McGregor council, dock commission support Maiden Voyage catering boat

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By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

At its April 20 meeting, the McGregor Council approved the dock commission’s recommendation to allow Robert Vavra, captain of Maiden Voyage Tours, to lease a space for a catering boat by the city docks.

Vavra, now in his 10th year in the business and sixth year in McGregor, said he’s looking to establish a physical presence in McGregor when his boat is not there.

He said he plans to use the boat for storage and to prepare food for his catered tours. The catering will be for his Maiden Voyage tours only, not the public. Vavra also plans to sell hats, trinkets and other souvenirs out of the space and will include a spot for brochures. In addition, it will be a loading area for his passengers.

The space will be leased at the same rental fee per foot as other spaces in the city docking area. The boat will be docked adjacent to the shoreline, on the inside of the public dock location, and will not take up any public docking space. Vavra will bear the cost of putting in electrical to the boat.

“It’s basically going to be another house boat,” Vavra explained. “It will give me a secure loading place I can count on and more space for others.”

Cathy Corpian, chairperson of the dock commission, said, in a letter to the council, that she and other dock commission members were impressed with the structure and the time and effort Vavra has put into it.

“It shouldn’t infringe on other riverfront businesses because it is what he is already doing on his cruises, but now on shore,” she said, adding that the boat should also not obstruct the riverfront view.

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