New Owners Taking Over Schimpf’s Marina in Little Egg Harbor

Aug 02, 2017
Photo by: Pat Johnson Dan and Glen Azzolino in their new machine shop at South Port Marina, where they service and repair Kawasaki Jet Skis, other personal watercraft and boats.

Dan and Glen Azzolino have operated Watersports of Long Beach Island for over 10 years as the area’s Kawasaki Jet Ski dealership, and recently moved that operation from Brant Beach to East Bay Avenue on Bonnet Island, Manahawkin, on the westbound side of the Causeway, next to Causeway Marina and Boat Rental. That was last year. This year they are branching out by purchasing an established marina on Tuckerton Creek.

Located off Great Bay Boulevard, Schimpf’s Marina is being renamed South Port Marina by the brothers and they are adding their services as topnotch mechanics for Jet Skis, jet boats as well as all types of boats.

The full service marina sits prettily on Tuckerton Creek, just five minutes to the bay, even when following the “no wake” rules of the creek.

The big open bay of the mechanics’ shop offers them plenty of storage space for the Jet Skis that come to them for repair or maintenance. There’s also room to work on some pretty big boats, as one of their employees demonstrated by hauling out a giant screwdriver and pretending to use it on a Jet Ski.

The 7-acre marina has over 70 in-water slips for rent that can accommodate up to 26-foot boats and they have plenty of rack storage for Jet Skis and boats. And get this, they also offer what amounts to a Jet Ski/jet boat concierge service. They will take a vessel off the storage rack and put it in the water for the owner for a weekend and then take it out, hose it down, clean it and put it back on the rack until the customer is ready to use it again.

“It’s easier for the customer. They just come and use it. Not everyone has the time or inclination to care for a boat or Jet Ski and it’s better for it to be out of the water,” said Dan.

“They call on Friday and we take the boat off the rack with the lift and launch it for them and they just come and use it and then we pull it out on Sunday. It’s a nice feature for our customers,” added Glen.

Dry storage also means the boats won’t have to be bottom-painted every year.

South Port Marina also has a fuel dock featuring 89-octane Slipstream fuel, with an additive that protects boat motors. Conveniently next to the fuel dock is a bait shop carrying live and frozen bait, as well as ice, tackle, refreshments and a well-stocked ships store.

Another popular item they sell are floating Wave Armor docks for easy personal watercraft storage at lagoon homes. “Personal watercraft have to be stored out of the water,” explained Glen. They can also sell trailers and both new and used Jet Skis from their Manahawkin site, and they deliver.

Winterization and shrink-wrapping, providing secure winter mainland storage and then servicing boats for spring will keep the Azzolinos busy year ’round.

Dan and Glen grew up around marinas all their lives, boating and fishing with their father and grandfather in Beach Haven and love the water. That’s the draw for owning this type of hands-on business.

“It’s nice being on the water rather than sitting in an office,” said Dan.

“I worked for JPMorgan for 10 months and realized it was not for me,” said Glen.

Now with families and the two businesses, the annual trips to the Florida Keys to go fishing have been set aside for the time being. But servicing the boating, fishing and watersports recreation life is almost as good as being on the water.

By purchasing Schimpf’s Marina, the brothers are getting 30 years’ worth of goodwill built up by Ginny Schimpf.

Glen lives locally and knew Ginny from fueling his boat there for years while he commuted to work by boat. “The marina wasn’t really for sale, but after many conversations with her, she said she was ready to retire as it was time to pass the baton and spend more time with a new grandchild and family. The timing was perfect and the rest is history.”

Besides servicing boats and Jet Skis, the Azzolinos want to eventually rent small center console and pontoon boats for crabbing and fishing, or for heading out to a party island or even sunset watching.

A plan to outfit the place with RV hookups is also in the works. Right now they have water and electric to the docks, but not for RVs.

Stop in and meet the brothers at South Port Marina, 32 North Boom Way (off Great Bay Boulevard) in Little Egg Harbor. Telephone 609-296-6227 or follow on Facebook and Instagram @watersportslbi @southportmarinanj.

— Pat Johnson

patjohnson@thesandpaper.net

 

 

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