COPY-A pirate ship on the Wateree River? Really?

By Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield - bio | email

KERSHAW COUNTY, SC (WIS) - Have you seen the pirate ship on the banks of the Wateree River near I-20 east of Columbia? Have you been wondering what is it and why it's there?

"They thought it was a shipwreck, said somebody's boat's here off I-20," said Matt McCaskill.

Whoever they were didn't realize it's not an accident, it's somebody's dream.

McCaskill and Colt Shirley got the nickname Wateree River Pilots in high school, and then they got the idea. "There was an old boat that sunk across the river from me, and we just got to looking at it and said 'let's build a pirate ship,' and we just happened to do it," said Shirley.

Matt is in construction, and Colt paints and decorates. "One ship, two captains," said McCaskill. "I think we picked that up from Pirates of the Caribbean. Barbossa and Sparrow."

Because there are two captains, there are two beds in the quarters -- and even some jewels for the nightstand.

There are other bedrooms for boarders, and tents for those who won't fit. The guys will lead boat tours out here by day, and entertain by night.

"We had a kayak shop, and we were tired of being at the shop every day and people come get in, the boat's in the river without us," said Shirley.

The boat is named Blackheart, after a bottle of rum. On Saturday, it will officially be open for business -- proving life under a bridge can be a dream come true.

You can learn more about the Blackheart by clicking here.

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