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Membership Handbook



Welcome to the Lake Effects family! We are so glad you made the decision to be a part of our Boat Club. Our team at Lake Effects is here to be of service to you and your family. Our mission is to help our members have the best boating experience on Lake Norman possible while keeping safety a priority.




redefining the boating experience

Our Lake Effects team is here to make your boating experience relaxing, refreshing, and memorable without the hassles of owning a boat. No storage fees, no maintenance fees and no clean up fees. Simply request the equipment you desire when reserving your boat and our dock team will have everything ready for you upon arrival. We do our very best to see that operations run as smoothly as possible at Lake Effects to ensure your experience is excellent.

our story


Lake Effects Boat Rentals began in 2009 with only 3 boats. Our goal was to grow our small rental fleet and serve Lake Norman customers with excellence. We steadily grew our rental fleet over the next few years and came to the realization that there was another opportunity in which we could serve our local Lake Norman residents. We began researching boat clubs and realized there was a need right here on Lake Norman for that type of service. We knew we wanted to be different and think outside of the box. Being boaters ourselves, we knew the things that boaters would appreciate and the extras that would make boating more enjoyable. So, we decided to jump in and design a boat club that would cater to local residents and take the hassle out of boating. Lake Effects Boat Club launched in 2014 at Midway Marina. Our members and boating fleet have grown over the years at a steady pace, which we are very grateful for. We believe the reason for this is our passion and hard work in creating an environment and culture that is centered around family. We are continuously striving to redefine boating by making the experience as convenient as possible for members to enjoy!

the lake effects team


Our Lake Effects Team has grown in size over the years in an effort to accommodate the needs of our boat club members. Our Team is passionate about seeing our members enjoy time with their family & friends and making their experience on Lake Norman excellent and memorable. We care about the needs of each member and will do our very best to fulfill their needs. We take our customers ideas & feedback seriously and have implemented many ideas into our boat club operations.


boat club ratio


Our member to boat ratio is approximately 7:1, which provides great opportunity for each member to select the boats they desire. We continuously strive to make each member’s experience better by re-innovating the boating experience.


your first time out


At Lake Effects Midway Marina, you may park in front or behind the Lake Effects building. At Lake Effects Stutts Marina you can park in the marina parking lot. You will need to check in at the front office at either location

(Midway Marina or Stutts Marina) where our friendly staff will check you in and make sure your boat is equipped with all items you would like on board the boat you have reserved for the day. When you arrive down at the docks, simply hand your check in form to our team and they will have your boat clean and ready with the requested equipment on board. Feel free to use the boat club lounge at our Midway location to grab a snack or a glass of wine.

Both marinas have a store stocked with a variety of boating supplies, snacks and more!




Safety is always on the forefront of our minds; training each member with boating and lake safety is very important to us. We are happy to provide orientation on the use of the different boats we have to offer. The state of North Carolina also requires that you complete a boaters education course if you were born on or after Jan. 1, 1988, and will be operating a boat or PWC of 10 hp or more in North Carolina. We recommend visiting northcarolina to complete an easy online certification. This is highly recommended for boaters of all ages and can also be a great refresher on lake safety for seasoned boaters.

departing the dock


When departing our dock, stay at a very slow idle speed (no wake) until you are approximately 100 yards away from the marina entrance. Make sure you observe and obey all shoal signs and no wake zones under bridges, at marinas and around docks.




Lake Norman has many fingers and inlets. Boats can be coming from any direction. Always keep an eye out and look in all directions for other boaters. When two vessels approach each other from opposite directions “heads on“, each must alter course to the right to avoid collision. If the two vessels are far enough to the left of each other so that no change in direction is needed for safe passage, both will maintain their course and speed to pass clear.


When towing watersports on Lake Norman all persons in the water must have on a Coast Guard approved life jacket. When towing, make sure you have a spotter to alert the driver when someone has fallen in the water, so that you can immediately loop around to the skier or persons tubing. When doing any towing the driver should remain alert for other boaters. Maintain at least 100 yards from all docks and shorelines when doing water sports. The wake from ski boats can cause damage to residents docks, shoreline, and boats. Towing watersports from a boat club jetski is strictly prohibited.


seating on the boat


All passengers must be inside of the railing and in a seated position when the boat is in motion. No passengers should be outside of the pontoon railing, sitting on the seat tops or edge of the boat AT ANY TIME the boat is running.



When stopping to swim on the lake, we HIGHLY ENCOURAGE EVERYONE TO WEAR A LIFE JACKET. When

swimming the engine must be completely off. We highly recommend someone stay on the boat if not anchored. Also, for your safety, stay clear of the propeller when swimming around the back of the boat.






If you have an issue with the running or safety of your boat, please call or text (704) 360-5177. We have a team on standby that can assist you with any questions or issues that may occur. If you have a life-threatening emergency please call 911 right away and then contact us.



When its time to return to the docks, be aware and adhere to the NO WAKE ZONE. Slow down to a very slow idle 100 yards away from the Marina. Wild Life Officers or Sheriff may pull you over and issue you a ticket if you violate this law. When docking: slow is the key! If something starts to go wrong, don’t panic. Quickly shift and give the boat a bit more throttle. Typically, our dock team will be there to greet and help you with docking. If you are returning from after hours from an evening reservation, you will need to dock the boat and tie it up properly, also called mooring. Our dock team will be happy to show you how to do this and make sure you are comfortable with docking.

