4th of July Boating Checklist

The 4th is almost here, and that means only one
thing: boating, boating, and more boating. It might just be the ideal time of
the year to enjoy your boat; not only is it a national holiday, but it comes
right at the peak of summer – when the sun’s out and everybody’s ready to have
a good time.

But if you want your 4th of July boating
adventure to go off without a hitch, a little prep-work will go a long way.

Specifically, we think this checklist is a great way to
get started to make sure you have everything you need: from the quality and
maintenance of the boat itself to making sure you’ll be the captain of the
celebrations as well.

First
Things First: Maintenance and Safety

  • Inspect your boat. You should
    really do this every outing: check the electrical equipment, check your battery
    to ensure that it’s charged, check your fuel supply and inspect all lines for
    signs of corrosion or damage. Hopefully this spring you took our advice and
    heeded the spring inspection checklist, but if not, there’s no time better than the present.
    Items like fluids, the hull, the drain plug, and more should be inspected if
    you want to make sure your day goes off without a hitch.
  • Safety up. Make
    sure your boat complies with your local safety laws, including making sure that
    you have enough life vests for every planned guest – and even more if you’re
    not sure how many people you’ll need to accommodate.

We’ll be the first to admit that your boat and making sure
that it has all of the necessary safety equipment isn’t always the best part of
your day, but if you get it out of the way early on the holiday, you’ll free up
the rest of your time for fun under the sun.

Having
a Great 4th of July

Now that the boat’s ready, it’s important to focus on what
you’re going to do. Here are a few tips for ensuring everyone has a great time
this Independence Day:

  • Have a plan.
    Nothing’s worse than getting down to the water and realizing that you have no
    idea what to do. Don’t dictate the minutes like the chairman of the board, but
    you can always have a few suggestions handy: skiing, fishing, etc. And make
    sure you have the right equipment on hand.
  • Be a good host. In our opinion,
    a good host makes sure that people have responsible fun. That means no drinking
    on the boat – to comply with local laws – but having plenty of non-alcoholic
    refreshing beverages handy.
  • Bring the sunscreen.
    Nothing quite takes the edge out of a fun day like a sunburn; it’s better to
    stay protected as best you can. Sure, you can try to get some shade, but if
    you’re going to boat, you’re going to be exposed to the sun. Make sure to find
    a high SPF option that’s also water-resistant.

Let’s be honest: it doesn’t take much to ensure that the 4th
of July is fun; just some good food, good company, and good times is all you
really need. And if you have a boat, it’s a bit like having a holiday “cheat
code” to added fun. Just make sure that you enjoy the fun responsibly.

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