Meetings RSS feed for this section

August Meeting: Ocean Cleanup

By Debbie Heisler

4Ocean, cleaning the stuff that’s clogging the world’s oceans.

How will we clean up the mess that’s destroying our oceans? At August’s monthly meeting, Emilie Johnsen of 4ocean will tell us how their organization is attacking this massive problem.

It reminds me of that phrase, “In for a penny, in for a pound.” Or “If you’re going to take a risk at all, you might as well make it a big risk.”

It seems to me that the founders of this ocean cleanup company made a decision to take a big risk in an effort to start cleaning up the ocean one pound at a time. 4ocean employs people to remove trash from the ocean and coastlines while inspiring and educating others to work for cleaner oceans.

Emilie’s August speaking assignment: “Marine debris as a global issue, why it’s important to everyone, and what we can do to help every day.”

She says, “Plastic doesn’t only impact the ocean and marine life but people as well; plastic pollution has become both an environmental and socioeconomic issue that we can change for the better.”

Emilie’s the Education Supervisor at 4ocean and oversees all education initiatives and programs. She received her Master’s in Marine Biology at Nova Southeastern University, and uses her knowledge of marine ecosystems, plastic pollution, and recycling to help the company represent as the global leader in marine debris solutions.

She’s clearly not afraid of the big risk, telling us, “From reducing our single-use plastic to learning how to properly recycle, we can help guide you in the right direction! The ocean is the resource of all life on Earth. In order to protect ourselves, we must first protect the ocean.”

The meeting is Tuesday, August 13, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are now held at R.T. O’Sullivans at the corner of Hayden and Thomas. Both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

Over 90 People at July Meeting!

A combination of our Amazing Speakers – Rear Commodore Deb Heisler and Former Commodore and USCG Capt Emory Heisler – and our new venue at R.T. O’Sullivans we had a turnout of over 90 people last night at our monthly meeting! Deb and Emory relayed their experiences on delivering northerly and southerly routes, with destinations including New York Harbor, BVI, Bermuda, and even Nova Scotia. Many people had dinner and beverages and so far the feedback about the food and service has been positive.

Every member has gotten an email survey link on the event. Even if you didn’t go, please take a look and answer the applicable questions. We know that the audio system had a technical problem, so we skipped that question this time, but we’ll add it back in once we work to get that problem fixed.

“Dog Watch” at R.T. O’Sullivans

AYC Members got their first “taste” of our new Regular Meeting Venue, R.T. O’Sullivans in Scottsdale on Thursday night. Around 40 members and potential members showed up for fun, food, and camaraderie. The feedback was very positive! We’re looking forward to having our first Membership Meeting there next week on the 9th of July!

Members and Friends gather to partake of the Fellowship

 

Many of the usual “Pirates” approved of the new location!

Lots of positive feedback about the food!

New Home for our Membership Meetings!

At the last meeting, the current management at Rolling Hills Golf Course asked us (and the LPSC) to remove our trophies and trophy cases and to remove our gear from their storage area. If you were there you noticed that there was a Golf League event scheduled at the same time as our meeting. They are making changes that will help them succeed as a Golf Venue and of course we want them to succeed!

But what is best for Rolling Hills isn’t necessarily the best for the AYC. The board has come to the decision that it is time to part ways with Rolling Hills. We wish them the best, but we feel there are other options that will better fit our needs.

I’m pleased to announce that we’ve been working with R.T. O’Sullivans at the corner of Hayden and Thomas to have our meetings there.

Why did we choose this location?

  • Not far from our current location.
  • Easy access to the highway.
  • A great, affordable Regular Menu.
  • Amazing specials (Tuesday’s are 2 for 1 Burgers!)
  • Flexible space that allows us to have our regular meetings or scale up to large meetings when we need it.
  • An in house AV System that allows us to mitigate noise issues and easily have speakers and presentations.
  • Plenty of parking.
  • The management and staff are really friendly and glad to have us there.

