Buying Old Boat Shops As Art. Yup, It’s Officially A Trend


There is a saying in the PR world. 1 is a fun story, 2 is a coincidence and 3 is a trend. Well, with yesterday’s text message news, fellow Woody Boaters Paul and Karen Harrison and Tom Drozd  bought the old Antique Boat Center property in Eustis yesterday, complete with the super cool old 1907 shop.

As you may recall this space has been an amazing gathering space for us all at the Lake Dora event. It’s amazing. Story links at the end of the story. The interesting part of this, is.. are old boat marinas and shops becoming art. As in, they are being purchased not to make money but be kept alive and something to look at, feel, and be part of. ART!

Robert Murdocks Marina Project

We now have 3. Robert Murdock up in did it first, then Woody Boater HQ with the Railway and now this in Fla. Has our passion for boats gone crazy? Or is this a natural progression of our community. In the car community, we see old Gas Stations and Car dealerships in rural areas being purchased for the same reason. Should we now have a website or community of boat shop marina owners that are art? BTW, Not Molly O Art.  So it’s now officially Official. IT’S A TREND! And Robert, Paul, Karen, Tom and yes ME! Are now Trendy people. Yup.. Trendy! Instagram Babes, eat our old crusty shorts. WE ARE THE TRENDY ONES! Now get out of my way. I have trash to take to the dump.


Inside the Eustis Shop from the Welcome party back in the day


18 replies
  1. Greg Lewandowski
    Greg Lewandowski says:

    Congrats to Paul and Karen and Tom. Great to see it stay as is and not get turned into a condo!

  2. Mark in Ohio (sometimes da U P)
    Mark in Ohio (sometimes da U P) says:

    Congratulations Karen, Paul, and Tom. Like Greg said. Im glad to see it didn’t get turned into a condo complex. If I ever get to Dora (and I plan to) I will visit this cool place.

  3. Murdock
    Murdock says:

    Karen, Paul and Tom: Welcome to the Club!!!!
    Matt and I now have a quorum and we can all apply for a group rate at some famous therapist’s group home. All Woodyboaters are of course welcome to join us at Happy Hour!
    We step up and do these things because, well, we have to. In our ADD brains, we justify it easily because it goes way beyond a hobby. It’s a passion, it’s the desire and heaven help me, after seven day, 15-18 hour days since the first of May, it’s all we know and we want more people to get caught up in our enthusiasm.
    And, above all, we wish to save a slice of history and recognize all that was good once upon a time.
    So here’s to you three with heartfelt congratulations for keeping alive another little corner of our woody world.
    Can’t wait to visit soon!!!

  4. Tom Drozd
    Tom Drozd says:

    Sure glad my wife Georgia doesn’t read Woody Boater. She’s my partner along with Karen and Paul.

    Looking forward to it all.

  5. Dick Dow
    Dick Dow says:

    Great news! The shop is in good hands and I look forward to seeing it again before long. Thank you Paul, Karen and Tom. 😊

  6. Art
    Art says:

    Congratulations Karen, Paul, and Tom it is great to see “other” Artists at work.

    Molly-O’s Art work has mostly been done in Arts Barn………so does it qualify as a group therapist’s home?

  7. John F Rothert
    John F Rothert says:

    Great work Paul and Karen…now get an auto repair and trailer fix it place…and never be on the side of the road in your usual position ever again!


    John in Va. just back from Going Boating on a beautiful weekend in Va!!!

  8. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    Thanks for “saving” that shop. I’ve longed for something like that for years, even a steel carport shed, well, a little more than a shed, you know 32′ x 56′ is a start. But that place has so much character with a raised floor to get cooling breezes under the floor (well, a breeze anyway) and that beautiful arched trust framed ceiling. I wonder if they ever got my drool marks off the wood floor.

  9. Ronald
    Ronald says:

    Congratulations. This is great news. I have been there many times in the past while at Mt Dora. This is one cool historical shop. I’ve often wondered what happened to it after it was closed after the new ownership took over.

    • George Balaschak
      George Balaschak says:

      Congratulations to the new owners, it is a great place. We had our 22′ Greavette Streamliner restored there when Richard and Cathy Arnold were the owners. It is shown up against the building in the first photo and her transom as Classy Lady in the second photo. She is now “Synergy” and has been at the Sunnyland Show and on the St Johns River cruise many times. Attached is another shot taken that day.

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