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Handcrafted: Moonlight Marine, Inc.

Photo courtesy Moonlight Marine, Inc.
Photo courtesy Moonlight Marine, Inc.

Every local business has a story worth sharing with the community.

And that’s the belief behind this new, exciting series we’re kicking off at Patch—to shine the spotlight on all our favorite local businesses, and to learn a little about the ones we may not know that well.

This is as much about supporting local businesses as it is about celebrating the places and faces that make our community special.

We’ve created a simple form where local business owners can answer a few quick questions. 

Our spotlight today is on Daniel Thaler's boat-building business.

Business: Moonlight Marine, Inc.
Owner: Daniel Thaler
Address: Shrub Oak, NY

How did you come up with the name?
First, because at this point it is my secondary business, and second, thirty-five years ago when I was transitioning to my current day job I had a small business called Moonlight Motors.

Why choose that location? Why start a business in this town?
I have a shop set up in my house.

Briefly, what business are you in?
I build custom wood kayaks and canoes

What's the most difficult moment or challenge you've faced as a business owner?
One of the big challenges is educating folks that wooden kayaks and canoes are just as strong and durable as the store bought models.

Were there any challenges that made you second guess your decision to be an entrepreneur?
Working two jobs can be tiring, but also fun.

What's been your favorite moment or proudest achievement since opening?
My boats have won awards three years in a row at Chesapeake Light Craft's annual event, Okoumefest.

What's the most innovative idea your employees or customers have had that you put into practice?
At this point the only employee is myself. I try hard to keep my overhead low and use social media to spread the word.

How do you deal with difficult customers?
So far all my customers have been great. My policy is to do the best possible work and communicate regularly with the client through the building process.

How does your business give back or get involved in the community?
I am a member of the Yorktown Small Business Association and the Yonkers Paddling and Rowing Club. I am on the board of the Hudson River Watertrail Association and was a board member of the Shrub Oak Park Community Association for 26 years.

Dan Thaler May 26, 2014 at 09:17 AM
My Shearwater 17 Hybrid won Best-In-Show at Chesapeake Light Craft's Okoumefest last weekend. Click here and scroll to the bottom for the whole story. http://www.clcboats.com/boatbuilding-news-events/okoumefest-small-craft-festival-2014-part3.html


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