LPSC Will Not Dye Lake Pleasant Green

Because we don’t live in Chicago, don’t expect Lake Pleasant to be dyed green for St. Patrick’s Day. But Lake Pleasant Sailing Club (LPSC) can expect a great day of sailing and an even greater raft up on March 9-10.

The day will start with a Pot-of-Gold Treasure Hunt on Lake Pleasant. Ten numbered pots of gold will be hidden on the shore around the lake. You’ll be given 10 clues to help you find the treasure. In order to confirm your success, you must take a digital picture of  each pot-of-gold. The boat  crew with the most pictures will win a prize. In case of a tie, your cruise directors will think of some blarney-inspired way to declare one winner at the raft up that follows. Watch for more details on the LPSC website.

At 4 pm the Paynes and the Goldmans are hoping you’ll join them for a fun, blarney-filled raft-up in a location yet to be announced. Be ready to party hearty with the LPSC Irish and/or Irish wannabees. They’re planning a contest to test your knowledge of Irish trivia and a limerick competition. Please bring an appetizer or dessert to share (the more Irish-themed the better). Please plan to enjoy dinner on your own boat. Watch Meetup, the website and email for more details. Of course, all AYC members are invited to join LPSC at this event.

—Rhonda Brewer

AYC Volunteers Clean SR-74

Blue bags collect trash on the side of Carefree Highway.

Blue bags collect trash on the side of Carefree Highway.

Thanks to 10 volunteers who did their part to maintain AYC’s commitment to the Adopt-a-Highway program.

In 2½ hours on a Saturday morning they filled nearly 50 bags with trash along a ¾ mile stretch of SR-74. The day was complemented by beautiful weather, several hot air balloons landing nearby, and a good lunch courtesy of AYC.

If you’re interested in helping on a future clean up, please contact organizer Peter Lehrach.

The crew (left to right): Martin Lorch, Thom Dickerson, Jeff Sloan, Juan Gagna, Jake Wease, Paul Eyssautier, and Kyle Clark. Volunteers not pictured: Pierce Cunningham, Michael Parker, and Peter Lehrach (who took the picture)

The crew (left to right): Martin Lorch, Thom Dickerson, Jeff Sloan, Juan Gagna, Jake Wease, Paul Eyssautier, and Kyle Clark. Volunteers not pictured: Pierce Cunningham, Michael Parker, and Peter Lehrach (who took the picture).

This is the right time for crew to join AYC

If you crew, we’d like you to join the Arizona Yacht Club.

It’s not just for boat owners, but for crew as well and right now you can join for the initiation fee ($150) and half the annual dues ($62.50), because the AYC year is half over. (You’ll need to renew your membership for $125 next summer.) Click this link to sign up!

Why join? To support this great sport, to make sure we have the boats, marks, programs and events for you to enjoy! Don’t leave it to others—join in.

Peter Lehrach crews for me (Commodore Mike Ferring) on our J/80 and he’s not only become a member, but he’s been active on the AYC board of directors and organizes our highway cleaning program. Here’s what he has to say:


Peter Lehrach is the AYC Secretary and a new member of the club. He moved to the area in 2011 after competing in various boats and regattas in the East and South. Peter crews on Commodore Mike Ferring's J/80.

Peter Lehrach is the AYC Secretary and a new member of the club. He moved to the area in 2011 after competing in various boats and regattas in the East and South. Peter crews on Commodore Mike Ferring’s J/80.

The only boat I’ve ever owned was a Sunfish more than 30 years ago. Yet I love sailing; I love racing. And I’ve done a lot of it.

I’ve had the privilege of crewing on other people’s boats extensively on the East, West, and Gulf coasts and several lakes and rivers across America. I’ve also had international racing experiences in or to Mexico, the Caribbean, Bermuda, and England. I learned very early in my crewing career that if you have some skill, cheerfully volunteer to assist in maintenance, and (most importantly) reliably show up then further opportunities and referrals easily come your way. In many ways I had it dialed in perfectly: I got to do my favorite activity, at little personal expense, and I was appreciated by the boat owner. Our relationship was a benefit to both of us. Until recently however, I never joined a yacht club. In hindsight, that was wrong.

I rationalized that only boat owners need to be members. I thought my use of yacht club facilities (launches, showers, bars, restaurants, etc.), purchase of club-branded shirts, participation in racing, social, and educational events were all necessary for “my” boat owners to take advantage of their yacht club privileges and any personal benefit I received was a show of appreciation from the boat owners.

I now realize that while I had been giving and taking with the boat owner, my relationship with the yacht club had been one-way. I further realized that yacht clubs are the community that enables my favorite activity. You see, without a club there is no racing as it takes more than one boat to have a race. It takes more than one boat crew to have a social event. It takes several interested sailors to attract an educational speaker.

Because of the Arizona Yacht Club, we can get our feet wet in the desert even when there is snow and ice on boats elsewhere in the country. How many people can say that? The racing is well run and competitive, the race committee boats and marks are of high quality, and the opportunities to network and learn with likeminded sailors is unique for the area.

Chances are, if you are a long-time crew, you’ve thought about joining the AYC and then rationalized it away as I once did. For those who have since become members, thank you! If not, please reconsider: AYC needs your membership to strengthen our desert sailing community. Compared to other places I’ve sailed, AYC member financial obligations are downright cheap. The reciprocal privileges are fantastic. Participation on committees and helping with events are personal growth opportunities and will make you feel good. I know I do.

Thank you for considering my message and I’ll see you on the water,
Peter Lehrach AYC Secretary
AYC Member since 2012 (602.741.2016)

Annie Gardner Applauds On-The-Edge America’s Cup

Annie Gardner shows off her new AYC polo shirt after speaking at the March meeting.

