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A Year of the Pier

The Goodspeed Family Pier passes its anniversary (-ish).

John Allen
August 12, 2014

Photo by Jeff Miller, University Communications

After its grand opening on June 27, 2013, the Goodspeed family Pier quickly became a beloved part of the lakeshore — an instant tradition for students and visitors. In case you haven’t had the chance to come to Madison and join the pier party, here are a few of the facts you should know.

Meter Reader
$1.50: that’s what it costs to park a boat for 30 minutes on one of the pier’s slips. The parking meter was installed on May 23, and in its first 70 days, it had collected $1,910.20 in fees. That’s 636 hours and 40 minutes of boat parking (or 9 hours of occupancy per day) — plus a random 20 cents. We don’t know where those two dimes came from.

No Waiting — Except for Canoes
The pier has dockage for 17 sailboats and motorboats, so there’s usually an open spot. There are also slips for 8 canoes and kayaks — usually. In June, Madison suffered a series of severe thunderstorms, and the canoe and kayak section of the pier was damaged. It disappeared for about 6 weeks to undergo repairs.

Sun Spots
All together, the pier adds 5,125 square feet of lakefront boardwalk, which students have found to be ideal for sunbathing. At a generous 18 square feet per sunbather, the Goodspeed Family Pier can accommodate 285 barely clad undergrads (though on any given summer day, there are seldom more than 284).

Whatever Floats Your Boat
15: that’s the total number of passengers who will fit on the new pontoon boat that the Wisconsin Alumni Association acquired in July 2014 (16 if one of them is waterskiing). The as-yet-unnamed craft — a twenty-five-foot Harris FloteBote 240 Cruiser — is a gift from several members of the WAA board.

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