The Big Yacht Giveaway

With the economy slowing, it's definitely not a seller's market for people looking to unload their high-priced yachts. So people are giving them away--sort of. Following up on their popular car-donation programs, charities such as Goodwill and Volunteers of America, as well as an increasing number of small nonprofits, are accepting boats and yachts, ranging in value from $500 to several million dollars. Volunteers of America alone took in more than 300 boats last year. Walter Cronkite has given two of his vessels to a Florida nonprofit.

While a few nonprofits that run aquatics camps use the boats for their activities,...

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