Safe Harbor Aqua Yacht Marina Seeks to Go The Extra River Mile in Green Efforts


Safe Harbor Aqua Yacht Marina is a sponsor for the 2019 Pickwick Lake Cleanup. We caught up with Rodney Vanhoose, General Manager, to find out why Safe Harbor chose to make an investment in the Tennessee River.

Tell us about Safe Harbor.

Safe Harbor is the world’s largest owner of marinas with about 80 marina properties from the east to the west coast (and growing). Our marina, Safe Harbor Aqua Yacht Marina, is one of the larger marinas on the river system.

The river’s health is vital to our business and way of life. Our parent company has hired two environmental consulting firms to make sure that we are environmentally responsible and doing the right thing. Our goal is to exceed federal environmental expectations.

How long have you been at the marina on Pickwick?

I’ve been here at Aqua Yacht Marina for 27 years. I’ve lived in Hardin County my whole life and it’s a great place to live and work. I didn’t make plans to stay here my whole life, but I guess I just can’t keep away from the lake. It’s home.

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Why did you choose to invest in Keep the Tennessee River Beautiful’s Pickwick Lake Cleanup?

I didn’t realize just how many people would come out to the cleanup at our lake until I saw it for myself the last couple of years. It was great to see the big turnout—to know that so many people understand the value of our river and have a passion to preserve its beauty.

We have our staff go out and participate in the cleanup each year. It obviously is important to us to keep the marina area and lake in general as clean as possible. It’s not just a good thing to do. It’s about safety and this cleanup tradition will help to keep our lake clean and looking good for generations to come.

What’s your favorite thing about Pickwick Lake personally?

I guess we take for granted how beautiful the lake is, and the fact that we live where other people come to vacation. I guess you could say we’re on permanent vacation! Even when I’m on land, I drive over the dam and enjoy that beautiful view on a regular basis. Not everyone gets a view like that every day.

What advice do you have to boaters and visitors to any part of the Tennessee River?

I would just encourage everyone to do the best they can to keep trash bags in their boats so that it stays in the boat.

We offer free pump out and we encourage people to take advantage of it so that the sewage goes where it’s supposed to. We also hope people use our recycling bins stationed on each of our piers. I just hope everyone strives to be good environmental stewards so that we can all enjoy Pickwick Lake and its beauty.

To learn more about Safe Harbor Aqua Yacht Marina, visit