Southwest Florida Yachts


The MGA of Boating

By Barb Hansen
February 2018

In my job, I’m privy to a lot of things. No, this is not an expose, but the sharing of a phenomenon I’ve borne witness to while arranging yacht charters and liveaboard courses for both power and sail cruisers. I call it the MGA of boating and I think it’s pretty cool.

Sorry, I know acronyms at times can be annoying. MGA stands for the Multi-Generational Aspect of boating. Over the last few years, the MGA of boating has really flourished, at least from my vantage point. We are seeing more and more grandparents taking their grandkids on charters or enrolling in classes with them.

This strongly suggests to me that grandparents are getting younger! My grandparents were wonderful people, but they
were not active in the way grandparents are today. They would have never gotten on a boat, much less taken their grandkids, including yours truly, on one.

I’ve talked to a number of grandparents about this growing phenomenon, and while they can’t pinpoint the reason why, they revel in every aspect of it from the time their grandkids enter this world right on into their teens and beyond. There’s been some speculation about a gene that seems to kick in when a grandchild enters the life of a grandparent, but I don’t know about that.

However, I do see and understand why parents are fully appreciative and supportive of the MGA of boating. Often they are totally wrapped up in their careers and are delighted when grandparents can take the kids for special trips on board or even learning how to cruise safely. Special times with special people in special places and no  worries since its grandma and grandpa. No wonder mom and dad support this type of MGA.

Many people who attend our boating school are winding up their careers and will soon have time to work through their “bucket list”. Cruising is on that list and I have heard many talk about cruising the “Great Loop,” the continuous waterway up the Atlantic Seaboard, across the Great Lakes, down the Mississippi and along the Gulf of Mexico. Think about doing that with the grandkids over a summer vacation? Heck, it would be fun, educational and the stuff of memories for decades to come. Mom and Dad may be able to hook up during selected “Looper” segments, too, adding even more to the experience.

That’s just one of many trips that MGA Boaters can plan and do – any of them putting quite a sparkle on the “Golden Years.”


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