We are holding our next “Dog Watch” Happy Hour there on Thursday the 27th of June starting around 5:30 pm as they always do going until whenever! (The kitchen closes at Midnight and they kick everyone out at 2 am!) We hope you come out and check it out!

Our next General Membership Meeting is on Tuesday the 9th of July and will be held at this new location.

We will be soliciting feedback via email survey from all members about their experience in order to work with RT O’Sullivan’s management to make this a great change for us.

Your feedback will determine if we stay or if we go, so please come out and support Your Arizona Yacht Club as we make this very important change.

THANKS

Rob Gibbs
Commodore
Arizona Yacht Club

May Meeting – Pretty as a Picture

We had so many photos from the Tall Cactus and so many people asking for them we’re doing a GIVEAWAY at the May Monthly Meeting of a gift card to Canvas Prints so you can take whatever photo you’ve seen on the website or floating around Facebook and turn it into something real!

Our Tall Cactus Photographer, Krisitin Lisson and our very own unofficial Club Photographer, Mike Ferring have agreed to, at no charge, give the winner any photo they want at full resolution so you can make it a keepsake forever.

We’ll have a slideshow of the full set of photos from Tall Cactus running at the meeting so come and enjoy seeing yourself and your friends on the water!

Oh, and the By-Laws require me to also mention that we are doing the official BoD Election Ballot Counting at the meeting as well. No spoilers, but there are some clear winners emerging!

April’s Meeting – Full of Questions!

We hosted what seems to be an Annual Trivia Challenge for the April meeting – complete with cash prizes for the winners! Teams were grouped by table and the trivia was put together by your Rear Commodore Joshua McClain with the help of his wife and Cruising Fleet Captain Heather McClain. Questions ranged from questions about the Olympics to questions about our own club. For the full PDF of the questions, Click Here.

The Ultimate Winners of the Competition, dubbed “Tom’s Table”

The “Little Table” of New Member Nelson Passos and Bob LaBine

“The Bar Team” – Runners up…

The “Big Table” had some heavy hitters but couldn’t quite eek out “Team Bar”

February Meeting: John Jourdane

Whitbread Round the World Race On “Fisher & Paykel, New Zealand” 

With John Jourdane  

John Jourdane – Photo Sailing World

Experience one of the most grueling yacht races on earth. 33,000 miles and nine months of sailing through storms, blizzards and icebergs.  Climb aboard 82-foot “Fisher & Paykel, New Zealand” with author and world-famous sailor-navigator, John Jourdane, who will recount his around the world race through a video of his experience.

The meeting is Tuesday, February 12, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at The Grill @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

 

Merry Christmas AYC

A big, festive crowd turned out for the December AYC Christmas/Holiday party (12/11), with over 50 gifts tossed into the Buccaneer Gift Exchange. Commodore Santa Rob Gibbs presided over the madness, and as usual, the favorite gift of choice was a bottle of something containing alcohol.

Cindy Pillote hands over her mother’s handmade quilt to high bidders Emory and Debbra Heisler. The proceeds go to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Photo: Mike Ferring

Since we’re getting a jump on the Birthday Regatta & Leukemia Cup auction, Maryellen Ferring auctioned off a handmade quilt created by Cindy Pillote’s mother, with the proceeds going to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Debbra and Emory Heisler were the high bidders at $1,000. People also bought a couple dozen Birthday Regatta souvenir technical shirts and various other silent auction items.

Rob also presented the giant Governor’s Cup trophy to Joel Hurley and crew Grant Younger and quickly declared Ye Blunder Bucket voting over by choosing George Tingom as the winner for not showing up or returning the Bucket for this round of voting. Remember your other Blunder nominations for the next round at the Commodore’s Celebration in May.

Tony Chapman opens a gift of a racing board game. Tony didn’t keep it long since it was quickly “pirated.” Photo: Mike Ferring

Santa Rob awards the huge Governor’s Cup trophy to Joel Hurley and Grant Younger. Photo: Mike Ferring

Angela Hutchinson reveals one of the more than 50 gifts of the night. Photo: Mike Ferring

 

The Big Holiday Party

December’s membership meeting brings the annual AYC gift exchange, a gift exchange with a twist. You might say twisted, even. Dinner begins at 6pm with the gift exchange starting at 7 pm, Tuesday, December 11, at the Caddy Shack @ Rolling Hills, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe.

