A Final Farewell for the Lady Anderson - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

A Final Farewell for the Lady Anderson

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The Lady Anderson dinner cruise and popular landmark will be saying bon voyage to the Panhandle at the end of September.

It's bitter sweet moment for the Anderson family who owns the popular ship.

They made the tough decision to discontinue the cruises and sell the ship, so they would have more time to focus on family and the other boats on the marina.

They currently operate deep sea fishing boats, charters boats and Shell Island cruises.

They hope to add more boats to their fleet in the next year.

"We've had a good 40 years and we feel like this is a good time to go ahead and close this chapter," said Suzie Anderson Cox, General Manager.

"Our first dinner cruise was September 25th or 269th 1973, so we're are going to take it to up to September 26th 2013.. Make it an even 40 years and call it a day."

The current ship was designed by Captain Ken Anderson in 1993 to replace a smaller boat that his father designed in the 70s. He named it the Lady Anderson in honor of his mother.

The new owner of the vessel is taking the boat to the New England area and has plans to continue to use it as a dinner cruise ship.

The Anderson family is confident that the buyer will continue down the right path for the ship.

"We definitely don't want anyone to think this is a spur of the moment," said Cox. "We have prayed about it for a while and we have had probably 4 or 5 potential buyers over the years, but this one just feels like a good fit and we feel confident that they are going to have the same values as we have. We've met with them several times and we are very comfortable with the folks that will be taking over for us and moving it to New England."

The family is very thankful for the crew and the customers that have made the last 40 years so special. They urge everyone to keep an eye on their Facebook page and Web site for information leading up the ship's final voyage.

The changes at the marina will not affect the Captain Anderson's restaurant.