A perfect day on the lake beckons—blue water, blue sky and endless hours of complete joy.
Then real life hits. Hours of carefree joy are slowly whittled away by the reality of boat ownership. The boat needs to be hauled out of storage, maintained, the tank filled, loaded with equipment, brought to the launch and maneuvered into the water.
However, that all might be changing. The old sayings “the word boat means Break Out Another Thousand” and “the two best days in a boat owner’s life are the day they buy a boat and the day they sell it” just might not be relevant any more.
Hoping to eliminate the negatives associated with boating, Peter Meiusi and Travis Andregg have brought what they call “hassle-free boating” to the Kansas City area at the No Coast Boat Club of Lake Perry in Perry, Kansas, and Clinton Lake in Lawrence.
“We want to maximize the fun,” Meiusi says of why he and Andregg started the area’s first boat subscription service. There are hundreds of boat clubs across the country, mostly on the coasts, and there are a few already in Missouri, such as Freedom Boat Club at Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake and St. Charles. But there are none in the greater Kansas City area, despite a population of about 2.2 million people and ample lakes.
“My wife and I moved here from Seattle in 2020, and I was used to boat clubs that provided everything you needed for a day on the water,” Meiusi says.
Boat clubs are different from renting a boat for the day. Daily boat rental facilities are often only found in tourist spots where the boats are being used for a one-time adventure and don’t usually come with extra perks. Boat clubs, on the other hand, have a fleet of well-maintained boats to choose from and other amenities with none of the hassle.
“We take care of the storage, the insurance, all the updates, fishing licenses and bait, the water toys—you can just call us and say you want a case of beer and a pizza on board, and we’ll take care of it,” Meiusi says. “The boat will be cleaned, fueled and detailed so that you have a great day on the lake. And then you just hand us the keys when you’re done.
Meiusi and Andregg have twenty-four years of marine experience between them and fully understand the difficulties of boat ownership.
“With so many beautiful lakes close by, we realized how perfectly boat clubs would fit into people’s lifestyles here,” Andregg, a Lawrence native, says.
The No Coast Boat Club offers a fleet with the latest models, such as a 2023 Heyday H22 for water skiing, a 2022 Trifecta TRFC 24 LE for sport fishing and a 2023 Catalina Avalon Funship Pontoon.
“The Funship has an upper deck with a waterslide,” Meiusi says. “Parents can anchor in a cove and let the kids have a blast on the waterslide and then go out on the lake and tow them around in a tube.”
Reciprocal use at other lakes is included in a membership. The Hillsdale Lake Club is coming soon, and Andregg and Meiusi expect to have clubs at Table Rock and the Lake of the Ozarks in three to five years.
“We have a member-to-boat ratio that is about thirty percent lower than the national average so that guests can have the dates they request, especially every major summer holiday weekend,” Meiusi says.
The club emphasizes safety, and anyone who needs instruction in driving boats can take a training and orientation course. Members must always designate a “sober skipper,” and the club has a strict no-drug policy. The club’s website, nocoastboatclub.com, also states that, for safety reasons, dogs are welcome but no alligators or peacocks are allowed to ride in the boats.
“Our customer base includes families, retirees and young professionals,” Meiusi says. “We are having an open house at Lake Perry on May 19 and one at Clinton Lake on June 6 to celebrate the beginning of the boating season.”
Another Clinton Lake perk in mid-May is a floating patio. The patio is a University of Kansas School of Architecture student project led by Professor Nils Gore. Meiusi says, “It will be a great place for people to enjoy live music and other entertainment.”