Splashboard Media’s 110-foot boat, complete with large, lighted billboard, was put to use last week to keep boaters away from a live-fire military exercise in the Gulf of Mexico.

DESTIN — A billboard mounted on the back of a boat makes frequent appearances along local coastlines and at Crab Island in the summer.


But Splashboard Media’s 110-foot boat, complete with large, lighted billboard, was put to use last week to keep boaters away from a live-fire military exercise in the Gulf of Mexico.


The blue boat and its sign were visible to motorists crossing the Marler Bridge in Destin on Thursday. It was anchored near the base of the west jetty.


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“This is our third year of working with the Air Force or the Air Force contractors providing mission support,” said Chris Kopecky, one of the company’s owners.


The notice warned boaters to remain clear of the area.


He said the use of their sign replaced having local captains hand out fliers to boaters to notify them that portions of the Gulf were closed during such exercises.


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Kopecky said that although they are known as a floating billboard, they are actually a multi-media platform.


Their business does everything from notifying boaters of closures to sharing flag conditions with beachgoers and showing movies at Crab Island.


The sign is 20 by 30 feet and is mounted on the large blue boat operated by a Coast Guard-certified 100-ton captain.