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    • A Word From the New Director of Marker One Marina (Western Florida ICW, Statute Mile 142)

       Captain Steve Arndt, author of the message below, and the new dockmaster at Marker One Marina, gained a superb reputation for his welcoming, can-do attitude towards all cruisers during his former directorship at Bay Point Marina in Panama City, Florida. With Captain Steve at the helm, we feel strongly that things will look up very quickly at Marker One.

      Now you’ll be able to enjoy that same level of friendliness and service at a new location a few miles farther south! Marker 1 Marina, (http://www.marker1marina.com – my new home in Dunedin, FL) is located on the [Western Florida] ICW just north of Clearwater and is a wonderful stop along the Loop. With grocery stores, restaurants, banks and thrift stores just a few blocks away, you’ll find just about everything you need close by. Caladesi Island State Park (recently named the Best Beach in America) is just a short kayak or dingy ride away. Meanwhile the town of Dunedin is proud of their Scottish roots and has a diverse selection of bars, restaurants and shops that just beg to be explored. And with 300 feet of lay along transient dock, private showers and 24 hour security, your boat will feel right at home, too.
      I look forward to sharing my new hometown with many of you in the coming years!
      Thanks,
      Steve Arndt
      Director, Marker 1 Marina

      Click Here To View the Westerb Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Marker One Marina

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Marker One Marina

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    • Report from Caledesi Island State Park Marina (north of Dunedin)

      Caladesi Island Marina - Click for Chartview

      As I recall, the entrance channel leading to Caladesi Island State Park Marina (from Hurricane Pass) can be a bit of a challenge for first timers, but otherwise, this is a pretty good facility for those who just want to get away from the maddening crowd. It lies just north of the Dunedin and the Honeymoon Island Bridge

      Caladesi is located immediately north of Clearwater Beach. The beach is still great for shellers, especially near the northern end. Dockage is $1/ft at a slip, $2/ft on a t-dock; 30 amp elec. and water included. 24/7 bathrooms on shore, and a snack bar. Florida senior citizens (65+) pay half. Limit is 14 days, but you can contact them and offer to be a volunteer: free dockage in exchange for 20 hr/wk easy labor. For example we met someone who’s job was to pick up any trash (rare) on the beach. She would carry two bags; one for trash, one for shells.
      There are signs that say “watch out for rattlesnakes” but we haven’t seen any. We have seen lots of armadillos, some raccoons, numerous types of birds, gopher tortoises, and very few people.
      The channel is shallow in places, but marked and doable for our 4’6″ draft. A great place to visit. Chosen twice by “Dr. Beach” as the best beach in the country.
      Wade Ehlen
      MT 36 Shady Lady
      New Bern NC

      Wade is spot on about Caladesi Island. It was one of our favorite weekend spots since it was so close to home yet so far away. The beach is absolutely beautiful.
      But Wade, the rattlesnakes are there, although they tend to be in the wooded areas. There used to be a skin mounted on the wall in the rangers office that must be 6′ long. We have seen them that big in the winter, warming themselves in
      a sunny spot on the nature trails.
      Regards,
      Randy Pickelmann
      Morning Star

      When we were in Caladesi last year we caught a line in the prop while in the marina so my husband hopped over to free it. About five minutes after he was back on board a rattlesnake swam by on its way over to the mangroves. We were glad we hadn’t seen it before freeing the line because we might have left the line in the prop rather than risk swimming with the snake. The next day, we also watched as a ranger chased one off the park’s work boat. Still, if you leave them alone, they’ll leave you alone. And Caladesi is so beautiful its worth the stop, even with the snakes!
      Paige Caldwell

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Caladesi Island State Park Marina

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    • Praise for Tarpon Springs and Turtle Cove Marina, off the Anclote River, Gulf Coast

      Turtle Cove Marina - Click for Chartview

      Turtle Cove Marina is located off the Anclote River in Tarpon Springs channel, west of Marker #50. Detailed channel instructions are found in our Western Florida Marina Directory listing for this facility, linked below.

