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Next AYC Happy Hour – O.H.S.O. North Scottsdale!

 Our Happy Hour events are generally scheduled on the 4th Tuesday of the month and move around the valley! This one is going to be in North Scottsdale at O.H.S.O Brewery and Distillery!

This is another Local First location that not only has their own brews, but distills their own spirits (and the Rum is SMOOTH!) The club will spring for some appetizers and you are welcome to pay for your own drinks and dinner if you would like. Hope to see you there!

Click here is more information on the venue!

AYC Campout Was Cool!

AYC Cool Camp Out!

As monsoon storms hit the valley over the weekend, making the 100 degree temps wet and muggy, many of our members gathered in the cool pines outside of Mormon Lake and above 7000 feet where the high temp was about 79 degrees!

There was a little bit of everything as far as accommodations goes; everything from Class A motor homes to tents and hammocks! There was some rain on Friday evening after everyone was in bed, but that didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits.

Saturday night Steve Nahkala brought the fire for the Saturday night cookout, and that was welcome after a hard day of hiking, biking, horseshoes, and cornhole!

Club Member Wendy Larsen

After dinner as the sun set there was more fire as we enjoyed evening bonfire (with the monsoon storms the fire hazards had been lowered to allow it.) Next year we’re going to try and coordinate with LPSC who had a camp out here at the same campground two weeks earlier! We hope to see everyone then!

Organizer Steve Nahkala brings the FIRE.

Leadership Changes on Your Board

Dr Sharon Bell

Dr. Sharon Bell

In a recent email it was mentioned that your Rear Commodore, Sharon Bell, was retiring her post. While we all know her as “Sharon,” Dr. Bell is a clinical psychologist and she decided to dedicate more time to her patients and her philanthropic efforts. I want to take a moment to thank her for all her contributions for the year and a quarter she held the post. Under her tenure as Rear Commodore, the AYC featured speakers like Gary Jobson, North U founder Bill Gladstone, J-Boats president Jeff Johnstone, Oracle USA Tactician Andrew Campbell, Tom White of The Moorings, and John Jourdane the author of “Modern Weather for Sailors.” Of course no one does all this alone. Maryellen Ferring was on Sharon’s team and was also instrumental in all of the planning as well. Sharon will be missed!

Rear Commodore Josh McClain

Our new Rear Commodore is Joshua McClain. He has been around sailing for a long time with his father but started down his personal sailing journey when he and his wife, Heather (your Cruising Fleet Captain,) took the Adult Beginning Sailing Class right here from the ASF. With their daughter Emma, they sail as a family often and just got back from a 10 day BVI trip this summer.

I know Josh will put everything he has into the job and I look forward to working with him for the rest of this Board Year!

AYC Happy Hour – 4 Peaks Brewing in Tempe

Happy Hour at 4 Peaks Brewing!

In conjunction with our effort to focus more on our members and the relationships that make our club strong, we had an AYC Happy Hour at 4 Peaks Brewing in Tempe last Tuesday. The Club sprung for some appetizers and there were about 25-30 people that showed up!

We’re going to continue this “Off Week Happy Hour” effort moving it to different parts of the Valley so different members can attend. How do you know when and where they are? The Club Calendar will be updated with the events and we are trying to utilize the Facebook Events Page more as well! We’ll also include them in the roughly weekly email update with what’s going on.

We’d love to have your help to organize one! These are the kinds of events that help make our club great, so if you are interested in helping put a Happy Hour together in your part of the Valley, email Cruising@ArizonaYachtClub.org.

First Annual Officially Unofficial Catalina Flotilla!

Avalon from Mooring #38

Last weekend AYC Sponsored a Flotilla to Catalina Island, and what a great time it was! The sailing between Long Beach and Catalina was some of the best wind I’ve ever had both ways. On our way out the we had the sails up as we rounded the Carnival Cruise Ship Terminal and sailed out of the Long Beach Harbor entrance. On our boat we had 5 kids and 3 adults. We sailed until we dropped to 4kts and saw that mooring balls were becoming scarce. We motor-sailed the rest of the way.

We spent the first night (Friday) in Descanto Bay, just north of Avalon and open to the ocean. We caught up with our flotilla members Jim and Marilyn Nelson on their Hylas 46 Liberte. We had dinner ashore at Charlie’s Steak and Seafood which was amazing fresh caught fish! Being in Descanto Bay, the dinghy ride was about 10+ minutes one way and it was moderately rough night out in the open ocean, but being outside in the sun all day, sleep was found pretty easily by all!