Annie Gardner shows off her new AYC polo shirt after speaking at the February meeting.

Champion sailor Annie Gardner told the AYC February meeting that the coming America’s Cup will be the most amazing in the Cup’s long history. Go watch it, she said, because it may not happen again.

Annie ran down the entries, agreeing with most AC watchers that Emirates New Zealand has the inside track to take the Cup in September’s competition in San Francisco Bay. The team is ahead of the other three entries in preparing its boat and is getting more essential practice time in Auckland.

She was the expert TV commentator at the first European AC 45 races and got a ride with the French entry with Loïck Peyron at the helm. She said he had never capsized a mult-hull despite multiple trips around the world in difficult conditions—hadn’t capsized one until he flipped the Energy Team boat in the heavy wind in Plymouth. That’s the sort of challenge these boats present. (Peyron has sailed the Artemis AC72 boat and says, “These are boats that aren’t that wide or that big, but…have a very powerful ‘engine.’ To get an idea of what I mean, it’s a bit like putting a V8 or V12 engine on a go-kart. So it is no easy matter making use of all that power.” And he adds, “Of all the boats I have sailed on, she is the trickiest.”)

You may remember Annie from her role on America³, the women’s America’s Cup contender. She was chosen for the team from 700 applicants and sailed as navigator on the boat. Her qualifications for the team: A Silver Medal in Olympic Boardsailing exhibition in the 1984 games and a host of national and international Hobie cat and boardsailing titles. She’s still an active sailor (and skier; she was on her way to Utah to ski), sailing with her fiance on a NACRA 17 multi-hull.


Annie Gardner talks multi-hulls at the February AYC meeting. Photos: Mike Ferring


Meet Some of AYC’s Newest Members

Jonathan Abel-Millman (left) and crew in a storm off Norfolk.

Jonathan Abel-Millman (left) and crew in a storm off Norfolk.


Jonathan grew up sailing around Cape Cod and on small lakes in Pennsylvania. His passion for sailing led him to study Naval Architecture at the University of Michigan. He raced four seasons out of Annapolis, MD on a Humphreys 38, doing mainly bow. Last June he did a delivery of a C&C 38 from Bermuda to Annapolis, MD. (The picture show the crew after they hit a large storm several miles off Norfolk, VA. Jonathan is on the left). In 2008, he raced in the 2008 Annapolis Race week on a J24, and this fall crewed on a Santana 20 on Lake Pleasant and the Fireball on TTL. Jonathan is interested in doing more Blue Water and Coastal long distance races.


Susan has lived in AZ since the age of 5, considered somewhat a native. She lives within minutes of Tempe Town Lake and enjoys the sailing activities there. She’s new to sailing: She took Start Sailing Right in the Fall of 2009 and Sailing Skills Development in Fall 2011. She sailed a Sunfish during that course and is interested in adopting a Sunfish. In November 2012, she crewed at Lake Pleasant and also enjoyed meeting all the ladies that sail at their first “Ladies’ Sailing Gathering.” Her current interests are to become more involved in crewing races, the Ladies’ Sailing Group, and taking additional classes.


Kurt raced dingies for 52 years and loved every moment of it! He raced Thistles for the last 30 years along with Lightnings and Fireballs. He still owns his Lightning and an Arrow iceboat. His current “dinghy” is a Soling keel boat. He says that although they’re now out of favor at the international level, they’re the best sailboat he’s ever sailed! Kurt hopes he can build a fleet here for one-design racing. Kathy and Kurt met crewing on a Lightning 30 years ago. They started cruising a few years later on a Tartan 30.  She prefers cruising to racing but is still good for potluck regatta cooking. They purchased a Crealock 37 seventeen years ago and sailed it from south Florida to the Great Lakes, spending years on Lake Erie, Lake Huron, and now on Lake Superior. They will split their time between Bayfield, Wisconsin, at the Apostle Islands, and Cave Creek and Lake Pleasant.


Kat Malinsky and Ruby Whelan recently moved to Scottsdale from St. Petersburg, Florida. Kat has been sailing since she was 12 years old. Starting out on a Sunfish on Long Island Sound, she graduated to a Cal 25 on Tampa Bay as an adult. Then Kat and Ruby bought an Ericson 29 together to cruise the Tampa Bay area. Kat went on to complete her Coast Guard Captain’s License and Ruby soon discovered that she was a day sailor who preferred to have crew along for the trip! So Kat downsized to a Catalina 22 that she could single-hand. Moving to Arizona has shifted Kat’s interests to racing. She’s looking forward to crewing on Hot Flash, Dianna Andress’ Santana 20, this spring series.

Lake Pleasant Sailing Club Sweetheart Cruise

Traditionally February is the month Mardi Gras, Presidential birthdays, and of course love. This year is no exception! On Saturday, February 9, Lake Pleasant Sailing Club (LPSC) members and AYC members are invited to sail Lake Pleasant for one of LPSC’s most popular events—the Sweethearts Cruise. However, because new cruise directors, Tim and Rhonda Brewer, are trying to change things up a bit, a couple of new features will be added to the day.

As usual, only females will be allowed to “man” the tiller or the wheel during the race. The gender  and number of crew members are completely up to the skipper, but crew is restricted to sail trim and serving duties. Skippers are invited to meet at the BBQ area of the Lake Pleasant Marina before the race to register their crew and to participate in the pre-race fashion show. Each skipper will earn a one-minute time credit for each piece of pink attire her crew is wearing—up to 10 minutes/boat.

In addition to a description of the cruising course, each skipper will be given a packet of activities that may be completed during the race for additional time credit. Be sure to have a working radio on your boat. As you can see, the Sweetheart Trophy is up for grabs this year!

As always, AYC members are invited to join this event—the more the merrier!

By Rhonda Brewer, LPSC