It is perhaps never too early to be thinking about spring, especially spring in Clear Lake.
That is particularly true this long, cold winter. But never fear — we have the perfect recipe to start dreaming of warm water and sunny days spent cruising on the Lady of the Lake.
For now, the Lady remains safely tucked away in her winter home at PM Park, according to Capt. Roger Nordman. But they already have their first event booked for the coming season.
“We actually have a graduation on the Lady early in May, but we’re not going out, it will be on the dock,” says Nordman. “We start cruises Memorial Day weekend.”
Nordman and his wife, Dotty, own the Lady of the Lake with another couple, Mike and Marlene Royer. Together, they are the thirds owners since the boat came to town.
It hardly seems possible that the Lady is closing in on 30 years of service here — and she looks pretty fine for a gal in her 50s.
“She was built in 1960 in Dubuque by the Dubuque Boiler Works,” notes Nordman. “She was built as a ferry boat and worked on the Missouri River west of Yankton, S.D., from 1960 to 1987.”
As a flatbed ferry, the Lady was a working boat moving cars and cargo across the Missouri River. Her “golden years” in Clear Lake have given her a chance to spin that paddle wheel and have some fun.
“We always say that we have the second biggest dance floor in Clear Lake, second only to The Surf,” Nordman says.
It continues to amaze him how the Lady draws visitors from near and far.
“We have people from all over the world,” he says. “It’s just amazing the people we meet on there.”
But even after all these years in Clear Lake, there’s still a few local folks who haven’t taken a cruise.
“We get that all the time,” he says. “People will say they’ve lived in town for 15 yeas and never been on it.”
For those remaining who have missed it, the 2014 season is coming soon.
“You can’t get the real Clear Lake experience unless you’re on the water, and there’s no better way to be on the water than on the Lady of the Lake,” Nordman concludes.
Contact Darren at 953-4822 ext. 304 or firstname.lastname@example.org to recommend someone for an upcoming issue of “What’s In Your Garage?”