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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.

Crew Party at Scorpion September 8

By Heather McClain

This is the unofficial start of the sailing season in Phoenix! Need Crew? Want to crew on a boat?

Scorpion Bay Marina, Lake Pleasant

On Saturday, September 8, from 4-8 pm, we’ll toss a crew party at the end of E dock at Scorpion Bay Marina. The purpose of the event is to be a matchmaker between captains who need crew and crew who want to sail… and to just have a fun time with other sailors or those who are contemplating sailing.

  • Bring your boat! Show it off, brag, socialize, and go for a sail to test out crew/boat opportunities.
  • We have a few dock-friendly games such as corn hole, horseshoes, board games if you want.
  • Bring your own chairs! We have about eight already out there.
  • Arizona Yacht Club will serve hot dogs and hamburgers for everyone. Please bring a dish to share and BYOB. Can bring a bag of chips or get fancy. (Please connect with Heather McClain if you want to know more about what to bring, e.g. dessert vs side dish.)
  • We will have one electric grill and one electric smoker. No fires on the dock…oh my! You can have whatever grill/stove you want on your boat to add to cooking opportunities or not. Up to you.
  • Join the “Dockside Chat” with AYC Commodore Rob Gibbs.
  • There are a limited number of slips available for day use and/or overnight rental, please contact Sharon Bell if you are interested in that.
  • One boat owner has room on a boat for up to six people to sleep overnight.  And there may be other boat owners with available bunks. Just ask if you don’t want to (or can’t) drive home safely.
  • The rules of Scorpion Bay are to be respected as there are many boat owners out there. Good neighbor rules apply.

Here’s to a great (and safe) sailing season in Arizona!

Warm? How About a Weekend in the Pines?

Steve Nahkala works the barbeque.

As I write this, the temperature in Phoenix is flirting with 115 degrees and a weekend in the cool country of Northern Arizona sounds pretty nice.

The annual AYC Summer Campout (formerly the Kinnikinick campout) is Friday-Sunday, August 10-12 this year. No need to register; just show up in the cool pines.

Once again Steve Nahkala will be heading up the trip, which will be held at Dairy Springs Campground by Mormon Lake. Steve moved the gathering to this new spot a couple years ago and it’s more civilized than the traditional unimproved Kinnikinick site. People will begin to filter into the campsite Friday, ready to enjoy the beauty of the location and the fun gathering of AYCers and friends. The activities are as rustic as the surroundings, with “pasture golf” and horse shoes and Liar’s Dice.

Here’s much more information on the event, including map directions.

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!

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!

 

Wednesday Beer Can Racing

Wednesday Beer Can Racing ~ Photo by Marc Danner

Wednesday night was the first of many hot nights out at Tempe Town Lake. The wind started to build out of the west with gusts of around 10kts.

Two boats started on the line with the one minute “call out” by the Ferrings. We were able to get in four races before they had to dash off for the Phoenix Mercury game!

This is great, low-pressure racing before next season. So if you just bought a boat or have one in the garage, come on out, hone your skills and have fun!

See you on the water next Wednesday. Here’s further information.

Marc Danner

Wednesday Beer Can Racing

Wednesday night organizer George Sheller. Photo: Mike FerringWhat are you doing Wednesday night? How about coming out for some highly casual racing at Tempe Town Lake?

We start racing at 5:30 and go until sundown. We do a one minute sequence. I have a whistle and signal: 5 short blasts is “AP down,” followed by a 10 second gap, then one long as the start of the one-minute countdown. I try to give 3 shorts at 30 seconds, 2 at 20, 1 at 10 and then one long for the start. A single 360 turn clears penalties. We set short courses, so we’ve gotten up to seven races in. If the Ferrings are there, we use their automated starting gadget.

This started as a Laser thing, but others started coming out, which was great. We all start together.

This is not an official AYC event, so you’re on your own in terms of a boat, liability and fun. We start promptly at 5:30 pm and if you miss one or two races it’s no big deal since we don’t keep scores. This is good practice, with bragging rights and then (for those who want to) off to a local restaurant for dinner and drinks.

Have questions?  Email me.

See you out there,
George Sheller

Commodore’s Party Draws Nice Crowd

David Newland, the recipient of our award for Most Valuable Player. Photo: Mike Ferring

You have a new Board of Directors at the helm after the Commodore’s Celebration Saturday night (5/19). The changeover to the new crew went very well, with over 70 members turning out for the party at The Yard in Tempe.

The formal part of the event is the installation of the board and new Commodore Rob Gibbs and the awarding of trophies and offering thanks to the people who made last year work so well. This year’s US Sailing Sportsmanship Award recipient is David Newland, who did such amazing work to get our Lake Pleasant boats in shape and keeping them that way in his role as Lake Captain. Here’s a lot more description of what David did this last year.

After a vote of the jury, George Tingom will get to keep Ye Olde Blunder Bucket another few months and we hope he takes better care of it than he has lately. You see, part of the responsibility of receiving this coveted trophy is its care and feeding—keeping it prominently displayed on one’s mantle. After winning the prize in December, George instead kept it in his car! Nominated for this transgression—and then foolishly trying to defend doing it—won it again for George.

