East Coast Brewboat in Murrells Inlet offers boat pedaling experience with a beer

The East Coast BrewBoat, based at 4065 U.S. 17 Business, Murrells Inlet, next to Capt. Dave’s Dockside and Creek Ratz, already has created a buzz with its scenic pastime. Patrons on a one-hour, pontoon cruise along the marshwalk and in creeks, and pedal to turn the boat’s paddle. The vessel has 10 pedaling stations, with other seating for five more riders.

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Charlie and Chrissy Mize took the plunge to take delivery from a builder in Oregon of this vessel and christened their own public cruises and private charters in March.

It’s “100 percent green,” Charlie Mize said, citing the solar panels that charge batteries, for the stereo and lights, as well as an outboard motor, if the need for that amenity arises to finish a cruise.

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“We always say, how far south we go is up to you,” Mize said. “It can be as easy as you’d like, or as much of a workout, because we can control the resistance by how far we drop the paddle wheel in the water. One thing we will never have to worry about on the BrewBoat is hills.”

The record speed thus far, he said, hit about 8 mph, or 7 knots.

“It takes a lot of effort from everybody,” Mize said, “to get the boat moving that fast.”

Make reservations at 843-213-2610 or brewboatsc.com. Riders bring their own beverages and snacks, but coolers, ice and cups are furnished right in front of the pedaling station cluster. Mize also said to dress for bicycling, especially with steady footwear.

Vacationing last summer and pulling into Portland, Maine, the Mizes first saw such as boat in use.

“We thought,” Charlie Mize said, “that this would be perfect for Murrells Inlet, where we live.”

He said “every day is different” with the groups the Mizes – married for three years – have entertained. One couple tied the knot, Charlie Mize said, by heading up to the bow of the boat out in the inlet, for their ceremony with a friend who was newly ordained to officiate, then “we all celebrated” afterward. Two grandmothers on that cruise kept the boat moving with their cycling.

“They were the best pedalers on that cruise,” Mize said, counting about half the boat’s business as private bookings, also with birthday and bachelorette parties, and neighborhood get-togethers.

The Mizes already have hosted an office meeting, and such outings also can double as “team building” exercises, they said.

Wildlife viewing brings many bonuses, too, such as “some resident bald eagles pretty often” wowing cruise passengers, Charlie Mize said, also thrilled to see sea turtles, dolphins, “a stingray jumping out of the water” two weeks ago, dolphins, and a manatee who arrived in the inlet recently.

The pair, who “bike a lot” on two wheels, he said, also are expecting their firstborn this week, a boy, “so we’ll have another pedaler in the family.”

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