Here’s how the gift exchange works:

  • You bring a wrapped gift valued at about $20.
  • You pick a number from a hat to determine the order we select gifts.
  • We’ll have two people called to the front of the room at the same time.
  • Each person can choose to pick a wrapped gift from the pile or play pirate and take the gift from someone who’s already opened one.
  • Gifts can be “pirated” only twice before they’re safe from further theft.

Some of the gifts can be pretty weird, but if you’re looking for a prized gift suggestion: Liquor always seems to bring applause!

We’ve set a menu that evening to make it easy for everyone:

BBQ Pork and Chicken
Mac & Cheese
Cole Slaw
Cornbread
Non-Alcoholic drink included

$13 for Adults and $7 for kids

Just so we have a good idea of the numbers, please RSVP to Commodore Rob Gibbs. You need not pay in advance…

Rogue Tomato – October Happy Hour!

We’re going WEST with this month’s 4th Tuesday Happy Hour on Tuesday October 23rd. This month we’ll be at Rogue Tomato! 18561 N 59th Ave #122, Glendale, AZ 85308. Starts at 5:30(ish) and goes until 8:00(ish). As always AYC will spring for some appetizers and you are welcome to wash it down with whatever you like!

AYC 4th Tuesday Happy Hour – Fibber Magees in Chandler

This month we’re digging deep… deep into the East Valley that is! Come join us for libations and camaraderie at Fibber Magees in Chandler: 1989 West Elliot Road, Chandler, AZ 85224 on Tuesday Sept 25th at about 5:30 to about whenever. As usual, the club will spring for some appetizers and we’ll all enjoy the fellowship! Click the link below to add it to your Google Calendar!

Crew Party with a Cause!!

The first crew party held at the lake was a really great gathering! Lots of people, both members and potential members got together, shared their sailing experiences and a great meal.

The event also had a 50/50 raffle to benefit the Blind Buccaneers. We raised a little over $160 towards their trip. They are fundraising through the end of October. If you would like to support them but were not at the event, donations are eligible for an Arizona Tax Credit (see your tax adviser for more details!)

Much thanks goes to Sharon Bell, and Heather and Josh McClain for organizing the event!

 

Buzzing Sailing Jeopardy

By Sharon Bell

While several members were traveling or doing regular summer “stuff,” there was a great group of members who came for cheer, chat and Sailing Jeopardy! at the July monthly meeting.

Terry made special cocktails behind the bar and Mike Parker proved to be a fantastically funny host and narrator for the game. There were four easy targets…oh…I mean “contestants” who volunteered to answer expertly crafted questions in the true spirit of Jeopardy.

The contestants for the evening were Josh McClain, Kenneth Nahkala, Joel Hurley and a new member Alec Milstein!

Josh McClain had a buzzer that made off-putting noises and Mike liked to magnify the noises on the microphone. Sorry folks…you just needed to be there for the sound effects since we all know that what happens at meetings…stays at meetings.

Josh enjoyed hitting his buzzer (probably just to make noise but answered questions too) and stayed in the lead until the finish for a $50 gift card to take his beautiful wife and daughter out to dinner. Yup…Josh…that is the agreement I heard! Alec, Joel, and Kenneth crossed the finish line in a photo finish for $25 gift certificates for their courage and competitive spirit in true AYC style. Thanks again to Mike Parker for making this evening perfect.

Next month, we want to invite ALL of the new members for a social meet and greet to set the stage for a great year of sailing opportunities, friendship opportunities, and tons of laughter. Heather and I will be reaching out to a few of our members for pictures and spotlight information so we can get to know each other better. Stay tuned…it will be fun.

July Meeting: Sailing Jeopardy Game

Rear Commodore Sharon “Alex Trebek” Bell. Photo: Mike Ferring

Category: July
Question: Sailing Jeopardy
Answer: What’s a Fun Game to Play at the Next Monthly Meeting?

