Nauti Marina owners see potential in McGregor

Error message

  • Warning: array_merge(): Expected parameter 1 to be an array, bool given in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 133 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Notice: Trying to get property 'settings' of non-object in _simpleads_adgroup_settings() (line 343 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Warning: array_merge(): Expected parameter 1 to be an array, bool given in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 157 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Notice: Trying to access array offset on value of type null in include() (line 24 of /home/pdccourier/www/www/sites/all/modules/simpleads/templates/simpleads_ajax_call.tpl.php).

The McGregor-Marquette Chamber of Commerce and city of McGregor officially welcomed Nauti Marina to McGregor last week, with a ribbon cutting on the new walkway. Nauti Marina owners Shannon Alber and Dylan Borglum (front, center) are pictured with chamber president Katie Ruff, chamber board member Anne Kruse, chamber executive director Jessica Goltz; (back) chamber board member Diane Malcom, city council member Charlie Carroll, deputy city clerk/economic development lead Duane Boelman, city administrator Lynette McManus, mayor Lyle Troester, chamber board member Joe Brooks and resident Sharon Brooks. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

One of the biggest changes at the marina has been at the gas dock. “We fixed the front of it so it’s safe for boats to dock against it, and we really cleaned up the shack and added a bunch of stuff that are necessities for boating,” said owner Dylan Borglum. (Photo courtesy of Nauti Marina)

Aptly named the Nauti Shack, the space offers everything from oil, toilet paper, cold drinks and life jackets to flower leis, sailor hats and Aqua Lily Pad floating water mats. (Photo courtesy of Nauti Marina)

By Audrey Posten, Times-Register

 

McGregor Marina has been under new ownership as Nauti Marina since mid-summer, and owners Shannon Alber and Dylan Borglum have already overseen multiple improvements along with the addition of services—and even more plans are in the works.

 

“We talked over what do you improve first and in what order,” said Alber. “It’s quite a process figuring it out, how you can afford it and how you can get it done in a timely manner.”

 

The venture is nothing new for Alber, who also runs a marina in Harpers Ferry. He was approached as far back as two to three years ago about taking on McGregor too.

 

“I came and looked at it. It was a great spot, great potential, but it was just way too much for me. I was just getting started in Harpers,” he recalled. “Now, I’m happy where I’m at there.”

 

When Borglum approached him this spring with a partnership proposal, he was willing to listen.

 

“He did a lot of homework and had a lot of good responses on how to make it easier and to improve, which I was happy with,” Alber said.

 

“My wife and I came and looked at it and thought the same thing: ‘Gosh it’s a lot of work—a pretty big marina for someone to do by themselves,’” Borglum noted. “But Shannon was the first person I thought of. It’s worked out really well.”

 

First on the agenda has been fixing or replacing dangerous spots or safety hazards.

 

“We’re taking the worst dock apart right now so we can get that off the water. We want to make sure all the docks are safe for people to use,” Borglum said. 

 

In August, the walkway between the public boat ramp and restaurant building was replaced.

 

“We put this one in right away, that way we can move boats to that one. We also see the public dock is full a lot of times, so we want to make sure people have a place to park,” he added.

 

The two said the biggest change has been at the gas dock.

 

“We fixed the front of it so it’s safe for boats to dock against it, and we really cleaned up the shack and added a bunch of stuff that are necessities for boating,” Borglum said.

 

Now aptly named the Nauti Shack, the space offers everything from oil, toilet paper, cold drinks and life jackets to flower leis, sailor hats and Aqua Lily Pad floating water mats.

 

“It’s clean and inviting. You walk in and there’s a lot of fun stuff around,” said Alber. “There’s stuff you need plus stuff you don’t—stuff kids want and stuff adults want.”

 

Next year, Alber hopes the Nauti Shack can offer more equipment rentals, such as kayaks or paddle boards.

 

“Another big improvement is we’re really upgrading the rental fleet,” which includes houseboats and pontoons, said Borglum. “Some of the existing stuff is getting re-done and cleaned up. We already purchased two newer pontoons.”

 

Nauti Marina offers both covered and uncovered slips, accommodating various boat sizes.

 

“Currently, we’re not going to have a lot of spots for bigger cruisers, but we do have some. We’re seeing the need for that go down, so we’re trying to accommodate the pontoons and pleasure boats because that seems to be what everyone is getting into,” Borglum shared.

 

“Our goal is to add more covered slips down the road,” added Alber.

 

The restaurant, which housed the McGregor Beer and Bratz Garden, will be remodeled. The plan is to open it this spring with a newer bar, frontal facelift and additional walkway outside.

 

“We’re hoping to find a good person to come and lease it and make it a fun place,” said Alber. 

 

Its proximity to the river already makes the restaurant a prime spot.

 

“Sitting on that deck is fun because there’s so much barge traffic, and there are always eagles around. You get the full current and can see both sides—a lot of water,” he stated. “It’s a beautiful spot and one of the best locations between the locks.”

 

The marina improvements have been met favorably by both locals and visitors. The owners said the social media feedback has been a good morale booster, especially considering the long hours—often on nights and weekends—they, their employees and friends and family members have put in to the business.

 

“We’ve had a lot of unforeseen situations,” said Alber, “so when we can start noticing the improvements and hear the positive feedback, it really helps us keep going.”

 

Borglum stressed that Nauti Marina is open to ideas or suggestions from the community.

 

“We’re willing to listen and see what we can do,” he quipped.

 

They realize the marina’s importance to McGregor.

 

“We want this be the focus of the town—something the town is proud of,” Alber said.

Rate this article: 
Average: 4.7 (27 votes)