This spring, Boston Whaler was proud to partner with SEAL Team Ocean Reef, which works with the Navy SEAL Museum to provide housing, family assistance, K9 companions, scholarships and more for the SEAL community. In support of the non-profit organization’s annual fundraising event, Whaler donated a boat to be raffled off, and hosted the event’s first-ever fishing tournament, dubbed the Boston Whaler Invitational.
“We were grateful to participate and show our support for the Navy SEAL community,” said Whaler President Nick Stickler. “It was an honor to be in the company of such amazing people. Our country’s veterans and service members are true heroes.”
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Over the years, SEAL Team Ocean Reef has grown and evolved; the event has become a multi-day experience. Attendees engage with the Navy SEALs through activities including a beach boot camp, veterans’ breakfast, VIP dinner, golf tournament, and “SEALs Up Close & Personal,” an impressive display of SEAL skills and expertise.
Guests of this year’s event included Medal of Honor recipient and SEAL Mike Thornton, as well as twenty SEALs and their families. More than 1200 visitors enjoyed SEALs Up Close & Personal, and 250 attended the VIP dinner.
The raffle of a Boston Whaler 130 Super Sport, featuring a one-of-a-kind Navy SEAL hull wrap (shown above), raised $40,000. Fifteen boats fished in the Boston Whaler Invitational, with each boat carrying SEALs and their family members. A team on 420 Outrage WHALER 1, helmed by Stickler and Boston Whaler’s Director of Large Boat Sales Wil Rogers, led the hunt for sailfish. Additional backing came from MarineMax Ocean Reef and its General Manager/Director of Sales Ken Reda, a longtime supporter of SEAL Team Ocean Reef.
“Everyone at Boston Whaler and MarineMax was wonderful and so very generous,” said John Lee, the event’s lead organizer. “Even beyond the incredible amount of money raised in the raffle, the goodwill from the SEAL logo on the boat is priceless. We’re proud to share in demonstrating our respect and love for all veterans for their service to our great country.”