      Tarpon Springs is one of our favorite stops on the Loop, lots of great food, music, marina life, fresh sea food and a good place to rest up after a long crossing. Last year we stayed at Turtle Cove Marina for a week (good weekly rate) and found it to be close to everything. To read more and see photo’s of Tarpon Springs, the farmers market and more you can click on the following link: http://trailertrawlerlife.com/?s=tarpon+springs&x=0&y=0
      Opa,
      Jim & Lisa Favors

      Fish Market

      Sponge Docks

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Turtle Cove Marina

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Tarpon Springs and Spring Bayou

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    • Report from Power Plant Anchorage on Anclote River, Western Florida


      Power Plant Anchorage - Click for Chartview

      The Power Plant Anchorage lies on the eastern shore of the Anclote River hard by this stream’s mouth and north of marker #18.

      We have anchored just inside the Anclote River heading towards Tarpon Springs. There is a public boat ramp there on the port side going in and the waterway is blocked off just past the ramp, but plenty of room. It is well protected from east winds.
      Chuck

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Power Plant Anchorage

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Power Plant Anchorage

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    • Praise for Dunedin Municipal Marina (Western Florida ICW, Statute Mile 139)

       We have always enjoyed a stay at Dunedin Municipal Marina. This facility is backed by a beautiful green park, which often hosts local shows and fairs, and one block farther on you will discover the downtown shopping district. Here, don’t dare miss Dining at Kelly’s Bistro. Yummmmmm!

      Dunedin Municipal Marina is convenient to restaurants & shopping, just a 2 block walk to the main downtown area. We liked it so much here we moved from Illinois to Dunedin while on the loop earlier this year.
      From Anclote Key follow the ICW south to G”7″, from Clearwater Inlet follow the ICW north to G”5″.
      Ron & Jan Matuska

      I agree Dunedin is really a nice town and they have a very good Mexican restaurant not far from the marina!
      Jim and Dale McGovern
      Aboard SweetPea

      The Dunedin Municipal Marina is excellent. Great staff and facilities at a good rate.
      Sea Potts

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Dunedin Municipal Marina

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Dunedin Municipal Marina

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    • Good Words for Turtle Cove Marina – Tarpon Springs, off the Anclote River

      Turtle Cove Marina - Click for Chartview

      Turtle Cove Marina is located off the Anclote River in Tarpon Springs channel, west of Marker #50. Detailed channel instructions are found in our Western Florida Marina Directory listing for this facility, linked below.

      We stayed at Turtle Cove after a rough night at Anclote Key (the winds were from the East). Having previously stayed at the City Docks with it’s strong current, I was pleased to find this sheltered marina with floating docks. The staff was very accommodating and the facilities were clean, the pool was great. Too many good restaurants to name within walking distance, but try Mama’s ‘“ you won’t be disappointed. I will definitely return to Turtle Cove.
      Cambren Davis

      I can only endorse Cambren’s remarks about Turtle Cove Marina.
      Our sailing club, Hudson Beach Yacht Club, has sponsored several weekend cruises to this marina. I took a `women-only’ crew there in June. We have always received the best service and enjoyed the Tiki Hut, pool, and bar. The shower facilities are exceptionally clean!
      One tip: Try Rusty Bellies restaurant, just a 5 minute walk from the marina, for their good food and fun entertainment.
      Karin Glessner
      s/v Callystos

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Turtle Cove Marina

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Tarpon Springs and Spring Bayou

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    • Report from Three Rooker Bar Anchorage, Gulf ICW Statute Mile 147

      This West Florida anchorage lies near the northern tip of the Western Florida ICW, and just south of Anclote Key, Anclote River and Tarpon Springs.

