ships will be docked at Panama City Marina, 1 Harrison Avenue, until their departure early Wednesday morning, May 30th. READ MORE!

         The ‘Nina’ was built completely by hand and without the use of power tools.  Archaeology magazine called the ship “the most historically correct Columbus replica ever built.”  In 2005, the ‘Pinta’, also a caravel, was launched in Brazil and was the first ship to sight land in the New World.    Historians consider the caravel the Space Shuttle of the fifteenth century.

         Both ships tour together as a new and enhanced ‘sailing museum’ for the purpose of educating the public and school children on the ‘caravel’, a Portuguese ship used by Columbus   and many early explorers to discover the world. Before him, the Old World and the New remained separate and distinct continents and ever since their fates have been bound together for better or for worse.

         While in port, the general public is invited to visit the ships for a walk-aboard, self-guided tour.  Admission charges are $8.50 for adults, $7.50 for seniors, and$6.50 for students 5 – 16.   Children 4 and under are Free.  The ships are open every day from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.    No reservations necessary. 

         Teachers or organizations wishing to schedule a 30 minute guided tour with a crew member should call 1 787 672 2152 or email ninapintatour@gmail.com . Minimum of 15.  $5.00 per person.  No Maximum. Visit our website at www.ninapinta.org

    The ships arrive on Thursday, May 24th and there will be a private viewing of the ships for the media after docking. 

    COLUMBUS  FOUNDATION, INC., BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS, 787-672-2152

    EMAIL  NINAPINTATOUR@GMAIL.COM

    Visit our website: www.ninapinta.org       Friend us on Facebook: ColumbusShips      Twitter: @ColumbusShips

    Click Here To View the Northern Gulf Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Panama City Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Panama City Marina

  • LNM: Dredging Continues, GIWW Statute Mile 179-180, Santa Rosa Sound, Pensacola, FL


    This dredging operation is west of the Pensacola Beach Bridge, Pensacola, FL.

    FL – GIWW – SANTA ROSA SOUND – Dredge Operation
    Continuing until further notice, the Dredge KELLY L will be conducting dredging operations to remove shoaling in an area between GIWW, mile 179.0, EHL and GIWW, mile 180.0, EHL. Dredge material will be disposed into an upland disposal area located just south of the channel utilizing floating and submerged pipelines. All vessels will be lighted in accordance with U.S. Coast Guard Safety Regulations. The Dredge KELLY L will be monitoring VHF-FM Channel 13 or 16. Mariners are urged to exercise caution when transiting the area. Chart 11378 11383 LNM 18/18

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window Zoomed To the Location of Dredging

  • LNM: Dredging in Pensacola Bay, Apr 28-May 20, Pensacola, FL


    This dredging operation is west of the Pensacola Beach Bridge, Pensacola, FL.

    FL – GULF OF MEXICO – PENSACOLA BAY – Dredge Operation
    Commencing approximately April 28, 2018 and continuing until approximately May 20, 2018, the Hopper Dredge COLUMBIA will be conducting dredging operations in the vicinity of Pensacola Bay, FL. Work will be conducted 24-hours a day, 7-days a week. The Hopper Dredge COLUMBIA will be monitoring VHF-FM Channel 13, 16 or 69. Mariners are urged to exercise caution when transiting the area. Chart 11378 LNM 17/18

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Pensacola Bay

  • LNM: Look Out for Manatees When Boating


    Chances of close encounters between Florida manatees and boaters increase in the spring.

    For manatees, it is the season when they leave their winter refuges and travel along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts and through inland waters. For boaters, it is a critical time to be on the lookout for manatees to avoid colliding with these large aquatic mammals. READ MORE!

    “Spring is a great time to go boating in Florida, but manatees are out there too. Please watch out for them,” said Ron Mezich, who heads the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) manatee management program.

    From April 1 through Nov. 15, seasonal manatee zones require boaters to slow down in certain areas to prevent manatees from being struck by motorboats or personal watercrafts. FWC law enforcement officers are on patrol in state waters to remind boaters of the seasonal manatee speed zones and take enforcement actions when appropriate.

    Since manatees are difficult to detect when underwater, operators of boats and personal watercrafts can help by:

    Wearing polarized sunglasses to help spot manatees.
    Looking for large circles on the water, also known as manatee footprints, indicating the presence of a manatee below.
    Looking for a snout sticking up out of the water.
    Following posted manatee zones while boating.
    Reporting an injured, distressed, sick or dead manatee to the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-FWCC (3922) or dialing #FWC or *FWC on a cellphone.
    FWC biologists, managers and law enforcement staff work closely with partners to evaluate current data and identify necessary actions to protect this iconic animal. Florida has invested over $2 million annually for manatee conservation, and the FWC works toward continued success for manatees in our state.

