Boaters in cold climes are in stasis through the long winter nap, but not boatyards. In boatyards, a flurry of unique work goes on unseen at this time of year. What kind of work? you might ask, for nary anyone in the general public can determine any activity from the external look of a winter boatyard.
But deep in the heated sheds and administrative offices there is life. The Operations and HR managers are working on ads for spring-time help in the paint department and looking for kids to man the gas dock this coming summer. By now stock room personnel are completing their inventory audits. Sales staff members are sending out mooring contracts, soliciting pre-launch work, and producing the first blush of spring launch schedules. In the heated boat sheds, high priority winter projects get a final coat of varnish or paint, a new engine, a swim platform. The engine shop has rows of outboards undergoing annual maintenance. Yard management is preparing to attend the local winter boat shows and the purchasing manager is placing discounted bottom paint orders by the pallet for the coming season. The launch crew is performing maintenance on their skiffs and equipment.
It is this busy planning and preparation before the storm of customers arrives in early spring that will make things go smoothly when the snow and ice retreat. The air in the boatyard is already ripe with anticipation. You might not see it, but a boatyard in winter works toward a boater’s dreams soon to come true.