Got it? Sharon ” Alex Trebek” Bell is whipping up a bunch of head scratchers for you to answer just for fun at the meeting. Come ready to play.

The meeting is Tuesday, July 10, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at Aces @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

June Monthly Meeting: Extreme Sailing!

Alinghi at speed. Photo: Mike Ferring

When Matt Reynolds introduced us to Extreme Sailing at a monthly meeting last year, more than a dozen AYC members took up the invitation to see the October races in San Diego.

In June, Matt will be back with a highlight reel of stories from the first event.

Watching from the shore is free, but a bunch of us from AYC paid for the upgrade to ride on the wild, foiling GC32 catamarans during racing. What a kick! I was hanging onto the tramp of the French-shouting Swiss entry Alinghi as the crew scrambled around me, ducking flying lines and trying to keep up with the radical speed of the race. I highly recommend it.

Eat well at the VIP Extreme Club. Two Silver Passes will be auctioned at the June AYC Monthly Meeting.

Second best: A Silver Pass that offers entry into the VIP viewing area just off the finish line with great food and open bar, television coverage, the skippers’ news conference, a technical tour of a GC32, and (if you’d like), a RIB ride during racing. The Silver Passes are $350 each and we’ll auction off a pair of them at the meeting to benefit AYC’s 2019 Birthday Regatta & Leukemia Cup. Come ready to bid!

The meeting is Tuesday, June 12, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at Aces @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

 

Against the backdrop of the city of San Diego, the Extreme Sailing series in October 2017. Photo: Mike Ferring

Extreme Sailing action near the finish in San Diego. This sort of close and wild action was typical. Photo: Mike Ferring

The GC32 catamarans fly on foils. Photo: Mike Ferring

May Meeting: Weather for Sailors

Consider this quote from one of the most experienced navigators in the world: “To a sailor, understanding weather is as important as boat preparation and knowing how to tack.”

John Jourdane. Photo: Sailing World

The navigator is John Jourdane and the quote introduces the book, Modern Weather for Sailors. It also introduces our May monthly meeting speaker, that same guy and the book’s author, John Jourdane.

The meeting is Tuesday, May 8, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at Aces @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

You may remember John from his November 2013 visit, when he regaled the club with stories of his travels. He’s sailed over 300,000 miles, covering the distance between the West Coast and Hawaii 54 times, crossing the Atlantic Ocean 12 times, and sailing around the world three times, including two Whitbread Round the World Races.

How’s that for preparation for explaining (briefly) this complex subject: weather and how it affects sailors.

 

John Jourdane’s book on sailing weather.

April Monthly Meeting: Spectacular Sailing Photography

Photographer Daniel Forster

Daniel Forster will arrive at our April monthly meeting armed with a spectacular portfolio of sailing photos and a lifetime of sailing stories. Just to skim some off the top: He’s photographed the last 13 America’s Cups and 12 Olympic Games.

Now Daniel is one of the official photographers for the Rolex Yachting events, covering such regattas as the Rolex Miami Olympic Class Regatta, St. Thomas, New York Yacht Club events, Rolex Fastnet Race, Rolex Big Boat Series in San Francisco, Rolex Swan Cup, Rolex Middle Sea Race and the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

Take a look at his website. Or watch this Vimeo video for a taste of great images.

Daniel will be our monthly meeting speaker Tuesday, April 10, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at Aces restaurant (that’s apparently what they’re calling it now) at Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

A J Boat against a brilliant sky. Photo: Daniel Forster

The amazing Comanche at speed. Photo: Daniel Forster

Blasting through the seas against granite skies at the Fastnet. Photo: Daniel Forster

Do You Daydream of Tropical Sailing?

And if not, why not?

One of the great benefits of knowing how to sail is access to gorgeous yachts in beautiful places. Clear green water, steady trade breeze, warm evenings with a  piña colada. Mmmm. Oops, sorry, I drifted off there for a minute.

