The West Michigan Offshore annual business meeting and season kick-off party is coming up this Saturday and the WMO board members welcome both members and non-members to the attend the free event at Boatwerks Waterfront Restaurant in Holland, Mich.

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Boatwerks in Holland, Mich., is going to host the WMO season kick-off party this weekend. Photo by Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

According to Chris Dekker, board president of WMO, the first hour of the meeting isn’t the most exciting as it covers the club finances, policies, leadership structure, upcoming events, charitable giving and more. He said the charity announcement is the best part as a member of the Make-A-Wish Foundation gives a presentation with a Wish family on hand and allows the children to share their stories, which of course helps the club members become united around a great cause.

wmokickoff18b“We’ve raised nearly $40,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation during the last couple of years—and we're doing our first-ever silent auction on Saturday night with 100 percent of the proceeds going to the foundation,” said Dekker, who is pictured at right in the inset photo (click to enlarge). “Corey Hoff, the club’s vice president, has done an amazing job in lining up great items that will be up for bid. These include a ride in Low Altitude, club member Tom Borisch's 50-foot turbine-powered Mystic Powerboats cat, underwater LEDs from Lumitec, cool apparel from Mystic, OffshoreOnly and BBlades, cleaners from club sponsor Bio-Kleen, and too many others to mention. We’re looking to raise a minimum of $6,000 that evening, and hoping for much more.”

The event runs from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., and features the silent auction intertwined with the party in Boatwerks’ large banquet center, which includes music, free hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar. Low Altitude will be parked on a tilt trailer outside the venue too, according to Dekker. He said that every year, “a couple of our nut-case members attend by boat, which is pretty impressive considering it's April in Michigan!”

“For me it just so cool to see the community come together around such a great cause in the Make-A-Wish during this event,” Dekker said. “Even companies outside of West Michigan have stepped up to the plate to donate prizes for the auction. I think that just goes to show you that although offshore boating is what WMO is known for, charitable giving is really what brings the club together.” 

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