HISTORY OF ENGLEWOOD
Englewood is over 100 years old. Artifacts at Indian Mound Park (210 Winson Ave) date back as far as 1000 BC to 1350 AD. It is thought that Englewood was inhabited by the Colusa or Timacua Indians.
In 1884 Herbert Nicholas and his two brothers came to the area. In hopes of growing lemons. They named the town Englewood in remembrance of a town in Illinois.
Englewood offers a laid back environment with a taste of “Old Florida.” From our location (Harbor at Lemon Bay) North and South we have some of the best beaches, restaurants, and fishing. You can access the Gulf of Mexico via Stump Pass (South) or the Venice Jetty (North).
Don Pedro State Park – Located between Knight Island and Little Gasparilla Island. Only accessible by private boat or Ferry. Be sure to idle through the channel its only 2.5 feet deep. Great place to swim, snorkel, sunbath, or look for shells. This park has one mile of white sandy beaches. There are restrooms, BBQ grills and a huge Pavilion to provide shade during hot summer days. Dock space is available, please be sure to bring dock lines with you. Head south from Harbor at Lemon Bay passed Palm Island Marina and it’s located on the right. It will be marked with a Don Pedro sign.
Stump Pass Park – Located on the Barrier Island of Manasota Key. It’s a great area for swimming, sunbathing, escaping the crowds, picking up shells and finding sharks teeth. Also a great place to see manatee, dolphin, gopher tortoises, egrets, herons, and frigate birds. If you would like to try out tubing, wake boarding, or skiing you can do all of that in “Ski Alley” If you are heading out of Stump Pass hang a right. It’s the small section of water that runs along Manasota Key. On the weekends “Ski Alley” becomes a social hangout. People looking to escape the work week with friend’s, music, and cocktails.
Fishing – Lemon Bay offers some of the best fishing. Redfish, Sheepshead, Mangrove Snapper, and Trout to name a few. In the Gulf of Mexico, you can catch, Grouper, Bonita, Amberjack, Shark, and many more. We ask that you keep in compliance with fishing regulations along with having a fishing license. Here is a website you can check out www.myfwc.com.
BAIT & TACKLE
Englewood Bait House – Located on the ICW Marker 22 and 24 by the Tom Adams Bridge. Been in business for 40 years. Monitors VHF Channel 16. www.sunstate.com/baithouse
Fisherman’s Edge Tackle Inc. – located at 4425 Placida Rd Grove City, 34224
Flounders on the Beach – Is accessible by boat or by car. Fun beach atmosphere with a huge outdoor stage to accommodate local bands during the week and on weekends. Good food and good fun for all ages. Located on the ICW with dock space (bring your own dock lines)
White Elephant Pub – Accessible by car or boat. Located on the ICW with plenty of dock space (bring your own dock lines)
Rum Bay – Located on Palm Island marker #9A just south of Stump Pass. It’s been in this area for 25 years. Only accessible by private vessel or by taxi that is located at Leverocks on the mainland (7090 Placida Rd Cape Haze FL) round trip is $6.00 per person. Be sure to bring your own dock lines when visiting Rum Bay.
Leverocks – Located at Palm Island Marina. If coming by boat it is located between Marker # 7/8, and the dock attendants will help you dock if you call on the VHF channel 16. If coming by car the 7092 Placida Rd. Cape Haze, FL
Waterside Grill – Located south of the Boca Grande Bridge at Gasparilla Marina. Plenty of dock space but be sure to have dock lines ready. If visiting by car 15001 Gasparilla Rd. Placida Fl, 33946
Lock N Key — Located on Beach Road with great views of Englewood beach and plenty of seating. They offer exceptional service and a variety of cuisines. 2045 N Beach Rd. Englewood FL 34223
Beach Road Wine Bar and Bistro — Come by boat or by car. There are over 70 wine selections and an array of beers. This restaurant is known for fusions style cuisine and creative dishes. Live entertainment is offered on a regular basis . Check them out on Wednesdays nights for certain selections of bottles of wine are sold at half price. 1350 Beach Rd. Englewood, FL 34223
HISTORY OF LEMON BAY
In 1926, Englewood FL was hit by a hurricane. Bert Anger purchased a portion of land on Lemon Bay and built a home near a protected area off of Lemon Bay. As Lemon Bay grew, Bert’s front porch became a gathering spot, therefore he started to market items. This business continued to grow until a fire in 1949. This is where the Englewood Fire Department was started. Bert rebuilt the houses that were lost and a store where True Value Hardware sits today. In 1990 a pharmacy was added which is now the rental portion of True Value Hardware.
With a growing family, Bert built smaller cottages for them as they grew around the main home. Many of those homes are still visible from the Marina.
In the early 1940’s, Bert had built small cottages and rented them to Fisherman. This started docking for small boats. By the early 1950’s, it became a working boat yard named Bert Angers Boat Way. Bert was always into buying and selling real-estate and the Boat Way Marina was sold. Over the years, the most notable owners include Del Branble of Englewood Boats and Motors, David Allen of the Boat Center, and Mark LaPrade of Thunder Marine.
Purchased in 2002, Thunder Marine and Service was conducted from the location. In 2004 Mark decided to completely refurbish the existing facility and add a new dry storage building. Under his development company, the name was changed from Thunder Marine to Harbor at Lemon Bay. Portions of the marina were offered as rackominuims along with leasing.
