Poulsbo company, Navy ship team up to offer electric boat rentals
By RACHEL BRANT
Bremerton Patriot Staff writer
July 4, 2008 · Updated 10:13 AM
Electric boat rentals
$49/hour Monday-Friday until the end of June
$69/hour regular price
People at least 21 years old may rent boats at the USS Turner Joy Ship Museum building located on the Bremerton boardwalk.
Reservations: (360) 792-2457
USS Turner Joy rents out electric boats.
The people of Poulsbo are no longer the only ones who get to cruise the waters of Kitsap County in electric boats.
Northwest Boat Rentals in Poulsbo recently teamed up with the USS Turner Joy to rent out electric boats.
What a great opportunity for people who dont own a boat or dont want to own a boat to get out on the water, said Northwest Boat Rentals President Bill Archer.
The USS Turner Joy got an electric boat about a month ago and Turner Joy Executive Director Bill Metcalf said there has been a lot of interest in the boats.
More and more (people are interested) as people realize what it is, Metcalf said. Many people are enthralled by the technology.
The electric boat can seat 12 people around a small table and includes a radio, CD player and depth finder as well as a small first aid kit, life safety ring and 12 life jackets.
Archer said in nearly three years, Northwest Boat Rentals has had about 560 two-hour rentals of the electric boats, making them an extremely popular venture for boaters and non-boaters alike.
In Poulsbo, we run them from 10 in the morning to 10 in the evening, Archer said.
Both Metcalf and Archer said the electric boats are easy to operate, but Metcalf will give people a quick lesson, if requested, before taking to the water.
Theyre extremely safe for novices, Metcalf said. Im giving lessons with approximately eight hours of experience, so its not that difficult to operate.
Archer said in almost three years, there have been no accidents or incidents involving the boats.
The fun thing about it is at six knots, you cant really get in any trouble, Metcalf said.
Metcalf said the electric boats are very quiet and make for a pleasant trip on the water.
When youre at top end you can still have a conversation with people without having to shout, Metcalf said.
Metcalf said the wildlife doesnt even seem bothered by the boats. He took a trip in an electric boat in Poulsbo and drove up close to a group of seals who didnt seem bothered by what little noise the boat made.
You could reach out and actually tweak their little noses, Metcalf said with a smile.
Metcalf and Archer said the boats batteries can last about 10 hours before needing to be recharged.
At half speed with new, fresh batteries, Ive seen people go 18 hours, Metcalf said.
The USS Turner Joy currently has one electric boat, but Metcalf said he plans to have two or three boats in the future and come winter, the boats will be equipped with heaters.
The USS Turner Joy also will have canoes from Northwest Boat Rentals to buy or rent starting next week. Northwest Boat Rentals will be the exclusive dealer on the peninsula for NuCanoes. NuCanoes are a combination of a sit-on-top kayak and a sport canoe, according to its Web site, www.nucanoe.com.
You can stand up in it. Its the neatest thing, Archer said. This is a really unique product.
Electric boats are ideal for corporate outings, dinner parties, even weddings, Archer said. The boats cost $49 an hour until the end of June and $69 an hour at regular price.
People must be at least 21 years old to rent a boat and the USS Turner Joy is currently taking boat reservations for the Fourth of July to allow people to watch the Port Orchard fireworks from the water.
Youll rent it and see that youll want to come out for a couple hours, Metcalf said.