      We have anchored here several times. As long as the winds are from the west, it really is not that bad of a place if you are looking for some seclusion and a great place to hang out for the day (or tender in to the islands). It should be noted, that there is A LOT of sea grass in the area, so be careful.
      Roger Battistoni

      On weekends very popular, great place.
      Edward Turner

      Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Anchorage Directory Listing For Three Rooker Bar

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Three Rooker Bar

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    • Report from Hurricane Pass, Gulf Coast, North of Clearwater, FL

      Hurricane Pass, which intersects the Western Florida ICW between Dunedin and Anclote Key, was formed by a violent hurricane in 1921 resulting in a seaward cut dividing what is now called Honeymoon Island to the north and Caladesi Island to the south. Depths in this cut run 4 feet or less and, as Captain Battistoni reports, the channel shifts constantly. Our advice: avoid this inlet like the plague.

      Cruising News:
      Not sure if this is where I report this, however we have a 43 foot Sea Ray Motor Yacht. I went through the hurricane pass which is a inlet to the ICW just north of clearwater. If you follow the markers you will run aground even during high tide as the markers have you going right through a large sandy landmass that is extending from the north. This was even during high tide. You have to go well south of the markers, and even when you do that we registered only .5 foot under the keel (and this was at high tide).
      Roger Battistoni

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Hurricane Pass

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    • Port Tarpon Marina Goes Above and Beyond (on the Anclote River Just Downstream of Tarpon Springs)

      Port Tarpon Marina is the largest of several facilities gathered along Anclote River’s northern banks near marker #40. Recommendations like the one from Captains Bob and Ann below are perhaps the very best indication of a quality operation!!!

      While on our trek home from Florida to Nashville, TN my wife came down with a very bad case of vertigo. What to do? We decided that we would have to cut short our journey but where? We ended up staying at Port Tarpon Marina.
      The management of that marina went above and beyond what we could have asked them to do. Not only did they make sure that we had transportation to and from town but also the doctor and the pharmacies. The beauty of this marina is not only the management but it is the first marina on the port side as you approach Tarpon Springs, the water is over 9 feet at the dock, so there is no worry about running aground. The marina was clean, etc. I can not say enough good things about Port Tarpon and the crew.
      After talking with them they are now members of the AGLCA so if you are going to stop at Tarpon Springs, please stop at Port Tarpon Marina.
      Bob and Ann Levine
      Sandpiper 44 Endeavour Cat

      Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Marina Directory Listing For Port Tarpon Marina

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Port Tarpon Marina

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    • Turtle Cove Marina – Tarpon Springs (Anclote River)

      Now, here’s a new one on us. A check for chart 11411 seems to indicate that the marina spoken of so glowingly below, is located on Spring Bayou, which runs off the southern shores of Anclote River, just west of downtown Tarpon Springs. For many years, this was a shallow body of water, and that is why our on-the-water research never led us to this facility.
      That will soon be changed, however, as I will be on the scene here during the first part of February, 2012, and you can bet a visit to Turtle Cove Marina will be on the top of my list. In the meantime, if anyone who has visited here has MLW depth info, PLEASE click the “the “Comment on This Posting/Marina/Anchorage/Bridge” link below, and share your information.

      We are presently at the best marina we have encountered so far and that is saying something. Many friends had warned us about the perils of getting into the city dock and the poor facilities and then I saw a chance posting about a looper who had stumbled onto Turtle Cove Marina. I looked at it on Google Earth and said why not. You ease up the Anclote River to Red 50 and turn right just past the marker. Next take the first left and be sure to hug the boats on the port side through the turn as there is a shallow spot. You will dead end at Turtle Cove which has an artificial island in a cove with slips all around . Floating docks, great electrical. I have never seen better pedestals in a marina. It all looks brand new. Secure facility with locked gates. You get a key. They have a clubhouse and pool too. Gas at pumps and diesel with one day notice delivered direct to your boat by a truck that drives on the island and backs up to your slip. Ed is the owner and Peter is the dockmaster. The marina is one short block behind the town. No current, no wind, no problem. $1.50 per foot for loopers and BoatUS. Pumpouts at every slip. Can you believe this? And it is all a hidden treasure. You can call them at 727-934-2202. If you want to see it on Google Earth it is at 827 Roosevelt Blvd. I give it an A+.
      Rusty and Jan Carlisle

