The Boat Country has moved to Ripon from Escalon.
Brent Lemcke, his wife Jennifer and their two sons Broden, 10, and Cole, 9 are the heart of the operation with Jennifer filling the demands of a bookkeeper. The boys handle odd jobs around the business as needed.
Lemcke first worked for the boat firm in Escalon right out of school. He started buying it in 2006. After taking it over he decided to move to Ripon where the drive by traffic on the freeway was a 10-fold increase. Boat Country is now in a new 21,000-square- foot building.
Lemcke said he worked with Ripon Planning Director Ken Zuidervaart and “felt we had a good fit.” He added, “The city was really good in working with the development of our site – it went very smoothly.”
“Our specialty is offering our customers custom options and focusing on selling boats,” he explained.
He recalled that he had wanted to become an engineer when he first registered at Modesto Junior College but soon switched to business administration after graduating from Beyer High School in Modesto.
His wife Jennifer graduated from Turlock Christian High School.
“We primarily sell wake board and surf boats and aluminum fishing boats,” he said. “The water sports boats we have are Supra and Moomba and the fishing boats are North River, Heweescraft and Crestliners.”
Lemcke said they normally have 40 to 60 boats at their facility – parked inside and out – for their customers to inspect. He noted that their young sons have both been taught how to surf behind a boat both on Don Pedro Reservoir and in the Delta. He proudly added that both of their boys have recently caught their first salmon and love to fish for bass and stripers adding they like to ride to Roseburg, Oregon with him when he picks up boats at a factory there.