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'Thanks for the run' | Lyle's Boat shop in Cashmere closing after three generations of family ownership

CASHMERE — Lyle’s Boats & Motors is closing after a three-generation run and over 80 years of service.

Dan Mrachek, owner of the Cashmere shop at 5970 Sunburst Lane, has been emptying the shop out since he decided to close due to medical issues.

“I don’t have much time left,” said Dan, sitting by a photo of his grandfather, Lyle Mrachek, who started the family business of selling and servicing outboard motors in 1937. “Next year, year after, that’s about as long as they gave me.”

Dan is hoping to sell an assortment of parts, tools and boat-related supplies as he shuts down operations in Cashmere. The official closure date is tentatively set at the beginning of November.

Lyle’s Boats & Motors has been servicing boating needs from across the Wenatchee Valley since its inception. The business moved from its Wenatchee Avenue location to Cashmere in 2001.

An 11-year-old Dan started working in the family shop in 1959, pushing a broom, dusting shelves and marking merchandise. After getting back from college, Dan then took on work full-time at the shop.

“This is my life’s work,” he said.

Dan said he had been thinking about closing the shop for a while. “I got to close her up and move on down the road I guess,” he said.

Whatever people do not buy is going to the crusher, he said. The shop looks pretty bare now, but there is still a lot of equipment to sell.

Dan said that even if he did keep the business open, he would not be able to resume work as normal.

At 73 years old, “now is the time” to close up for good, Dan said. “Thanks for the run.”

His brother, Mike Mrachek, said Dan is an even better mechanic than their father.

The two brothers spent many a day getting in trouble around the family business as children. Mike said he used to get frustrated and throw down his tools when working. Then Dan would just come in and “fix, fix, fix.”

In the shop, Dan has always approached mechanical projects logically and pragmatically, he said.

“There isn’t anybody that knows more about outboards than Dan, I think in all the country,” he said.

The shop is not filled with boats anymore but there are years of manual books and tools to be found around the well-used space.

It’s the end of an era for Dan and his family, though Dan said he does not “have any regrets or anything. Just gotta get going.”

Luke Hollister: (509) 665-1172 or

on Twitter @lukeholli

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