      I’ve always been a great fan of the [Tarpon Springs] municipal marina because it’s so close to the main drag on the island. However Turtle Cove sounds almost too good to be true. I know “the Judge” wouldn’t lie to us. After three times at the municipal dock, with its problems just to be close to “Hellas Greek Resturant” its Turtle Cove next time!!!
      Thanks Judge!
      Dave

      Lisa and I are docked (for a week) at Turtle Cove Marina in Tarpon Springs Florida. Based on prior posts on this forum, I thought I’d add our two cents worth as it relates to our positive opinion. Turtle Cove is the place to be in Tarpon Springs if you like these amenities:
      1. New floating docks
      2. Free washer and dryer
      3. Easy walk to sponge docks, restaurants and downtown
      4. $1.50 per foot or discounted weekly stay (we’re paying .75 per foot for
      a week)
      5. Hot tub & swimming pool
      6. Free pumps outs
      7. Marina will also make arrangements for a fuel truck to come to your boat
      8. Free truck and trailer storage (we have a trailerable Ranger Tug)
      Jim & Lisa Favors
      Ranger Tug R27 ‘“ Kismet

      This is indeed a nice spot with wonderful amenities as described in the post below. Ed Spaeth the GM / owner is a very welcoming individual. It was a real treat to be met & welcomed by Ed & his team after our long crossing from Carrabelle.
      Note that the approaches to this marina are not as difficult as it would appear from the posts below. Proceed up the Anclote River to red 50 and turn to Stbd and then closely hug the port shoreline passing closely to the vessels tied to shore. Avoid the shallows on the Stbd side of the channel as you enter.
      There are a number of larger boats in the marina area that likely draw more than 5 feet.
      From the marina it is a short walk into the center of town with grocery stores and bars. The floating dock area where we had tied up was very nice and new. It was however quite a long walk maybe 200 yards to the showers, laundry & clubhouse facilities
      The rate of $ .75 per foot (per day?) for weekly stays for Loopers as posted below is incorrect. The correct rate is $7.50 per foot per week. That meant that instead of $199 per week for our 38 footer we were looking at $285 per week. We required a stay of between 2 & 3 weeks. On the very positive side If you pay for two weeks you can stay the next two free. Sort of like pay for 5 days stay for the next 2 free and equally pay for 2 weeks and stay free for the next two weeks I believe?
      The Looper daily rate is 1.50 per day per foot which is a discounted rate from the normal $2.00 per foot per day rate
      Here is a link to the marina’s site
      http://www.turtlecove-marina.com/index2.html
      Kismet

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Tarpon Springs and Spring Bayou

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    • Caledesi Island State Park Marina (north of Dunedin)

      As I recall, the entrance channel leading to Caladesi Island State Park Marina (from Hurricane Pass) can be a bit of a challenge for first timers, but otherwise, this is a pretty good facility for those who just want to get away from the maddening crowd. It lies just north of the Dunedin and the Honeymoon Island Bridge

      This is a great spot after you get in. We draw 4 1/2 and saw 5 and 4.8 going across the small bay to the marked entrance into the Park. Definitely do it on a rising tide. Great protection once you are in. Avoid the weekends as it is a popular spot for boat clubs. The 100+ slip marina was full the weekend we were there, but during the first part of the week there were only 8 boats. The fairways are narrow and become more so after the 30+ powerboats and sailboats are in the slips.
      S/V Two If By Sea

      Subject: Hurricane Pass
      Cruising News: We just visited Caladesi Island State Park which is near Hurricane Pass, north of Dunedin. Although we did not use it, we saw several sailboats going in and out of it. We talked to one boat who uses it regularly, drawing 4.3\’. He told use that the markers are accurate and he saw nothing less than 6\’.
      David S. Power

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Caladesi Island Start Park Marina

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    • Dunedin Marina (north of Clearwater, near St. M. 139)

      We LOVE spending time at Dunedin City Marina, not the least reason for which is that Sea Sea Riders restaurant, and Kelly’s Bistro are within easy walking distance. Both of these are outstanding dining choices!