Jim and Marilyn Nelson’s Hylas 46 – Liberte at Descanto Bay

The next day (Saturday) we cooked breakfast on the boat and planned our day ashore at the beach. Liberte chose to head up to Isthmus Cove at Two Harbors so we bed them a fond farewell. We dinghied into Avalon and got set up on the beach. The kids swam and played in the water and on this massive inflatable fun platform Avalon has set up there. At about 10am we got invited by the Avalon Harbor department to move into Avalon Harbor so My daughter and went over and moved the boat to its new mooring. Later, we had dinner at the Catalina Cantina. Now that we were in Avalon Harbor, the water was much calmer and we had a better evening’s rest.

Our Ship’s Compliment – 3 Gibbs’ and 5 Moreno’s!

The next morning, we cooked breakfast on the boat and made one last trip to shore for ice. We left Avalon, right at 9am, which is checkout time, and motored out of Avalon for about an hour. The wind came up early and we set sail. The USCG was broadcasting a Small Craft Advisory for 3pm with winds 20-30 MPH. We reefed when we started to see 7kts of Speed over Ground and then saw 7kts again under reef within about a half mile of LA Light (AKA Angle’s Gate).

Next year we are planning to arrange this in conjunction with the Tuscon Sailing Club who’s trip was the week before! Maybe even expand it by a day to catch a night in Two Harbors!

Our Club is YOU!

What makes a Club?

A club is its membership. It is YOU! It is made strong by the relationships among its members. We want to build on our foundation and create more and new relationships between the members of our club. So here are a few things to look for in the coming months:

August Meeting – New Member Mixer – Come meet the new members! New members, meet each other! The Club will be providing appetizers from 6:30 to 7:30 at Rolling Hills Golf Course and we want as many people to come as possible! Particularly New Members in the past 2 years!

AYC Campout – Get out of the heat with your friends! August 10-12 is our annual AYC Campout. Get more information on our Facebook Page or on the AYC Website.

Crew Party / Sail Jam 2018 – We are working with Scorpion Bay to have a Lake Pleasant Crew Party out on the end of the new docks! Were looking at 8 September for this – Bring you boat! You’ll be allowed to use the empty slips for the evening! We’ll also be having one at Tempe Town Lake as well…with Dates and Times to be announced.

Member Highlight Reel – We’re going to be working on a slide show to run at the beginning of meetings that highlights YOU! Look for an email with a form to fill out for us!

Your 2018 board is really excited about serving YOU. We really hope you are able to participate and that you find these events fun and meaningful.

Post-regatta party on the deck at Scorpion Grill. Photo: Mike Ferring

A New Way to Find Crew!

Are you a skipper looking for crew or crew looking for a ride? We’re going to try to create more sailing opportunities by moving the AYC Crew List right onto your phone with the Go Sailing App.

The Go Sailing App is a free one sponsored by ASA (American Sailing Association). Skippers can create a trip that they want crew for and crew can apply for the ride. It’s really easy to do either from your desktop or your Android or iPhone. It’s really easy to use. Create your account profile. Be sure to select the Arizona Yacht Club as your club. Then creating a trip is easy.

Check out this tutorial video:

 

Looking to crew? Check out all the events in this area and around the country!

 

Catalina Flotilla July 20th!

Catalina Flotilla

Kim OlsonGibbs sailing to Catalina!

We’ve got a great group ready to go to Catalina next weekend!

The general plan is:

  • Arrive Thursday the 19th late in the afternoon. Provision the boats.
  • Depart Friday the 20th at a respectable, yet, not early time and head for the port that has room for us! (We’ll be checking the Live Avalon Mooring Updates!)
  • Enjoy Dinner Ashore on Friday Night!
  • Saturday the 21st…open! Move harbors? Go for a day-sail? Explore the island? Visit other AZ Boats in the harbor? Dinner Ashore!
  • Sunday the 22nd we’ll leave our mooring by the required time (usually about 9am). Depending on the forecast, we may find a cove and anchor for a while or head back.
  • Depart the morning of Monday the 23rd for home.

There is still time! Get yourself a charter (or trailer your boat over) and join us! If you do, let me know you’re going to be in the area by emailing Commodore@ArizonaYachtClub.org or hailing our boat “Avalon” (Yes, that is the boat’s name) on 16 when you are underway!

 

Sail MORE! How to do an “Away Regatta”

Heather McClain poses overlooking the 11 Catalina 37 sailboats that LBYC charters for LBRW. AYC teams chartered two of the boats this year.

Team Cactus League—a group of Arizona Yacht Club members—chartered one of 11 Long Beach Yacht Club Catalina 37s for Long Beach Race Week, June 22-24.

We all had a great time and it wasn’t even that expensive to do. We all made more sailing friends and opened up more sailing opportunities around the country for ourselves.

We weren’t the only ones there, either. There was another C37 team from Arizona, headed up by John Riddell. Mike Hester brought his Viper, Joel Hurley and John Mayall from Phoenix and his daughter Sarah from Austin. Mike and Jo Grijalva were there with their boat Shockwave in the Random Leg Racing with an all-AZ crew. Mike and Maryellen Ferring and David Newland were there too, representing Arizona in the J/70 Fleet.