Leave your water sports equipment on the boat. Wet life jackets should be layed out to dry, on the seats of the boat. Tube and ski ropes should be untangled and rolled up. Our team will fill the boat full of gas in the morning and charge your card on file for the amount used.





Wrap line on the cleat base.

Complete a single loop around the cleat base.

Cross the line under the cleat & over the horn at each end.

Form a loop with the end of the line, passing under the loop.

Pass the loop over the horn & cinch the end.




It is best to keep all boats 100 yards away from all shorelines. Lake Norman has various shoals and rocks under water that can cause sudden and severe damage to boats as well as compromise the safety of boaters.




We DO NOT allow ski boats to be beached at any time! Extreme caution must be used when beaching pontoons. Surf and wakeboard boats must stay as close to the middle

of the lake as possible as these are very expensive to repair.


surfing & watersports


Remember, ALWAYS have the motor shut off when someone is in the water. Never pull a tube in to a marina or dock. Have the person board, enter the boat and bring the tube and rope on board before docking. If surfing or wake boarding please be respectful of docks. Surfing in back coves is not liked by homeowners who have expensive docks. A 4 foot swell can do some damage. We recommend surfing in a quiet cove where there is not as much traffic. Pulling watersports equipment behind a boat club PWC/Jetski is strictly PROHIBITED as it can cause thousands of dollars worth of damage.


age restrictions


Anyone under the age of born on or after January 1, 1988 must have a valid NC boaters license. All drivers must have a valid drivers license. All drivers must be over the age of 18.

evening & after hours reservations


Enjoying evening sunsets on Lake Norman can’t be described in pictures. When using an evening time slot you may end up returning after our docks have closed for the day. Simply dock your boat and tie it up in the boat’s designated slip. Please put the keys in the after hours key drop box located by the gas dock water sports shed. We will fill your boat with gas the next morning and charge the card on file. Leave the water sports equipment on the boat and put any wet life jackets out to dry.


in season vs. off season


Boats are available year round. From November 1st until mid March our ski boats are pulled out of the water and winterized. Pontoon Boats remain in the water for year round use for our boat club members. During daylight savings time our evening slot is removed due to dark lighting conditions and cold waters.


During the winter season you will see Sunday morning slots are not in the schedule system. However, if you wish to go out on a Sunday morning, just email or call our front desk at least 24 hours in advance and we will have it ready for you. Please keep in mind that we have reduced staff in the off season. For a quicker response emailing us at is best during the off season.

boat substitutions


Boats take an extreme amount of maintenance and care. We diligently service and clean our boats on a routine basis. However, issues can come up with boats unexpectedly, due to mechanics or operator error. As with any piece of mechanical equipment, there is potential for it to break down or have issues due to operator error. We keep many backup parts in stock for instances like this and do our best to keep repair turnaround time to a minimum. Many times repairs and maintenance go unnoticed by our members. In the unfortunate event that a boat breaks down for any reason, rest assured we will have a backup boat for you to use. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that we will have an exact boat to match yours on standby, but we will keep you on the water with a clean and well operating boat!


newsletter & events


Email is our primary form of communication to our members. We will send out a monthly newsletter listing any events that we have going on over the year such as membership appreciation barbecues, open house promo- tions, new boat announcements and social media contests. You can also find up to date club information on our Facebook page: We want to keep our members in the loop of what is going on

in and around Lake Effects Boat Club. If you are not receiving these important emails, please contact us!


get social


Our passion is to see our club members truly enjoy their time making memories on Lake Norman. We LOVE to see our members having fun! Tag Lake Effects Boat Club in your photos with your family having fun on Lake Norman, using #LakeEffectsLakeNorman.


member etiquette


Lake Effects members have a reputation for being amazing! We love getting to know you and your families. There may be a time when you are waiting for a boat to return and it is late to the dock. We do our best to help avoid these situations. However, if this happens to you, please use our member lounge, grab a glass of wine or a complimentary soda. Stay calm and respectful, you never know the other members situation.



Your membership will be billed monthly either on the 1st or the 15th depending on what date you chose when you signed up. If your credit card is declined the system will try again the next day. If it is declined 3 days after the 1st or the 15th our processor will charge a $35 fee. If you need to change your card on file, you can do it directly from your online account. You will be charged for gas upon each use of a boat. If you used a boat after hours, we will bill your card the next morning.


membership upgrade/downgrade


You may at any point upgrade your membership and pay the additional membership upgrade fee. Your new monthly rate will start on the next billing cycle and will require a 12 month commitment at that level.

If you choose, you may downgrade after your 12 month commitment has been satisfied. There is no cost to downgrade, however if you wish to upgrade to a different level in the future, you will have to pay the upgrade fee.

membership transfer


Your membership is non-transferable. We do not permit members to transfer their contract to someone else's name at any time during their 12 month agreement. Should you choose to discontinue your membership, it will be at the conclusion of your agreement.


membership usage


Your household (you and your spouse) have access to unlimited usage. However, other family members can’t come use a boat with their friends even if they live with you. Friends and family MUST be accompanied by a member. Children are not permitted to checkin for a reservation, an adult on the membership must checkin.

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