Maryland Small Business Development Center

Southern Region Success Stories

Serving Calvert, Charles, St. Mary's Counties in Maryland

Brackish Waters - SBDC Consulting - Smooth Sailing

Brackish Waters - SBDC Consulting - Smooth Sailing

When the retail store in Baltimore where Rachael McCall was employed closed its doors in December 2016 she, with the support of husband Kevin, decided to open a new board shop in Prince Frederick specializing in snow boards, skis, paddle boards and accessories. The store would be called Brackish Waters, LLC.

Together they had developed a business plan, found a location, contacted a bank and then contacted Kathy MacAdams, Business Consultant for Small Business Development Center (SBDC). Kathy gladly reviewed their business plan and began to look for alternative and gap funding to help the McCall’s begin their venture.

At the end of January Kathy learned that the location the McCall’s were negotiating had been leased by another company. When she shared this information with the McCall’s they were surprised and dismayed. Rachael and Kevin persevered and found another location, Kathy found alternative and gap funding and by the end of February they had signed a lease and closed on their startup loan.

Kathy kept in touch and reminded them of the paperwork and necessary steps to legally open to the public including obtaining proof of fire safety, water and sewer capacity, and detailed occupancy, and use information to be submitted on the permit application.

On Tuesday, May 16th, Kathy and Economic Development visited Brackish Waters to welcome them to the Calvert County Business Community.Although Rachael and Kevin live in Clinton, MD they saw a need for an outdoor adventure store in Calvert County. Brackish Waters opened its doors to the public on Saturday May 20th. The space is 1500 sq feet and looks very modern and inviting. Current brands they are carrying are: Sanuk, Element, Pulse, Lotus Lane (to list a few). The store has stand up paddle boards of various prices and skateboards, men's and women's clothing and bathing suits. Accessories are bracelets, candles, hats and flip flops.Rachael is also offering a Shopify through their website

The SBDC really helped us in opening our storefront location. They pointed us in the right direction with funding and they are always there to support with whatever we need! We would not have been able to do this without the support of the community.

The SBDC is a part of a statewide and national network of experts that work together to ensure entrepreneurs and existing business owners like Rachael McCall get the information, resources and support they need to be successful. SBDC advisers offer a variety of free business consulting and low-cost training services — business plan development, targeted industry services for manufacturing and technology companies, leadership training, financial packaging and lending assistance, exporting and importing support, business growth strategy, disaster recovery assistance, procurement and contracting aid, retail sales strategies, market research help, 8(a) program support and healthcare guidance. Free workshops are available as well as low-cost classes provided through CSM.

For information on Brackish Waters visit or call (443) 968-2694.

For information on the SBDC non-credit CSM courses designed for small business needs, visit

For information on the Southern Region SBDC and its services, visit

Posted: November 15, 2018

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