I want to talk a little about what our experience was, do some rough numbers, and maybe lower your anxiety level about traveling with your boat to other regattas.

LOGISTICS

Everybody but the afterguard on the Cactus League C37.

We have 10 people on the C37, and some “shore crew” (people who don’t race), so for our team, coordinating to get everyone to the dock and ready to race—all at the designated time—can be a bit challenging. With a crew of two-to-four people, this is obviously a bit easier. Everyone was responsible for their own travel to Long Beach, but we gave them the opportunity to car pool if they wanted.

We rented a house that (barely) held all of our crew and was pretty close to Long Beach Yacht Club. Depending on your preference, you could get a hotel or even camp, if that’s your thing. The house was nice because everyone came back and hung out in the hot tub and the kitchen. It also made coordinating everyone easier. I posted the regatta schedule in the kitchen with a note every morning about what time everyone had to be on the boat and ready to depart.

Because we were all in the same house, we made breakfast for the team. The regatta coordinated with a local grocery for a sandwich menu that we used for lunches on the boat. And there was food every night at the post-racing parties. We also had some beer, booze, soda and salty snacks at the house.

MONEY

Every year we create a “magic spreadsheet” to track expenses and payments. For the entire weekend the cost per person for a three-day boat charter, the race entry, the three-night stay at the house, and the food was right at $450/person. We personally spent about $120 in gas to get there and back, but that was for two people. Also, shore crew were spared boat expenses and paid just a portion of the house and food.

SAIL MORE!

Hopefully this lays out some of the details on how to have a successful “away” regatta.

I would encourage anyone who wants to get a group together to take boats out to a regatta to put it out there to the club. It was really fun to see our friends at an event and have us known as the “Arizona Yacht Club Group!” Many of our sailors go to the national and regional events for their fleets. Check your fleet’s website for information on those.

More on LBRW, including photos.

Here are some annual and upcoming opportunities in the region:

Colorado Governor’s Cup
Mission Bay One Design Regatta
San Diego NOOD
Marina Del Rey to San Diego (Hosted by Santa Monica Windjammers YC and Southwestern YC)
Newport to Ensanada
Fiesta Regatta (Colorado Sail and Yacht Club)

The crew of AYC’s Cactus League Catalina 37. From left: Dave and Stacey Haggart, Emory Heisler, New Jersey import Dave Rawstrom, Heather McClain, Toby Ambrose, Mike Parker (sitting), Josh McClain, Rob Gibbs, and Cindy Pillote.

 

Welcome to Long Beach.

 

 

 

 

Catalina Flotilla – UPDATE

Hi everyone!

We’ve seen quite a bit of interest for our Officially Unofficial Flotilla to Catalina the weekend of July 20th! People that are looking for crew, people that want to go but would like some crew, even people that might be interested in getting certified while heading over. In order to facilitate all of this, we’ve created a free sign up form. If you are even considering going, please fill it out and we’ll try to do some matchmaking and see that everyone that wants to go gets to go!

Looking forward to seeing everyone!

Catalina Sign-up

Avalon harbor on Catalina Island, a great charter destination. Photo: Ralph Vatalaro

Our Purpose

What do we do at the Arizona Yacht Club? If you asked ten people, you’d probably get five people that say “we race” and then you’d probably get five other answers. In undertaking the leadership of the club, I wanted to make sure that our new board was clear about our purpose. And when you read it, it will seem almost over-simplistic. The trouble is that without making a point of putting into words what we do, what our purpose is, we lose it.

I spent several weeks and talked with many different people about how to drill down and clarify what we do. It combines what we are passionate about, what we can be the best at, and what drives our club financially, all into one statement. This is your club, and now I want to share what we’ve worked on with you.

I identified that our purpose is to “Create the best sailing opportunities in the region, providing the highest value per member.”

This is the lens through which all activities and expenditures will be viewed. Our litmus test.

A few days ago, I had all the board members for the 2018-2019 board over to my house and we had a workshop to talk about what was important to us and how to “Create the best sailing opportunities in the region” and “provide the highest value per member.” We took the time to identify some focus areas for the coming year. They were:

  • Long-Term Planning
  • Reducing the Barriers to Entry to Sailing
  • Adding to our Social and Cruising Calendars
  • Creating Ways for our Junior Members to Participate

In order to keep you informed, I’m going to be writing on a regular basis using the “Commodore’s Corner” name plucked from the old Compass Points club magazine. We may also be reaching out for your opinion from time to time via email, survey, or phone call. This is your club and we want you to enjoy it! Please take the time to give us your feedback when you can.

I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve you as Commodore this year. You are always welcome to contact me directly any way you like.

Sail MORE!
Rob Gibbs