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SunFest (Wednesday through Sunday) makes it easier on boaters

bmarkeybmarkey Posts: 319 Deckhand
The weather is supposed to clear by late week, almost in time for SunFest, which is set for Wednesday through Sunday on the Downtown West Palm Beach Waterfront.

This is the second year SunFest has made the massive event a bit more accessible to boaters. No, we still can't use the nice docks West Palm Beach built just for events like this, but for the second year, captains may drop off their passengers at the southernmost dock at the Waterfront, then anchor in the Intracoastal Waterway and take a water taxi in. Boat/US is handling the water taxi duties, charging a reasonable $5 per person round trip. That fee used to be much higher.

Also, "BoatU.S. Members with Unlimited or Unlimited Gold on-the-water towing service will receive free round trip transportation via water taxi courtesy of TowBoatU.S. Palm Beach. Members must present a valid Membership card to the captain to receive free transportation. Only the person listed on the Membership card will receive free water taxi transportation. Members should hail TowBoatU.S. on VHF 10 for pick up and drop off."

Founded in 1982, SunFest is Florida’s largest waterfront music and art festival. Held annually in downtown West Palm Beach, Florida the first week in May, SunFest attracts more than 270,000 visitors. The festival and the patrons that it attracts have a very positive impact on the community.

I'm looking forward to seeing The Outlaws, Marshall Tucker, Foreigner, Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, Creed, All American Rejects, Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Snoop Dogg and a bunch of other music.

So, who's going? Maybe we can get another flotilla going for the fireworks Sunday.

From the SunFest Web site

SunFest is not just for land-bound travelers, boaters are always welcome to anchor in the Intracoastal Waterway in front of the SunFest site and take the water taxi to the festival’s waterfront gate. (FOR ANCHORED BOATERS)

Hours of Operation:

Wednesday 5 – 11 p.m.
Thursday 5 – 11 p.m.
Friday 5 – 11:30 p.m.
Saturday Noon – 11:30 p.m.
*Sunday Noon – 10 p.m.


$5.00 round trip. Guest will be provided a ticket that is required for the second leg of the trip. If the guest cannot produce the ticket they will be charged another $5.00.

*On Sunday Water Taxi service will be suspended from 8:30pm until the Verizon Wireless Fireworks Show is completed (approximately 9:20pm).

Guest will need to hail Towboat U.S. by VHF Channel 10.

Vessels will be permitted to drop off and pick up guests Wednesday through Sunday at the designated location only. The loading and un-loading area is located on the South Dock. Vessels will not be permitted to tie up for any other reasons. North and Middle Docks will not be open to any vessels unless previously approved by SunFest.

Ticket Sales

The gate on the South Dock will be operated in the same manner as all other public gates. We will sell tickets and stamp for re-entry.

For more information please visit the TowBoat U.S.-Palm Beach Facebook page.

Bob Markey
United Realty Group
Sport, Event & Real Estate Photography
Palms West Photo


  • CaptTaterCaptTater Posts: 20,096 AG
    I did not read the story but if you take tax payers money maybe you should be held to some standards.-Cyclist
    when we say the same thing about welfare recipients, you cry like a wounded buffalo Sopchoppy
    It's their money, they spend it how they like. Truth and honesty have nothing to do with it. - Mr Jr
    "“A radical is one who advocates sweeping changes in the existing laws and methods of government.” "
  • bmarkeybmarkey Posts: 319 Deckhand
    So who brought their boat to SunFest? How was your experience?

    I did not (thanks to having no one willing to go with me) bring my boat, but I was at SunFest for three days and checked out the new boating rules. I liked what I saw.

    I still believe boaters should be able to use the docks (built for events such as this), but at least now they can drop off and pick up passengers at the far south dock at no charge. Boat/U.S. again ran the water taxi for $5 round trip (not bad), and free for members.

    Boats now are allowed to anchor very close to the docks and sea wall (almost within jumping distance). I have not noticed them that close for decades. Even during the concerts, some boats were very close to the docks and sea wall, allowing them to clearly hear the concerts from the main north (Bank of America) stage. They probably heard the music better than many landlubbers.

    Even for the fireworks Sunday night (still miss the Friday night fireworks, when boats would number 1,000 or more), the boats were allow to remain around the docks and sea wall. They were formerly forced out toward the middle of the Intracoastal and on the Palm Beach side of the channel. The way the wind was blowing, had they been out there this time, they would have seen much smoke and few bursts.

    The fireworks were great, BTW, despite a glitch that digitally garbled and then stopped the feed from The Gator (98.7 FM) on land about one-third of the way through. Did anyone hear the simulcast music from their cars or boats, or was the problem at the station?

    It was a great event and the music this year (especially Foreigner) was fantastic.

    Bob Markey
    United Realty Group
    Sport, Event & Real Estate Photography
    Palms West Photo
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