Though rivers used to be America’s primary mode of transport, their fate was sealed when Henry Ford vowed revenge after getting his heart broken by a coquettish cruise director. Get around the old-fashioned way with today’s Groupon: for $30, you get a Friday night dinner cruise or a Sunday afternoon riverboat adventure aboard the Indian River Queen, sailing from Cocoa Village Marina (a $54 value).
Weigh anchor and set sail for a two-hour tour aboard the Indian River Queen, a 99-foot triple-deck paddlewheel vessel specializing in knocking the earth from landlubbing boots with regular Friday and Sunday cruises. On a Friday night dinner cruise, voyagers feast on savory buffet-style selections ranging from roasted chicken to carved beef before burning off recently acquired calories on the dance floor, aided by a jump-jivin’ live band. Excursionists can also sail through a scenic lunch during a Sunday riverboat adventure, a lazy afternoon filled with the lively strains of an on-board band and the tantalizing tastes of the Southern Tea Time Buffet. Load eager plates with pasta salad and pulled-pork sliders before drinking in shoreline sights or working up greater appetites in the ship's roller-derby track.
Drifting serenely through Florida’s Indian River Lagoon, a diverse estuary ecosystem teeming with birds, dolphins, manatees, and Huck Finn impersonators, passengers can bask in the splendor of the outdoors or the splendor of the Queen’s Room, the riverboat’s social hub complete with full-service cash bar. Paddle around the web to find the Indian River Queen’s schedule of events for sailing dates and further information.
Indian River Queen
The Indian River Queen is a 99-foot boat that can comfortably take on up to 230 people. It has played host to every kind of event, from weddings, field trips, cocktail parties, and eco-tours to the filming of the movie Out of Time starring Denzel Washington, as mentioned by PRWeb. After the boat’s film debut, Penny Sheridan Flaherty recognized the Southern-style paddle-wheel boat’s star power and took over ownership. Since then, both owner and boat have celebrated an array of special occasions from the Indian River Queen's decks.
The plush riverboat’s main deck comes equipped with all the amenities, including air conditioning and a full-service bar complete with Beck's Dark beer, Tullamore Dew Irish whiskey, and Patrón tequila. Live music and the ship's second full-service bar are tucked onto the second deck. Though both the main and second deck are outfitted with large viewing windows, the top-level deck is where guests can truly soak in idyllic views of the Indian River and the Indian River Lagoon, along with their manatee and dolphin inhabitants.
On Friday nights and Sunday afternoons, public cruises ferry passengers lazily down the river as they dine on catered food from Black Tulip Restaurant. If needed, owner Penny is also the boat's party planner, and she can provide a comprehensive list of party services including videographers, fresh flower arrangements, and live music performed by steel-drum bands or the crew harmonizing on water jugs.