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Jiggs Landing Outpost cuts its hours for the summer

While the park concessions will be closed Mondays through Wednesdays, rentals will continue to be available online.


A crowd watches a local band on the stage at Jiggs Landing.
A crowd watches a local band on the stage at Jiggs Landing.
Courtesy image
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In the evenings at Jiggs Landing, a crowd of about 30 people regularly crowd around the small stage that hosts local bands as sunset falls over the Evers Reservoir.

Since last October, though, that has been the only crowd that Jiggs Landing Outpost owner Denise Kleiner has been able to count on.

Kleiner, who has operated the concessions at Jiggs Landing since 2019, has seen a decline in those using the concessions the past nine months, and she said she can't figure out any reason.

This week, Kleiner announced that the Outpost would be closed Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays through the end of September.

She stressed that even on the days the Outpost is closed, those who so desire can still book or rent a cabin, book a tour, or rent a boat. Accommodations for bookings will be taken as an online service (JiggsLanding.com) and the Outpost will have employees on call when needed.

The Manatee County park and the boat ramp will continue to be open every day from sunrise to sunset. A nighttime access card to the boat ramp is available for $30.

The new store hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Live music will continue to be featured Thursday through Sunday from 5-8 p.m.

The park, 6106 63rd St. E., offers freshwater fishing, canoeing, kayaking and other boating opportunities on the Evers Reservoir and the Braden River. The park also features picnic areas and a large pavilion that is available to rent.

Kleiner said the slide in business began last October.

"In October, November and December, we were off 10% (in sales)," Kleiner said. "In January, February and March were were down 15%, and then in May we were down 30%."

Although Kleiner kept her concession manager, assistant manager and employees, she had to cut back hours.

She said she will continue to experiment with attractions. The Outpost is offering an Alligator Tour from Wednesdays through Sundays at 8:30 p.m. Part of the tour will be a night trip to Bird Island.

"It's magical out there at night," Kleiner said. "You hear everything."

She said a skeleton staff managing the Outpost Monday-Wednesday during the mornings will be able to sell bait if fishermen need it. She said they have considered starting a kids' fishing clinic or individual fishing lessons if anyone is interested.

Kleiner said if any groups want to rent kayaks or canoes, or take a tour on a day when the concessions are closed, accommodations can be made.

The Outpost plans to be open seven days a week again in October.

 

author

Jay Heater

Jay Heater is the managing editor of the East County Observer. Overall, he has been in the business more than 41 years, 26 spent at the Contra Costa Times in the San Francisco Bay area as a sportswriter covering college football and basketball, boxing and horse racing.

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