Ethan Wei accepts the trophy for Most Improved Junior. Photo: Mike Ferring

The Wayne Jason Tucker Award for Outstanding Junior went to Myles Danner. The Jerry Lindeman Award for Most Improved Junior went to Ethan Wei and Matthew Haggart. The Heavy Lifting Award for contribution to ASF went to Mike Parker, who took over the High School Sailing Team this year.

Photos by Mike Ferring and various others who picked up his camera when needed:

 

 

 

Watch the AYC Champ Race on a Party Boat

Watch six AYC fleet champs duke it out for the coveted Club Championship trophy. Defending champ (and Sport Boat fleet champ) Mike Hester goes up against a field of excellent sailors in a round-robin competition using Thistles.

2018 Club Championship entrants are: Thistle Fleet Champion, Scott Richards; Capri 14.2, Dave Haggart; Catalina 22, Steve Grothe; Laser, Joel Hurley; Multi-Hull, Brett Johnston; Portsmouth, Mike Parker; PHRF Spin, Martin Lorch; and Reigning Club Champion/PHRF Sport Boat, Mike Hester. Steve Grothe and Brett Johnston are not able to make the race, reducing the expected entry to six.

Champ Party Boat Signup

Fleet Captain George Sheller will take you around the course on a luxury pontoon boat and position you for best viewing at the start and rounding marks. Bring snacks and beverages and cheer on your favorite.

One of the Scorpion rental pontoon boats.

The races will be Saturday, May 12, beginning about 9 am and continuing until a champ has been selected. That could be as many as seven races, but often is five or six.

The party boat will leave Scorpion at about 1 pm to see as many races as remain at that time, including the choice of a champ. The boat is expected to be a 24-foot luxury pontoon boat with cushy seats.

George needs at least 12 people to sign up for the boat in order to cover the rental. The price per person is $25.

2017 Club Champs Mike Hester and John Mayall with the big cup. Photo: Mike Ferring

It Was a Hoot at the Lake

Brats, buddies, and boats. We called it Hoot at the Lake and about 50 people turned out for a fun few hours at Tempe Town Lake Saturday (9/30).

The wind was light, but it didn’t deter lots of us from sampling a buffet of sailboats, including O’Pen Bics, Lasers, 14.2s, and Mike Bernard’s nice Sabot. Rob Gibbs brought two Desert Sailboats SUP boards to try. Sharon Bell brought games. Martin Lorch tended the BBQ. The Ferrings brought the food. Mike Bernard floated the boats. Andy Oliver was event chairman and supplied the tow vehicle.

Will Zornik and kids brought out the O’Pen Bics and had a ball sailing and flipping them. Photo: Mike Ferring

Some of the group gathered by the dock at Tempe Town Lake. Photo: Mike Ferring

The wind came in small puffs most of the day, but it was still fun to try different boats. Photo: Maryellen Ferring

A lazy day and no rush to get to the water. Photo: Mike Ferring

The shaded area by the east dock proved to be an excellent place to hang out. Photo: Mike Ferring

Picnic, Play, Party at the “Hoot at the Lake”

All for fun: The Hoot at the Lake party on Saturday, September 30, from 10am to 1pm at the Grassy Knoll at Tempe Town Lake.

Mike Bernard has planned a bunch of zany sailing games for  the Hoot, including such things as backward sailing, competition pitting 50+ codgers and kids, and some SUP board rides.

Sharon Bell is bringing her Corn Hole game and Horseshoes for dry land play.

Maryellen Ferring is heading up the food brigade, planning a barbecue at lake’s edge.

Andy Oliver is the Chairman in Chief.

There’s no charge and no registration to attend. Just drop by and have fun.

All of this rises out of that survey you completed this summer. You said you’d like more social events in the club. About half the people who responded to the survey said they’d come to a pure social gathering like this one.

Fun sailing on Tempe Town Lake. Photo: Debbra Heisler

Cool Weekend in the Pines

Nothing like a fistful of s’mores to bring the giggle to the campfire. Photo: Mike Ferring

The new AYC summer campout location works just fine: Dairy Springs Campground near Mormon Lake can be reached by paved roads, offers running water and permanent (if rustic) toilets, and even has nearby cabins for softies like your Commodore. It doesn’t have the aura of a tricky, hard-to-spell name like Kinnikinick, but that’s easy to overlook.

What hasn’t changed is a significant drop in temperature from the 100s of Phoenix to the 70s of the high country and the collection of friends ready to shoot the breeze, hike the hills, and take your 75¢ stake at Liar’s Dice. Add intervals of soothing rain and a hot grill to cook your dinner and this is a fun, casual, relaxing couple days.

Credit Steve, Angela and Kenneth for pulling it together once again and for talking the rest of us into dropping in.

Scroll down to see a slide show of pictures from Mike Ferring.

The traditional game of Liar’s Dice brings lots of laughs to an afternoon at the campground. Photo: Mike Ferring


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maryellen and Mike Ferring mug for the camera while Steve Nahkala prepares a traditional breakfast. Photo: Dennis Lynde

Commodore’s Celebration at The Yard in Tempe

Registration is now closed for this event.

