Fred Trepper, Sr. my father, and I spent a long career in the aviation industry and decided we wanted a change and looked to the water. We created a company named, “Island Marine Products”, which is located in Labelle, Fl. The business started with my Dad and I designing and manufacturing recreational Boats and then evolved to designing and building Commercial tour boats.
One day, Dad and I were sitting in his office and decided to design a boat for an idea we had to be called “Banana Bay Tour Company”. And that’s exactly what we did! The “Coconut Woman” was manufactured in 2000-2001 and this was the first step for Banana Bay Tour Company becoming a reality. We worked together to create the logo as you see it today, put it on the boat and set it in the water. After the Coconut Woman, we listened to you, our passengers, what was needed to create the ideal boat for our sightseeing cruises. Visit the “Our Fleet” section to view each boat as they have evolved over the years to meet your needs while on our Sightseeing Cruises.
Banana Bay Tour Company was officially incorporated 2001, running cruises on Lake Okeechobee out of the town of Clewiston. One day Dad stumbled into beautiful Cape Harbour and instantly knew this where he wanted the boat to be! Our shop opened in Cape Harbour in 2006 and is now our main reservation center and premier boarding locations for all of our cruises.
Then the business was brought to new levels when we decided become a Member of The Society of Ethical Ecotourism and then again when we became an approved core operator with Dolphin Smart. I served as a Board Member at The Society of Ethical Ecotourism for approximately 3 years and contributed to the implementation of the Certification Checklist to become a Certified Tour Operator with The Society of Ethical Ecotourism.
Joining all these groups prompted me to learn more about Florida’s Eco Systems, Marine Life and the Coastal Environment so I went to a program provided by the University of Florida and received my Florida Master Naturalist Certificate in Coastal Environment in 2007. The education I received is part of what my Captains, Mates and I share with you on each of our cruises. Whether it is our Dolphin Nature Cruise, our Homes and Harbour Cruise or our Ecological Lunch Cruise , my goal is to help educate the children of today to preserve the environment of future generations.
Banana Bay Tour Company has received many honors and recognition. Our most recent ones are from:
All of our achievements could not have been achieved without you, our passengers, and I would like to thank each and every one of you for your kind words and support along the way.
See you on the next cruise!
Captain JR Trepper