      Wife, dog and I have stayed a dozen times at friendly Dunedin Marina in the past decade. Dockmaster Bill is great and will assign an inside protected slip if available. The transient slips are at the entrance and can be tricky with current and uncomfortable with strong wind from the west so be sure to ask for an inside slip. The town has a great nightlife, all within walking distance.
      Kevin Mulligan

      Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Marina Directory Listing For Dunedin Marina

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    • Cruising to Tarpon Springs and Anclote River (north of Clearwater)

      The question and answer sequence below is taken from the Net’s “Ask Your Neighbor” page (/category/ask-your-neighbor/). I thought this good advice would be of even more value here on the Net’s “Western Florida” Cruising News Section.
      I join with Captain Kendrick in recommending a cruise up Anclote River to Tarpon Springs. This is a delightful port of call, with an embarrassment of riches when it comes to good places to dine ashore.

      Subject: Tarpon Springs and environs
      Cruising News: We’re planning a cruise north from Punta Gorda as far as Tarpon Springs, if it’s worth the extra miles from Clearwater. Can anyone shed light on TS as a destination? We’re a 38′ Carver drawing 3.5′. Thanks for any input!
      Eric Norlin

      A visit to Tarpon Springs is definitely recommended. We recently cruised from Cape Coral to Tarpon Springs in a 41 foot express cruiser with a draft similar to yours. Tarpon Springs is less than 20 nautical miles from Clearwater Beach with no navigational challenges along the way. We stayed at the Tarpon Springs City Marina for two nights. The marina is located on Dodecanese Boulevard near the US 19A Bridge over the Anclote River. This is the Sponge Dock area lined with shops, restaurants, bakeries, tours, etc. We ate at Rusty Bellies and were very satisfied. A two day visit was about right for us. More information about Tarpon Springs City Marina is available in the Cruiser’s Net Marinas section.
      Doug Kendrick

      We have stopped in Tarpon Springs when we were in the area in 2007 and again in 2009 both times we stayed at the city marina which is not a fancy place but right on the main drag so close to many shops and restaurants the folks at the marina and in town are very nice. We both love Greek food so that is a big draw for us.
      We will be stopping there again on our cruise south in the spring of 2010. There is nice scenery along the river on the way in.
      Steve Willett

      Click Here For The Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Marina Directory Listing For Tarpon Springs City Marina

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    • Tarpon Springs City Marina – Detailed Report (Anclote River)

      According to my own observations, Captian Kendrick’s report below concerning Tarpon Springs City Marina is spot on.

      We stayed at Tarpon Springs City Marina the nights of 21 and 22 November 2009.
      There are only four transient slips available so call ahead for availability. We were disappointed with the narrow, unsteady finger piers. We felt uncomfortable when using them. In addition, the finger piers are relatively short and could pose a problem for a boat with a side entrance.
      The rest rooms are open to the public during the day. A $5 deposit will get a key to enter after hours. If there are showers there, we failed to find them. The location is great for shopping, eating, and sightseeing but noisy as it is very near the Route 19A bridge over the river.
      However, the noise drops after dark as traffic lessens. A Winn Dixie Supermarket is a pleasant, but long, walk. Walk South on [Highway] 19A to East Athens street, go left to Safford Avenue, then right on Safford. Return to 19A by turning right onto West Morgan Street. Winn Dixie is on the East side of 19A to the left. Safford has a pedestrian/bicycle walk in the median with benches placed here and there.
      Doug Kendrick

      Click Here For The Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Marina Directory Listing For Tarpon Springs City Marina

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    • Caledesi Island State Park Marina (north of Dunedin)

      As I recall, the entrance channel leading to Caladesi Island State Park Marina (from Hurricane Pass) can be a bit of a challenge for first timers, but otherwise, this is a pretty good facility for those who just want to get away from the maddening crowd.