You’ve seen the tantalizing beauty shots in sailing magazines. At the next AYC monthly meeting, Tom White of The Moorings yacht charters will tap into your wanderlust and show you how to make the fantasy come true.

Tom will be our monthly meeting speaker Tuesday, March 13, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at Aces restaurant (that’s apparently what they’re calling it now) at Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

A Moorings charter catamaran saunters through a typical BVI backdrop in a typical BVI breeze.

What’s it like to sail the Oracle Team USA cat?

Hard. Very hard. And complicated.

Speaking to February’s AYC monthly meeting, Oracle Team USA tactician Andrew Campbell said that despite the level of competition, sailing is sailing, with tactics similar to the ones he started learning as a Sabot sailor in San Diego almost three decades ago. The rest? Sailing the America’s Cup boat in Bermuda required a level of fitness unmatched in sailing, pumping maximum heart rate through a 20-minute race, dashing in coordinated choreography across the platform, and keeping the boat flying with controls less sophisticated than a foiling moth.

The complexity of the boat was amazing, for instance offering the ability to fine-tune the shape of the wing by adjusting camber differently from top to bottom depending on wind conditions. The team collected immense amounts of data that they spent hours analyzing in order to improve speed and handling.

In the end, of course, it wasn’t enough, but Andrew believes that Oracle Team USA might have been able to overcome Emirates Team New Zealand if they’d been able to compete in wind conditions more suited to their boat. More wind or less wind, he says, would have moved ETNZ out of its sweet spot and moved Oracle into its design target, enabling the US team to overcome the excellent sailing and design of the Kiwis.

How about the next America’s Cup in Auckland? The planned design will be a huge challenge, he says, but the boats will be fast and more maneuverable, with less energy spent pumping oil through the hydraulic system and more spent sailing. Watch for the personable and able Andrew Campbell to be part of it all.

 

Andrew Campbell at February’s AYC meeting. Photo: David Newland

 

February: Oracle’s Andrew Campbell

Andrew Campbell

Five years ago, Olympic Laser sailor Andrew Campbell spoke to us at the Arizona Yacht Club. Now he’s been gracious enough to agree to a repeat visit, only this time he’s coming off an intense time as one of the tacticians for the Oracle Team USA America’s Cup campaign and one of the commentators for the television coverage of the event.

In 2016 he explained his America’s Cup role to Scuttlebutt, saying, “On the water I monitor multiple boats to make sure that we’re efficiently using our time. It doesn’t sound too bad until you consider that I’m also helping the mode choices for our boat, checking relatives against the other boat… and grinding our wingsheet, taking breaks while sprinting across the platform to the new helm to help steer through tacks and gybes.”

Andrew will be our monthly meeting speaker Tuesday, February 13, beginning at 7pm (but arrive early for dinner). Monthly meetings are held at the Caddy Shack @ Rolling Hills Golf Course, 1415 North Mill Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85281-1205 (map) and both members and non-members are welcome to attend.

After earning a spot as a four-time All-American at Georgetown University, Andrew went on to compete in the Laser class at the 2008 Olympics. (He met his wife, Jacqueline Schmitz, at Georgetown, where they were both members of the sailing team. They now have twin girls.)

The Campbells are a sailing family. Andrew’s father, Bill Campbell, is a three-time America’s Cup sailor who was part of Bill Koch’s team that won the Cup in 1992. Bill is also a former Commodore of the San Diego Yacht Club.

USA Today quoted Bill Campbell saying his son’s mantra during his sailing career has been, “Keep showing up.” He tells a story of Andrew driving home from high school in La Jolla, Calif., and stopping at Mission Bay Yacht Club, where he kept a Laser.

“He’d stop, put the boat in the water, go out, tack a hundred times, jibe a hundred times, put the boat away and come home. He did that all the time,” Bill Campbell said.

“You keep showing up; you keep practicing. By showing up all the time, you’re doing more than the other guys. You’re getting better, and hopefully the results will show that. His commitment to the sport and his commitment to doing that was always impressive to me.”

Andrew Campbell (center) grinding in Bermuda.