Papa Smurf

August 2013 Forum Member Spotlight

It's our honor to celebrate Papa Smurf a.k.a. Bob. He's such a blessing to our pontoon community because of his willingness to help out and his decades of boating experience. 

1. What kind of boat do you currently own?

My newest boat is a 2005 23' Bennington RFS 3 toon with performance package, Yamaha F-150 4 stk. Second is a 1966 19' Sea Ray I/O 888 Ford 302 V/8. Third is a 96 Yamaha 700 Wave Venture 81 hp. Four is a 1983 16' Hobie Cat sailboat. Last but not least is a 17' 1973 Grumman aluminum canoe powered by an 80-yr-old buzzard with a kid's brain.

2. What is your favorite thing about it? 

I can haul a football team, baseball team, 2 basketball teams and hordes of cute cheerleaders and it is quiet, smooth, fuel efficient, reliable, and fast when needed.

3. What is your dream boat? 

My dream boat would have been a 50' or 60' yacht, suitable for cruising the Caribbean a long time ago; but now what we have is fine for cruising into the forever!

4. Share a fun/exciting boating memory: 

This could take all day but I will spare you. We were towing our two grandsons from Utah, 4 & 7 year olds on a tube and the 7 year old was bouncing all over the place trying to scare the junior member. When crossing the wake junior(4) was catapulted into the air in a perfect backward flip. We quickly approached him to ensure his safety, and he, in his normal, 
unenthusiastic style stated "I think I should wait until I'm older before trying that again". Everyone in the boat almost fell overboard dying of laughter. 

5. What is the must have boating accessory? 

This is the easiest question of all, and the answer is obvious for a Virginia Gentleman. The "must have" accessory in boating is a beautiful First Mate like my wife, Ramona!! 

6. How long have you been boating? 

Seventy years ago when I was 10-years-old, our pastor, Ralph Bellwood, built a 12' wooden boat for me. He built it from a huge pine tree from our tobacco farm and hauled it to the saw mill by our mule team, Jim & Kate. He presented it to me as a gift. Shortly after, I bought a 5 hp Royal outboard motor with my share of the tobacco crop and savings from my job at an ESSO station. That love affair with boating has never dwindled or ended to this day. 

7. Where do you typically boat? 

Our boating, of all types, is enjoyed on Lake Martin Alabama since we bought a home there in 1982.

8. What part of the country has the best boating? 

I served in the USAF for 30 years and operated aircraft, including helicopters, in too many countries to list as many other forum members may have. Magnificent lakes, rivers, shores, etc wowed me but none have impressed me like Lake Martin. It is the cleanest, most accessible, most pleasant, and most friendly lake I have ever experienced, and mother nature kisses her gorgeous sunsets and sunrises like no other. We are hooked! 

9. Who would you like to nominate to be our next Forum Member Spotlight? 

Through this web site, I have grown to admire members never seen or personally met. So much was learned as a member of the forum, especially when purchasing my pontoon. Because I have not been as active as usual and so many new members have arrived, my judgment of who should be honored next makes me very uncomfortable. Please accept my apologies for declining the opportunity to do so.

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