    Manatee zones and maps are available at MyFWC.com/Manatee, where you can select “Protection Zones” for links to county maps. Boaters can get tips from “A boater’s guide to living with Florida Manatees.” And if you want to see manatees in the wild or captivity, go to “Where are Florida’s Manatees?”

    To support the FWC’s manatee research, rescue and management efforts, purchase a “Save the Manatee” Florida license plate at BuyaPlate.com, or donate $5 to receive an FWC manatee decal by going to MyFWC.com/Manatee and clicking on “Decals.”

  • Derelict Vessel Removal Grant Money Available in Florida


    In FWC’s first application period for derelict vessel removal grants, $488, 550.00 was available and only $184,935.00 was requested. This leaves $303,615.00 still available for derelict vessel removal grants. Therefore this 2nd opportunity announcement is being advertised. READ MORE!

    The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is announcing the opportunity to apply for Derelict Vessel Removal Grants. The application period for the Bulk Derelict Vessel Removal Grant Program will begin on Monday March 26, 2018 at 8:00 AM (EST), and end on Wednesday May 9, 2018 at 5:00 PM (EST). Applications received after Wednesday May 9, 2018, will not be eligible for consideration. All removal applications must demonstrate proof that due process was provided for each vessel’s owner. At a minimum, this would include an opportunity for the vessel owner to challenge the derelict vessel determination, either in criminal court or in an administrative hearing. Vessel cases not demonstrating that these opportunities have been offered to the owners of the vessels will not be considered for state funding assistance. The grant guidelines and application form may be downloaded at: http://www.MyFWC.com/DVGrant.

    You may also receive the guidelines and application by contacting Phil Horning at (850) 617-9540 or email DVGrant@MyFWC.com.

    Applications that meet the requirements for the Rapid Removal Grant Program may be submitted at any time after the opportunity announcement start date, but no later than November 31, 2018 at 5:00pm (EST) (based on available funding). Rapid removal cases must also meet due process requirements. Total funding allocated for derelict vessel removal for fiscal year 2017/18 is $488,550. Applications may be mailed to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Boating and Waterways Section, Derelict Vessel Grant Program Administrator, at 620 S. Meridian Street – Room 235, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600 or emailed to DVGrant@MyFWC.com.

    For further information, please contact:

    Phil Horning, Derelict Vessel Program Administrator, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Division of Law Enforcement, Boating and Waterways Section, (850) 617-9540 or email Phil.Horning@MyFWC.com

  • LNM: Apalachicola, Chattahoochee and Flint River Channel Depths

    This good news for all of you wanting to explore the inland rivers of the Northern Gulf.

    FL – APALACHICOLA-CHATTAHOOCHEE-FLINT RIVER BASIN – Channel Conditions
    Continuing through May, 2018, a 7-foot navigation channel will be supported on the Apalachicola, Chattahoochee and Flint River System (ACF), according to the ACF Water Control Manual dated March 2017,when the composite storage for the systems in Zones 1 and 2. The critical Blountstown gage needed to support navigation is a 7.4-foot gage reading. Mariners anticipating using the system are encouraged to monitor the flow and water levels at the following website: http://water.sam.usace.army.mil/ .
    The current water level on the ACF is sufficient to support navigation, however dryer conditions are forecast in the near future. Further, while Jim Woodruff Lock is operational by appointment only, the George W. Andrews and Walter F George locks are closed due to mechanical failures. To schedule lockage mariners can contact (229) 723-3482. Anyone anticipating a barge shipment on the system is encouraged to contact Carl Dyess, at (251) 690-2570.
    Chart 11401 LNM 09/18

  • Over 6000 Manatees Counted in Florida

    Be on the lookout for manatees! 2017 was the third highest mortality rate for manatees and tied with the all-time record for watercraft deaths.

    More Than 6000 Manatees Counted In Florida
    The survey serves as a loose population count. It’s conducted during Florida’s coldest days as manatees gather for warmth near deep canals, natural springs and power plants.

    READ MORE from Amy Green, WUSF News

  • Good Words for Panama City Marina, Panama City, FL, GICW Statute Mile 290


    The Panama City Marina is located on the intercoastal Waterway one block from Downtown Panama City. The Panama City Marina is a newly renovated 240-slip marina facility designed for all classes of ves

    Our thanks to AGCLA member, Terry Godhold, for these words of praise for longtime CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, Panama City Marina, located on the eastern shore of St. Andrews Bay.

