Blue Turtle Cruising

Blue Turtle crew at TrawlerFest – Stuart, FL 2017

As we announced back in January, we were invited to give a seminar at TrawlerFest in Stuart, FL on “Cruising to the Dry Tortugas”. Two weeks ago, we gave the same seminar at the Yachts Miami Beach show as part of Passagemaker Magazine’s CruiserPort free educational boat seminars. While the Miami show was a lot of fun for us, TrawlerFest was a blast!

Kalisiks at Trawlerfest
The Kalisiks at Trawlerfest
Our official TrawlerFest Presenter badges

The TrawlerFest seminars were very well attended and they were not free, so the crowd we had was definitely more interested and interactive about our chosen topic. The presentation went great especially after we tweaked it some after the Miami show and we had quite a few questions from the crowd of about 20. It was great to share our experiences cruising to the Dry Tortugas and share videos and photos we’ve taken both above and under water.  Look for an upcoming post containing our full presentation along with maps and resources.

trawlerfest presentation
Kim takes everyone through a little history of the Dry Tortugas
Randy goes over some cruising scenarios
Corey discusses fishing in the Dry Tortugas

After our seminar was over, I was invited to sit in on the Admiral’s Roundtable, a women-only panel discussion. I, along with 4 other experienced cruising women sat as a panel and answered questions from a crowd of around 30-40 women. Questions ranged from boat handling, single vs. twin engines, safety and medical precautions to storage help, cooking and how to fit all your stuff into such a small space. I was very honored to be part of such a great panel of women who’ve cruised way further that I can imagine. To me, this panel discussion was the best part of the day!

Admiral’s Roundtable – women-only panel discussion
Taking questions from the ladies
While in Stuart, we got to meet up with friends, Tim and Joan, our first neighbors at Snook Bight

The next day, Randy, Corey and I decided to take in one of the morning seminars before heading to the in-water show. We attended “Bahamas Bound: Destination Abacos” by Alyse Caldwell. I had met Alyse the previous day since she was on the women’s panel discussion and her Bahamas presentation had Randy and I ready to quit our jobs and take off for the Bahamas!  The seminar was very thorough and detailed and Alyse was an excellent presenter.

Corey moves up to get a better view in the crowded seminar, “Bahamas Bound…”

After the seminar, we hit the in-water show on the docks. The show seemed a little small compared to a TrawlerFest that Randy and I attended years ago when we were looking for a boat, but the boats on display were no disappointment.  Granted, most of the boats in the show are what we call “lottery” boats, like Nordhavn, Kadey Krogen and Beneteau trawlers and climbing around on them was amazing. We toured a beautiful Grand Banks 42′, a Nordhavn 40′, Krogen Express 55′, Kadey Krogen 44′ and Beneteau Swift Trawler 50′. All of them were gorgeous trawlers but Kadey Krogen still wins my heart. I love the new Kadey Krogen slogan, “The boat she’ll say Yes to” — they’re not kidding, I say YES! Randy and I fell in love with the Kadey Krogen 42′ when we first searched for boats but even the older ones were out of our price range. We hope maybe someday that just might be our “retirement” boat.

Overview of the show
Hutchinson Island Resort docks
Randy and Corey entering the in-water show
Booths on display at the show
Corey and I walking the docks
Some of the trawlers on display
42′ Grand Banks
Nordhavn trawler
Krogen Express swift trawler
55′ Krogen Express swift trawler
interior of Krogen Express swift trawler
Master stateroom on the Krogen Express
Krogen Express pilothouse
Krogen Express pilothouse
Kadey Krogen trawler
Kadey Krogen 44′
Kadey Krogen trawler pilothouse
Kadey Krogen pilothouse
Trawlerfest boat show
View of the show from the bridge of a Kadey Krogen
Trawlerfest view from the bridge
trawlerfest boat show
Gorgeous trawlers on display at TrawlerFest
top deck of custom trawler
Top deck of a custom trawler

Overall, we had a fabulous time at TrawlerFest touring boats and meeting some amazing cruisers. We even met the Editor-in-Chief of Passagemaker and discussed possibly writing an article about the Dry Tortugas for an upcoming issue of the magazine. Stay tuned…

4 thoughts on “Blue Turtle crew at TrawlerFest – Stuart, FL 2017”

  1. Practice makes perfect. Thanks for the great photos. Really sorry to have missed this year’s event.

    What did you glean from the event such as boat/equipment ideas that you discovered walking the docks that you thought were useful, insights that you gained from the other seminars, interesting stories/lessons learned that you gleaned from other cruisers etc. ??

    • Hi Ken,

      We only had the time to take in one seminar – the one about the Bahamas – and it was really a great overview to get us started in planning a trip like that. The most important takeaway was to not be in a hurry and properly wait out a weather window so everyone on board will have a pleasant experience. Since we were short on time (we both still work) we only had one morning to visit the booths and boats. There really weren’t very many booths for boat/equipment at all. Most of it we had already seen and more at the Miami show. The boats were all way out our price range – very high end new boats but it definitely gives us an idea of what we want should we ever win the lottery. We all have to dream, don’t we 🙂

      I’d say the best part of the trip was just meeting like-minded folks like us that like to cruise.


  2. Loved this post . Very informative . Wish they had more used trawlers for sale in our price range. But it sounds like the folks that attended really learned about things.

    • Thanks Beth! I agree with the selection of boats. Last Trawlerfest Randy and I visited (several years ago) had a much wider and larger selection of new and older boats in different price ranges. The boats at this Trawlerfest seemed to be all newer and much higher end. I told Randy that since we toured these fancy boats that we at least have an idea of what to get should we ever win the lottery of strike it rich 🙂


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