      Subject: Caladisi Island State Park Marina
      Cruising News: We visited Caladisi Island State Park\’s marina for three days beginning 18 November 2009. The marina is modern with new floating piers, water and 30 ampere electricity at almost all slips.
      Most of the slips are for 12 foot beam, but there are eight for various beams up to 17 feet. The wider beam slips can not be reserved but the T heads can be used for wider/longer vessels, however one must pay for two slips on the T. Prices are $1.00 per foot (plus 12 percent tax) with a 50 percent discount for Florida residents over 65. There is a snack bar (hamburgers, hot dogs, etc.) and individual rest rooms, but no fuel, pump-out, or services. The beach has been rated America\’s Best Beach two years in a row. There is a really nice nature path and picnic shelters. This is a great, inexpensive place to relax if your boat can stand the relatively shallow approach channel. We left at low tide and had enough water for our 3 foot 6 inch inch draft.
      Doug Kendrick

      We must have been following in Capt. Kendricks footsteps, we were at both Caladesi and Tarpon Springs City Marina this last week. I’d second everything he says. Cladesi Island is a fabulous unspoiled beach and park with a very well protected clean and well maintained marina. Following the reccomended course line from marker #14 of the Hurricane Pass channel straight across to the Caldesi channel marker #1 we never had less than 5 feet at mid-tide. There were a couple of 50 foot power boats and some 35 foot sailboats there when we were there. 30 amp electric is reliable and included in the slip price. The only disapointment for us was no showers. There are shore heads and changing rooms, but the only showers are open-air, cold water showers on the beach crossovers. The sunsets and the shelling on the beach are world-class.
      Jonathan Gorham

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    • Tarpon Springs City Marina

      Tarpon Springs City Marina is found a good distance upstream on the Anclote River, in the heart of downtown Tarpon Springs. It is a small, but friendly facility, and is only one of two that provide any sort of transient dockage within walking distance of the town’s business district.

      We were in Tarpon Springs in May and stayed at the municiple marina. We draft 5’8’³ and had no problems navigating up stream or down. We arrived early evening on the 15th and left the marina the afternoon of the 21st to anchor near the park at the river entrance. We spent two nights there on the hook before heading to Apalachicola.
      Reggie Good

      Click Here For The Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Marina Directory Listing For Tarpon Springs City Marina

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    • Great Repair Yard in Tarpon Springs – Neptune Marine

      It’s always a very good thing to discover a quality boat repair yard. After reading Capt. Tom’s message below, looks like Tarpon Springs (found upsream on Anclote River, north of Clearwater) has one of the best!

      To All
      Just got the boat back after 4 months in the yard [Neptune Marine]. We had the hull painted with Awlgrip 2000, bottom job, boot stripe, and all hardware above the waterline changed out. These folks did a great job. Price was reasonable. They were meticulous about the details. Boat was ship shape and clean when finished (First mate was flabberghasted – They even dusted). If you need work done anywhere around Tarpon Springs Florida, I give the yard two thumbs up!
      Unfortunately, there are no yards in Clearwater anymore (nor any movie theaters, but that’s another matter).
      Capt Tom
      Carina

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    • Dunedin Municipal Marina (Statute Mile 139)

      Dunedin Municipal Marina is a smaller, city owned operation, but the harbor is well sheltered, and there is wondeful dining nearby. If you berth here, don’t dare miss dinner at nearby Kelly’s!

      Subject: Dunedin Municipal Marina
      Cruising News: We were able to get a transient slip at this marina for the December 6 boat parade. Only needed a couple of days advance notice. The harbor master was extremely friendly and helpful.
      Manuel Farinas

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Dunedin Municipal Marina

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