Malibu Boats (@MalibuBoats) receives great owner stories throughout the year, but some of the most passionate seem to come during Malibu Boat Show Season. We met Gene Haldeman at the Hartford, Connecticut Boat Show in Malibu Boats' Dealer Candlewood East Marine's booth. After scrolling through tons of water skiing and boating photos of her family friends we asked Gene to send us some of the pics to post online. We had no idea she would send us this great story! Thank you, Gene!
It all started in the summer of 2000, when my husband and I bought our first ski boat. It was an entry-level MasterCraft, and (unfortunately) we were not pleased with it for long. By summer's end we were looking for something classier (sorry, MasterCraft!) and after some research realized that we should look into Malibu. We were at that time living on the Seacoast of NH, and went to see the nearest Malibu dealer - East Coast Flightcraft in Middleton, MA, to see the boats there. We found the perfect replacement - a 2000 black & tan Response LX. The dealer had this boat in their showroom under the lights, beautifully detailed after about 80 hours of demo use, and we fell in love with it immediately.
In the Fall of 2003 we moved to CT, but had no boating friends yet. The following April I was out driving and saw a Malibu out in front of an auto repair place. I stopped, met the owner, and looked over the boat - a 2003 Response LXi. At the same time I met a friend of the LXi's owner, who was new to boating but had always wanted to own a boat and water ski. He was so proud of his new I/O, just purchased (without his friend's advice). We all boated and skied together that summer, mostly on the 2 Malibus. By the end of that summer I so admired the LXi that I decided to look around and found one I liked advertised online by a dealer in NY. My I/O friend and I went to see it - another demonstrator with lots of extras and about 80 hours on it. We took an in-water ride and I fell in love with it - a blue & white 2004 Response LXi. What followed was a domino effect - I bought the blue & white, my friend bought my black & tan, and finally sold the I/O. I also acquired a Shetland Sheepdog puppy - Sammy - that summer; she became our boating mascot. Sammy goes out with us every boating day. Her little head can be seen on the blue & white, at the rear of the boat.
So now we have 2 fine Malibus in our little "fleet", both of which I have lovingly owned and maintained. For me, Malibu is the very definition of quality, style, design excellence and elegance on the water. As long as I continue to ski, Malibu is the only boat I will ever own - I was an admirer at first sight and my opinion has not changed as the years go by. I follow Malibu's technological and design advances that come along each year with great interest, but my '04 blue & white Response LXi continues to be the perfect boat for me, absolutely the best in its class for 2004. The only changes I made over the years were adding a Titan II stainless tower and a Scarpa plate.
In closing, I cannot begin to describe the pride and joy this fine machine brings to my summers. I only wish I had more summer in my life - might have to move away from New England to get it!
Tags: Malibu Boats | Malibu Owner | Gene Haldeman | Response LX | Response LXi | Candlewood East | Malibu Dealer | Hartford CT | East Coast Flightcraft | ski boats | water skiing