Today Harbor at Lemon Bay offers concierge service, call ahead launching, cleaning, fueling, along with mechanical service, fish cleaning station, showers, and work rack amenities. Indoor storage up to 42 feet and wet storage to 50 feet. Giving boaters the ultimate choice at the friendliest and cleanest facility around. Rated as one of the top 25 Marinas in the Tampa Bay Business Journal. Harbor at Lemon Bay will help with your every boating need. This year (2016) we are pleased to announce that we are introducing Carefree Boat Club of Englewood to our facility.
HISTORY OF BOCA GRANDE
Boca Grande in Spanish Means Big Mouth which came from the waterway at the southernmost tip called Boca Grande Pass. This waterway was used as a busy shipping area for loading processed phosphate via Charlotte Harbor and the Northern Railroad. The railroad was completed in 1907, not only did it bring phosphate, it also attracted wealthy people from the North to visit. The railroad continued to bring visitors to the island until the causeway was built in 1958. The phosphate port closed in 1979.
One of the iconic structures is the Range Light just south of First Street on the Gulf Side of the Island. Built in 1881 and used in Lewes, Delaware and was decommissioned in 1918. It was then moved by rail to Boca Grande and reassembled in 1927. The light was relit in 1932 and continues to remain in service.
Boca Grande Light House located at the very most southern tip was built in 1890 and is the oldest building on the Island. It is not a functioning Light house, but is now a museum opened to the public.
Tarpon Capital of the world has put Boca Grande on the map. People come from all over to participate in the fight of catching these magnificent “Silver King” fish. The pass becomes silver when these fish roll in the waves and boats flock to see. The tournaments usually occur around Mother’s Day. Tarpon will usually stay in the pass until late June. It’s a sight to see even from the beach.
This Island is great for exploring the Beautiful beaches to the huge Banyan trees that are over 100 years old. I suggest renting a golf cart or bicycle and take the day to shop, eat, and sight see.
Pink Elephant - Accessible by boat and by car, rave reviews on yelp and offers year round service.
Boca Grande Marina - Formerly known as Millers marine is accessible by water or by car. Offers to two dining rooms. Millers Dockside and Grill located downstairs next to the docks and Eagle Grill located upstairs for finer dining. They also have a ship store, golf cart, and bicycle rentals.
South Beach - Located on the very tip of the Island on the gulf side. Order your cocktail and walk down to the beautiful white sandy beach.
HISTORY OF CAYO COSTA STATE PARK
Located 4 Nautical miles west of Pine Island, Cayo Costa is one of the largest barrier Islands in Florida. It’s only accessible by boat and is served by private ferry from the nearby Pine Island. Before the arrival of Europeans more than 4,000 years ago. This Island served Native American Fishing cultures. Several of their shell mounds are still found on Cayo Costa which means “Key by the Coast”. In the early 1800’s Spanish fisherman from Cuba caught and dried fish that were then transported to Cuban markets. Approximately 20 fishing families lived on Cayo Costa where they established a school, a post office, and a grocery store in the early 1900’s. This island is great for fishing, swimming, snorkeling, sunbathing, and shelling. Also you may see pods of dolphin and manatee in the waters around this 2,426-acre park. There are nature trails that crisscross the island and provide hiking and off road bicycling. You can also rent cabins and tents for an overnight stay on the Island.
HISTORY OF CABBAGE KEY
Located on the Pine Island directly across from Marker #60. 20 miles NW of Ft. Myers and 5 miles south of Boca Grande. This beautiful untouched Island is 100 acres with a restaurant, Inn, and Cottages. The restaurant is famous for their Cheeseburgers and Walls made of Money. It’s tradition when you visit to stick a dollar on the wall. Explore this Island with it’s beautiful vegetation and its natural wilderness.
HISTORY OF VENICE
Venice was first settled in 1870 by Robert Rickford Roberts. He established 121-acre homestead on the south end of the bay which was named after him. Originally called “Horse and Chaise” because of the carriage like tree formation that marked the spot for fisherman. In 1888 the city received its official name by Frank Higel. It was named after the famous Canal City in Italy, Venice.
Snake Island. Small Island located at the mouth the Venice Inlet better known as the Venice Jetty. This little Island does not have restrooms, power, or running water. It’s so small you can probably throw a coconut across the to the other side with ease. However, this Island becomes a social hangout don’t be surprised if you find people camping out for the weekend. Contrary to its name it’s not infested with snakes.
Crow’s Nest - Located just inside the Venice Inlet accessible by boat or by car and is monitored by VHF channel 16
Pops Sunset Grill - Been in business for 30 years. Located on the ICW North of Albee Rd Bridge. If you come by car 112 Circuit Rd. Nokomis FL 34275
Marker 4 - Located on the ICW adjacent to Fishermans Wharf Marine. By car 509 Tamiami Tr. N Venice FL 34285
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With a Carefree Boat Club membership you get:
With membership as little as 1/3 cost of owning a boat, you can cross these expenses off your list: boat purchase, slip fee, insurance, maintenance, repairs, taxes, towing and winterization.
Use the boats as often as you would like with no additional cost.
Our online reservation system allows you to pick the day, time, boat and Carefree location...easily.
Large Variety of Boats
Varieties include 18'-27' Cruiser, Deck, Bowrider, Pontoon, Fishing, Ski and Sail Boats & more! Members have options in both type of boat and type of activity!
With low member to boat ratios, an easy to use online reservation system & spur of the moment walk-on access members can enjoy boating how they like when they like.
On The Water Instruction
Instructors at each location provide Boat Safety training and handling skills so our members can comfortably and safely enjoy the great variety of boats for all activities.