"Owned and Operated by Two Local Families"
Capt. Anderson’s Marina is owned and operated by two pioneer Bay County maritime families and is the granddaddy of Panama City Beach Marinas. An estimated 1 million visitors per year, or practically everyone who partakes in the “world’s most beautiful beaches”, come to Capt. Anderson’s Marina for one reason or another. The Marina offers visitors to Panama City Beach a variety of recreational activities ranging from exciting deep sea fishing in the nearby Gulf of Mexico, to sightseeing tours for Shell Island and dolphin encounters. The Marina also includes superb restaurants–the world famed Capt. Anderson’s Restaurant and Dockside’s Hook and Cook – Oyster Bar.
Boats at the Marina
The Marina has 38 private charter boats and 3 large, ultra-modern party fishing boats. For sightseeing tours, we have the double-decker, glass bottom boat the Capt. Anderson III that offers narrated tours to Shell Island and romantic Dolphin encounters at sunset.
Most Capt. Anderson Marina facilities operate year round and over 300 people work on the marina during the busy months, making it one of Bay County’s largest industries.
Capt. Anderson’s Marina opened in 1957, the creation of two veteran mariners, Capt. Max Anderson and his brother, Capt. Walter Anderson. Keeping a watchful eye on the operation and offering helpful advice was their father, Capt. C.S. Anderson, a legendary Panama City fishing boat skipper who died in 1968 at age 96. He built his last fishing boat when he was past 80 and remained active on the waterfront until his very last years of life. The Anderson family have been fishing local waters since 1855 and supplied salt fish to the confederacy during the war between the states.
Brothers Max and Walter opened Capt. Anderson’s Restaurant in 1960, and it was sold to the Patronis brothers Johnny and Jimmy Patronis, the present owners, in 1967, following the death of Capt. Walter Anderson. Under the skilled hands of the Patronis brothers, second generation Greek Americans who were born into the culinary business, Capt. Anderson’s Restaurant has become world famous and has been rated as one of Florida’s top ten eateries for the past several years.
Capt. George W. Davis & Sons, Inc., purchased half interest in Capt. Anderson’s Marina in early 1982 from Mrs. Judy Beth Anderson Groom, daughter of the late Capt. Walter Anderson. Capt. Max Anderson, dean of active Bay County Fishing Skippers and, at 77, patriarch of the famed Anderson fishing family, remained as owner of the other half interest in the marina. The Andersons operated from the old Panama City Municipal Dock, forerunner of the present Downtown Marina, before moving to the Grand Lagoon.
Pioneer settlers of Allenton in east Bay County, the Davis family started its party fishing boat business in 1946, with the late Capt. George W. Davis as the founder. The famous Davis Queen Fleet operated out of St. Andrew’s Municipal marina prior to the merger with Anderson Fleet and moving to Grand Lagoon on April 1, 1982. The Anderson-Davis Families have a combination of over 200 years of fishing experience in local waters.
Since arriving in N.W. Florida in the 1850’s, the Anderson family has always made their living by the sea. In the early days, this was mostly catching fish with nets and seines, sometimes with a hook and line. When the price of Red Snapper hit $.05 per pound, Capt. Charley Anderson hung up the seine and went after snappers. In 1935, he started taking customers out to catch snapper and grouper. Zane Gray, the famous western writer was one of his early patrons.
In the next few years, his four sons, Walter, Max, Lambert and Virgil, followed suite and joined their family business. Though they made their living taking people out fishing on the party boats, they still loved “striking” the net around a big school of fish. During the 1960s, Capt. Walter and Capt. Max, co-founders of Capt. Anderson’s Marina, each had a net boat that they used to catch bait fish for their party boats. They also caught food fish in the fall and spring. In the 1990s, Florida banned fishing with big nets so then they went into storage. In 2012, Capt. Max’s son, Ken Anderson, pulled out his dad’s old seine net that they fished with in the 1960’s. He has made this small part of history available to you.
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