Oklahoma Marina | Casual Boater
OK we’re continuing on our series on the our Oklahoma Marina experience at Sky to gleich and we have been very. Very pleased obviously to say the least with the results of. That experience to. It has been a very time consuming process since we began the process in 2001 2002. I guess I had no idea. How extensive a like development whether you have an Oklahoma Marina or not you can probably relate to this. Development is very very slow. It’s got a lot of moving parts. But it’s my background was in trading energy trading. Is extremely fast paced. Every day you see the markets move dramatically up or dramatically down so you get a bit addicted to action. My life slowed down a bit after I did that for a number of years with Koch Industries when I decided to retire from that and get involved in government and public affairs. But even that with the legislative session things can move pretty quickly when you get into development you got tickly in this day and age and when you’re on like our Oklahoma Marina is on a core like you’ve got an awful lot of requirements to meet a lot of environmental. A lot of processes to go through. And so you find that. And I probably needed this lesson that you better be very very patient even if you’re doing private development. It’s going to take it’s going to be a slow process. So I have tried to learn to be a little bit patient. Not to try and control the clock because that’s really not going to do you much good. But we have stayed very aggressive from starting with that first Oklahoma marina at the harbor cross timbers. We have developed. Many many properties both on private land that adjoins our marina at our Oklahoma Marina sky and also many many pieces of development at our second project which is Keystone Harbor. They’re in the city of Manford on Keystone like. So if you want a lesson in patience I would say do real estate development. It will it will slow you down because you you cannot you can only push it so quickly. Weather comes into play as we’re seeing right now we’ve got here in April the wettest April on record. And accordingly at Keystone like we’re way up around the banks will probably be that way for the next week or 10 days. And we’re fortunate in that we’ve been able to do things that allow us to continue to operate it at very high water levels. But certainly right now will be shut down for the next series of days. That is for a high energy guy like me. Difficult because I’m used to getting out on the docks and we’re always working on a development project or adding more slips or whatever. All those things have to wait till the the light goes down. Similarly at Sky 2 we’re developing the village area now which adjoins our Oklahoma Marina. Sky Harbor. And that project we’re adding cottages and a wedding. Second Wedding Event Then you well with the like as high as it is and the land is wet and soft as it is. We’re going to be delayed in that. So it’s a great lesson in patience. When you’re when you’re in the development business on any like. Or probably even if you’re just a developer in town wet ground from excessive rainfall is something that you can’t do a thing of. You just have to let Mother Nature take its course and hope for windy days and sunshine and eventually it all dries out. So we get impatient but it teaches us patience. Hard lesson for me at 65 but I still keep trying to learn it. So after we got the cottages going we had one cottage site left there at our Oklahoma marina at Keystone Harbor and that that one it was very important to me because I was hearing so much about. The need for our heroes are our veterans to be able to get on the water. There’s nothing more therapeutic for any of us than being on the water. The sound of water being on the water is literally a part of our chemistry. And we all know that. And so as times get more and more stressful as technology runs out is faster and faster change comes at us. I’m not sure our systems have evolved as quickly as the technology has so the demand to be on water has never been greater whether to see it hear it touch it. That is a.. And the more stressed we get the more we we need that. Well no one has more stress pressure than our heroes and the the great folks that have suffered through war. Watch bodies be injured or killed perhaps be injured themselves. Really need the healing powers of water and that’s not just me saying it. There have been study after study one very recently from the Sierra Club has pointed out that the therapeutic healing to the psychology of a person by being on the water. So. In around 2011 2012 it became. Very very close to my my mind in my heart that we needed to do something further on the water to take this one last remaining cottage view that we had left on our Oklahoma Marina cottage development and provide it as a sanctuary for the great folks that have served us in Iraq and Afghanistan. And that’s what we did. We did all of this. Building a cottage that would accommodate folks that have severe disabilities from service to all of us and also a place for family members that have lost a loved one to be able to come and heal. The psychological benefits of water again are very very pronounced and the post-traumatic stress disorder is literally at epidemic. Stages right now in a 24 hour day about 22 of our heroes will take their own life. So. Having seen the studies knowing that former Vice President Cheney actually on the Snake River in Wyoming takes groups of folks with very very severe post-traumatic stress disorder and brings them along on fishing expeditions with other heroes and they the results have been amazing folks that have had tremendous difficulty dealing with their PTSD. Have seen a turnaround just from a multi day fishing excursion. So that healing therapeutic benefits of water. We wanted to put into place with a cottage that would be free use for those that meet the criteria of having been disabled whether psychologically or physically in one of these campaigns and or the family members of those that have lost a hero in one of those campaigns. Thanks to Hunter homes the folks that built heart are some of our cottages and built our ships door in our restaurant and our dock shop. Wonderful builders they took the lead and work with their industry their construction industry and the outpouring of support the gifting of materials the gifting of labor was tremendous. Americans will definitely come to the aid of one another and they certainly did on that so literally not one public dollar was spent all of this was with private investment entirely. And they undertook to build this cottage. Did build it. It was donated through folds of honor an organization located in a waltz Oklahoma that’s become nationally known you’ll see folds of honor on Fox and Friends they have a Nascar race now with quick trip. So these great folks decided that they would take the cottage and operated in terms of vetting folks that want to use it. They have a very very large clientele obviously of heroes because they give so many scholarships out. And so we decided that folds of honor would be the perfect. Place to go to see if they would like to operate this cottage which they agree obviously we’ve got the Corps of Engineers approval for it. And then amazingly a wonderful company that eventually bought our Oklahoma Marina Cross Timbers marina just a year or so ago they stepped up and made a contribution of $80000 to finish off that project. So it’s now known as a sun tax on her cottage operated by the folds of honor. Susan Erler has been a wonderful coordinator of the use of that cottage in the maintenance of it. It is a beautiful three bedroom two bath cottage that has house 10 and 12 people very comfortably at times beautiful deck overlooking the like just been a very very rewarding project. So again our thanks to the Corps two folds of honor. And most importantly to son tax for their generosity in making that happen and the dozens of contractors and suppliers that made that beautiful cottage happen. We’ll talk about it more in ensuing sessions.