Port Messick MarinaSports & Recreation in Poquoson, Virginia
Dear Commercial Watermen still needing some fishing gear licenses for this year. Please note in an earlier Facebook post that Port Messick Marina will be shutting down for good in June. However, I would like to provide you two opportunities this weekend to buy your licenses at Messick Point rather than having to take a 1/2 day off from work to hunt for a parking space near the VMRC building in Newport News to buy your licenses. I will be available Saturday and Sunday mornings this weekend, 9am-11am, to sell licenses at the Port Messick Marina Store. Be safe out there.
It's a bittersweet end for Port Messick Marina.
Earlier this week, the grant for constructing the breakwater was approved. The City now has the funds necessary to press forward with construction of the breakwater that was approved last year.
As many of you know, I spent considerable time, energy, and money towards improving or obtaining approvals to improve the little bathroom parcel next to the boat ramp and obtaining approvals and funding for a breakwater to protect the ...City Pier and Front Cove harbor where many waterwen work and park their boats at poles overnight.
Port Messick Marina's lease of the bathroom parcel expires on June 30, 2015. The goal for Port Messick Marina has been to purchase from the City the bathroom parcel prior to the deadline for building a Grill that was approved for construction last summer. Unfortunately, the banks are not interested in lending, without a huge downpayment, to a marina that has little to no slip rental income necessary to offset costs of other improvements such as a risky seasonal restaurant. Since the breakwater will not be built until late summer or early Fall, the slip rental income will not mature prior to the deadline. The City has decided not to renew my lease or to extend the deadline. And, I cannot afford to continue losing money on a seasonal venue without sufficient slip rental income to offset the costs.
Therefore, Port Messick Marina will be vacating the blue marina store on the bathroom parcel some time after the Memorial Day weekend and prior to the June 30th deadline so that the City may proceed with other plans for the property.
It has been my dream that the approved Grill building would be built, to serve as a community center, as a rental facility for weddings and reunions, and as a summer day camp to teach the next generation the ways of the waterman. It now seems doubtful that this dream will come true.
It has also been my dream that VIMS would accept my offer to help with blue crab studies in Back River to help improve the blue crab stock for the next generation of watermen. This dream came true. After two years of convincing VIMS that such a study was needed, VIMS will start next week a long-term blue crab research study on female spawning and habitation in Back River. I hope that this research will proceed as planned and result in a successful restocking program for the watermen.
I have done all that I can for now at Messick Point.
In closing, I would like to wish the City of Poquoson the very best in pressing forward to improve Messick Point, giving it the attention that our wonderful community deserves.
Port Messick Marina has teamed with www.slipfinder.com for increasing its advertisement and reservations for transient slips at the marina.
An update on Port Messick Marina at Messick Point in Poquoson, VA: Slip rental income is vital for a marina to be successful. It has been stated for years that the City Pier would benefit greatly by installing a breakwater to protect it from the waves. Last year, an engineered breakwater design purchased by Port Messick Marina from a local engineering company was approved for construction by the governing agencies (VMRC, ACOE, etc). The City then assumed ownership of the ...breakwater project since no bank would lend funds to build it. Earlier this year, the City of Poquoson applied for a large grant for building the breakwater in 2015 (rather than waiting until 2017 using funds in the City's Capital Improvements budget). Decision by the VA Port Authority on grant winners is expected in May. If the grant is awarded to the City, then my understanding is that the breakwater will be built this Summer (2015). After the breakwater is built, the City Pier and the harbor will be protected from the waves. Then, minor modifications to the City Pier can be implemented that allows easier access from the boat to the pier and creates more slips for transient boaters. The fate of the City-approved Plum Tree Island Grill & Tiki Bar at Port Messick Marina hinges on the breakwater. Without slip rental income (that is expected to increase substantially after the breakwater is installed), no bank will take a chance on funding a seasonal restaurant at Messick Point. We remain optimistic that all construction plans that have been approved will actually be built. We simply need some help from grants when banks will not lend the funds to build. Thank you for your continued support of Messick Point. This week and next week, the City and I are meeting with other agencies that offer grants to working waterfronts and marinas. Please keep us in your thoughts as we continue to press forward to build the type of marina that Messick Point needs.
The City is pursuing a large grant for building the breakwater in 2015 (rather than waiting until 2017 using funds in the City's Capital Improvements budget). Slip leases should increase substantially by Springtime as the news of the breakwater and the Tiki Bar spread.