Issue: August 2008
MARINA HOPPING: Getaway 'Round the Corner

A trip to White Point Marina on the Yeocomico River proves you don't have to go far to get away from it all.

by Jody Argo Schroath
photography by Tamzin B. Smith

A recent trip to White Point Marina on the Yeocomico River in Virginia has given me a new view of vacation getaways, which goes something like: It's not the number of miles you go to get away, it's the degree of difference between what you've left and what you find when you get there that counts. Using
my new theory, White Point Marina is approximately the equivalent of a trip to Saint-Tropez.

This is the way it happened. For two lethally hot days in June I had been working on my sailboat, trying desperately to get it ready for the summer boating season. I was hot, dirty, sweaty and in not very good humor. The dog had even abandoned ship and was simply standing shoulder deep in the water, not moving. About mid-afternoon of the second day, I looked up when I heard a powerboat idling close to the slip and saw good friends Hal and Kathy Slack aboard their 17-foot cuddy.

"Jump in," they said, "We're taking you on a vacation." You don't have to ask me twice. I whistled for Skippy, tossed his life jacket into the boat and off we went. "Where are we going?" I asked. "You'll see." We picked up speed as we headed north out of the South Yeocomico River, past Mundy Point, and into the main river. Instead of turning east and into the Potomac--which is how all trips start around here--we kept north and entered the Shannon Branch, sometimes called the Northwest Yeocomico River. We slowed as we passed White Point and, just as the Bevans oyster plant came into view, cut to port toward White Point Creek. Two minutes later, Hal brought the boat smoothly against the pier of an empty slip. "Here we are," he said. Total time of trip: 10 minutes.

We scrambled up onto the dock and walked toward the swimming pool, feeling like Dorothy and Toto in Oz (well, I did, anyway). Everything was so green and shady and cool and clean and, well, operational. Yes, my friends had brought me on a vacation to White Point Marina. We poked into the ship's store, which must be the best equipped this side of the West Marines in Deltaville, Va., more than an hour's drive away. We loved the showers, impeccably clean and deliciously cool. We reveled in the pool, which sits on a gentle rise above the docks, so that you can look out over the river as you bob happily in the water. Later, I walked the docks and the covered slips. I marveled at the beautifully kept boats, some new, some wooden classics. I poked my head into the large work shed and its 60-ton marine railway, clearly still very much in regular use. Even the work shed looked spotless to me. I was most certainly in Oz. I found Hal and Kathy sitting under the trees, with Skippy sound asleep at their feet. "Thanks for a great vacation," I said.