Thanksgiving on a houseboat

November 2010 News Chris Umpierre -

The Wickmanns of Gateway will slice into their turkey and bite into their pumpkin pie on a 100-foot houseboat off the waters of Fort Myers Beach.

"When we lived in Minnesota, we used to have Thanksgiving on a houseboat, and we missed it," Peggy Wickmann said. "So this year we said, `We're going to be on the water.'"

The Wickmanns rented the two-story houseboat, which has six bedrooms and five bathrooms, from Snook Bight marina. The boat rental costs $700 a night, according to the company's website. About 21 family members started staying on the boat Wednesday afternoon and won't depart until Friday afternoon.

"Rather than people coming and going, we're all going to be together," Peggy Wickmann said.

Wickmann said the bulk of her family lives in the same gated community.

"For every birthday and holiday, we get together," Wickmann said.

"It's very important. It gives the grandchildren a good sense of who they are."

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