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A Radical Transformation

Hidden Harbour Marina honored as Clean Marina of the Year

Chesapeake Country has hundreds of marinas, each unique in its own way. They come in different sizes, different locations, different facilities — and different levels of cleanliness and Bay friendliness.
    About one-quarter of Maryland’s 600-some marinas have adopted pollution prevention practices and meet the regulatory requirements to fly the flag of Clean Marina. Standards include overall cleanliness; compliance with regulations and best practices for servicing boats; environmental services (like pump-outs, recycling facilities and pet waste stations); and communicating and enforcing clean marina practices.
    Four each year — large boatyard and small boatyard, large marina and small marina — earn a higher honor: Clean Marina of the Year is awarded in four categories: Hidden Harbour was 2014’s small boatyard winner.
    “This is a great accomplishment due to the fact that this place was so horrible a year ago,” says marina manager Melissa Clark.
    Hidden Harbour’s turnaround was a fast act to follow. Within seven months of purchasing the former Gates Marina, Jim and Vicki Weaver, of Weaver’s Boat Works, also of Deale, had cleaned up a mess. The crushed remains of derelict boats filled 11 dumpsters. Docks and slips were rebuilt and grounds landscaped. The capstone of their efforts was the coveted Maryland Clean Marina certification.
    In January of 2014, improvements began. By April of that year, they were certified to begin their first season as a Clean Marina.
    As new manager, Clark set her goal a notch higher: Clean Marina of the Year. Ambition and the marina’s earlier success story did the trick.
    “Hidden Harbour Marina is the kind of success story we look for,” says Donna Morrow, the program manager for DNR. “The owners, managers and staff took an old facility that had been neglected for years and totally turned it around.”
    For marinas, Clean Marina status involves work, expense and vigilance. For boaters, it’s easier. Find your clean marina at http://dnr2.maryland.gov/boating/Pages/cleanmarina/cleanmarinas.aspx.