    I rarely, if ever, recommend a marina however, this is different. Yesterday, on the way to Panama City, I blew a oil hose. We had to call Sea Tow to tow us 17 miles where we successfully secured the Magic. The marina was given a “heads up” that we were being towed in. Rick, the harbor master, met us, helped us tie, gave us mechanics recommendation and all in all, was more helpful than almost any other marina we have visited.
    Terry Godbold

    Click Here To View the Northern Gulf Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Panama City Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Panama City Marina

  • FWC: Derelict Vessel Removal Grants Available


    The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is announcing the opportunity to apply for Derelict Vessel Removal Grants. The application period for the Bulk Derelict Vessel Removal Grant Program will begin on January 8, 2018 at 8:00 AM (EST), and end on February 21, 2018 at 5:00 PM (EST).
    READ MORE!

    Applications received after February 21, 2018, will not be eligible for consideration in round one, but may be considered for a potential subsequent round, if funding remains available. All removal applications must demonstrate proof that due process was provided for each vessel’s owner. At a minimum, this would include an opportunity for the vessel owner to challenge the derelict vessel determination, either in criminal court or in an administrative hearing. Vessel cases not demonstrating that these opportunities have been offered to the owners of the vessels will not be considered for state funding assistance. Should funding be available for a second or subsequent rounds of applications, new announcements will be made. The grant guidelines and application form may be downloaded at: http://www.MyFWC.com/DVGrant.

    You may also receive the guidelines and application by contacting Phil Horning at (850) 617-9540 or email DVGrant@MyFWC.com.

    Applications that meet the requirements for the Rapid Removal Grant Program may be submitted at any time after the opportunity announcement start date, but no later than November 31, 2018 at 5:00pm (EST) (based on available funding). Rapid removal cases must also meet due process requirements. Total funding allocated for derelict vessel removal for fiscal year 2017/18 is $488,550. Applications may be mailed to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Boating and Waterways Section, Derelict Vessel Grant Program Administrator, at 620 S. Meridian Street – Room 235, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1600 or emailed to DVGrant@MyFWC.com.

    For further information, please contact:

    Phil Horning, Derelict Vessel Program Administrator, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Division of Law Enforcement, Boating and Waterways Section, (850) 617-9540 or email Phil.Horning@MyFWC.com

  • Florida Manatee Migration Underway: Keep a Sharp Lookout!


    Florida manatees on the move, public stewardship on the water makes a difference.

    People who remember in November to watch out for manatees as they begin migrating to warmer waters are making a difference in the species’ survival. READ MORE!

    Florida is home to more than 6,600 manatees. With the arrival of Manatee Awareness Month, people again are slowing down and looking out for these large aquatic mammals in waterways throughout the state.

    Many seasonal manatee protection zones go into effect Nov. 15. Though some signs identifying manatee zones may have been damaged by Hurricane Irma, information on manatee zone locations is also available online. If you see damaged waterway signs, report them at MyFWC.com/Boating by clicking on “Waterway Management,” “Waterway Markers” and then “Damaged/Missing Waterway Markers.”

    Earlier this year, the Florida manatee was reclassified from endangered to a threatened status, under the federal Endangered Species Act, in a decision announced by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. While this is a notable step, there is still work to be done to ensure continued progress toward recovery of our official state marine mammal.

    “People’s efforts to help Florida manatees are working. Let’s celebrate the fact that conservation actions are making a difference and manatees are no longer endangered by thanking all the individuals and organizations that contributed to this milestone,” said Carol Knox, who leads the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) Imperiled Species Management Section.

    “It’s important though to remain vigilant,” Knox said. “Let’s keep up the efforts that are helping with manatee recovery.”

    How can people keep making a difference for manatees?
    Watch for these large aquatic mammals as they search for warmer waters to help them survive winter’s cold, which they generally find in freshwater springs and the outflow of power plants.
    Wear polarized sunglasses to spot them moving, grazing and resting in the water. Keep a lookout for the circular “footprints” they leave on the surface of the water.
    Slow down when boating and follow posted manatee zones.
    Observe manatees from a distance to limit disturbance.
    Report injured, entangled, orphaned or dead manatees to the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline: 888-404-FWCC (3922), #FWC or *FWC on your cellphone or text Tip@MyFWC.com.
    Continue to support the manatee decal and license plate, and tell everyone how the decal and license plate support the FWC’s manatee conservation efforts.
    Want to see a manatee? Go to MyFWC.com/Manatee and click on the link in the “Where Can I See Manatees?” box.

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