Local lakes see boat rentals increase, marina manager attributes hot, dry weather


LAKE MILTON, Ohio (WKBN) – The marinas at Lake Milton and West Branch State Park set records during July 4. More and more people are renting boats and doing so without having to own one.

There is nothing quite like being out on the water on a hot day. Boating is booming at West Branch State Park and Lake Milton.

Marinas see all boats rented on weekends and many on weekdays.

“It is sometimes difficult when we talk about two places. Sixty plus boats try to maintain and run all the time, but it’s better to be busy than not busy, ”said Zack Tasker, Marina Manager.

Marinas bought seven new boats this year and added four last year.

Pontoons are the most popular, followed by jet skis.

Renters must be 18 years old, have a boating license or driver’s license and pass a written boating safety exam.

“Today is everyone. We go from a 20 year old group on the boat to a 70 year old group having lunch or something on the water. It’s a very diverse group of people who hire more, ”Tasker said.

On Wednesday, people were enjoying the day on pontoons, speedboats, jet skis and some were just floating on the water.

Tasker recommends reserving boats as early as possible. On weekends, book two weeks in advance.

“I can see that the demand from businesses is persisting for a while. I really do. Once people get out here and see what the park is about, what boating is all about, how much fun it is, people turn into repeat customers, ”he said.

The marinas have a nautical club for regular tenants. A good year was to have 10 people in the club, this year it’s approaching 90.

“Our kids were so busy this year that we decided that instead of having a family vacation, we just decided to join this boat club and try to get out seven or eight times,” said Jason Reed of Munroe. Falls.

Tasker attributes the hot, dry weather of the past two years to the reason for the growth. He says not everything is linked to the pandemic.

He also recalls that the two lakes are dry. You cannot bring alcohol on the water.

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