Like so many ideas for local businesses, John Everitt of Brookhaven “thought it would be fun.”
In this case, fun to open up access to the bays to anyone with a few friends looking to have a great time.
It’s not about getting anywhere, as with a ferry.
Aboard Salt Talk, just being out on the water is enough.
“We do fishing,” said Everitt, also a high school sailing coach. “I’m not broadcasting that I’m some expert fisherman, but I do have all the permits, so if there’s a group of people who want to go fishing, we can make that happen too.”
Everitt is just wrapping up his first summer running Salt Talk, during which time he ran moonlight cruises, a fireworks-watching night, a Cherry Grove trip and, more recently, a night for photographers with the Long Island Sun Chasers club.
Sun Chasers member Trish Minogue Collins of Mastic said it was a “gorgeous night on the bay” for the group.
“We all came packing with camera equipment, tripods, beach bags,” she said. “They cheerfully helped us all on and off the boat. We had a smooth and extremely pleasant ride.”
She also enjoyed her captain-guided tour.
“He allowed me to come into the cabin to check out the mix of old and new in that beautiful boat,” she said.
As for that boat, Salt Talk was built in 1960 as a charter fishing vessel, Everitt said. It’s extremely flat under the water line so doesn’t draw much. It’s 17 feet wide and 55 feet long with a walk-around wheelhouse.
“It’s built to carry a payload in shallow water, really,” says Everitt. “I call it a cross between a clam boat and a Mack truck.”
His crew consists of all local guys: Drew Carleton of Bellport, Eric Gerard and Rob Ficken.
At the moment, Everitt says he’s “a man without a country.”
He keeps Salt Talk docked off private property on Bay Road in Brookhaven and will make tailored arrangement over the phone for those looking to take a private cruise. He’s looking for a permanent location somewhere in the Bellport or Patchogue areas.
Everitt purchased the boat in Fortescue, N.J, where it was being used strictly for charter fishing.
He’s now trying to forge a new future for Salt Talk, and himself.
“When I was a kid, the myth was to go out and become a doctor or a lawyer, but that’s a bunch of crap,” says Everitt. “You can be a surfer, a sailer, you can work on boats, or you can run around all day taking pictures and writing stories.
“It’s a beautiful wide world out there,” he added. “Don’t be afraid of it; embrace it.”
below photos by Mike Busch/Greaterfireisland.com photo editor