This is the social event of the year for the Arizona Yacht Club, a gathering of friends highlighted by presentation of trophies and installation of the 2017-2018 Board of Directors.

Dress is business casual. Members and nonmembers are welcome to attend. Cocktails at 6:30 pm, dinner at 7 pm.

Here’s a link to the Google map of the location.

The menu includes:

  • Caesar Salad
  • Soft Pretzels and Provolone Fondu
  • Fried Chicken with Biscuits, Snow Peas
  • Roasted Salmon with Cauliflower, Snow Peas
  • Baked Penne Pasta with Butternut Cream Sauce, Roasted Squash, Red Pepper, Herbed Ricotta
  • Dessert

And then, they became pirates.

It happens every year—at a time of goodwill and peace on earth, normally pleasant AYC sailors release their inner Kraken and go for the things in shiny wrappings. The 2016 Party was no different and for all who were there, you can be a pirate till race season starts again. If you missed it, put down the eye patch, fold the Jolly Roger and promise you will never miss the party again.

Commodore Bruce Andress started the evening dressed in his signature “Santa on Vacation” outfit. New club members were welcomed followed by a well-received presentation of things to come in 2017. Bill and Barbara Cunningham presented a stunningly long line of new burgees they had collected over the summer. Thank you!

The Trophy presentation followed with the giant Governor’s Cup going to Paul Miachika and the brand new AYC Governor’s Cup rodeo buckles to Mike Hester (Monohull) and Brett Johnston (Multihull).

Fleet Captain John Riddell then demonstrated that PowerPoint is not a fossilized relic and can still be used to show strangely bizarre pictures of the Commodore motor racing, the Vice Commodore dancing in Seoul, the Rear Commodore looking like Warren Beatty (or was it George Hamilton?).

John went on to introduce the new Regatta formats for 2017 and beyond, including a new Ruth Beals format, the Triple Crown, and other “From the fertile mind of the Fleet Captain—this is going to be fun!” Stay tuned.

Bruce then started the “gift exchange/pirates gone wild” highlight of the evening. With over 50 gifts exchanged, most pirated several times, the action was fast and at times hysterical. Strangely, Bethany Tuvene could not hang on to a bottle of booze to save her life. In the end, she did walk away with a Jim Beam Honey.

And then there was the Blunder Bucket. The nominations for the most blunderesque moments were several, but there was a clear winner from the start. Two GovCups ago there was a SolCat upside down jammed against the dam. This time the nomination was to the same person, different boat! The SolCat was replaced by an awesome Nacra Inter 20 and on the drive home after the first time out sailing it, amazingly a set of very pricey composite sails somehow ended up on the freeway! A trashed jib was recovered but the main was never seen again. And the winner is: Josh Kimble! Well done, kiddo! Previous BB winners are proud of you!

Here are some really mediocre photos. The prestigious “Official Club Photographer” position, by the way, is open. If you do have some quality images, please share!

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Commodore Bruce doing his best MC
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Josh, Brett and John. Brett with his new rodeo buckle.
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Mike telling new Viper owner Freddy, “You too can have a rodeo buckle one day.”
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A table full of pirates with two hulls.

 

Cool Summer Camp-Out August 12-14

What, a more civilized summer camp-out? Organizer Steve Nahkala this year will move the AYC weekend in the pines from its traditional Kinnikinick spot to the Dairy Springs Campground. The new spot has amenities the old one doesn’t have. A paved road. Permanent toilets. Get this: running water. Clearly Steve’s getting soft.

But you can count on the features that has made Kinnikinick an AYC fixture, which boils down to hanging out with good friends in a cool place for a couple days. Swapping stories and playing silly games, headlined by Liar’s Dice and Pasture Golf.

Here’s much more on the event, including its history and what to expect.

In this historic shot, Bill Hutchinson waves hello.

In this historic shot, Bill Hutchinson waves hello.

Commodore’s Party 2016

Your new AYC Board of Directors is in charge now, taking office amid shiny classic cars at the annual Commodore’s Party held this year at the Martin Auto Museum. Here are some shots by Mike Ferring:

The new Commodore is Bruce Andress; Vice Commodore is Victor Felice; Rear Commodore Jason Donkersley; Senior Staff Commodore Peter Lehrach; Junior Staff Commodore Chris Smith; Racing Fleet Captain John Riddell; Cruising Fleet Captain Tom Errickson; and Membership Directors Bob Whyte and Mark Howell. Tony Chapman will continue as Treasurer and the board has not chosen a Secretary.

The evening’s top award, the US Sailing Sportsmanship Award, was presented to Wendy Larsen for her willingness to jump in and help (including organizing the Commodore’s Party). Paul Miachika received the big punch bowl for Club Champion, accepted by his crew, Rob Gibbs. The Blunder Bucket went to Chris Smith, pretty much for being Chris Smith, but specifically for launching his spinnaker upside down.

ASF President Cindy Pillote recognized Scott Burkhardt for his considerable work organizing ASF’s educational programs, presenting him with the “Heavy Lifting” award. George Tingom was given a special award for his hard work and dedication to ASF over the years. Ethan Swartz received the Linderman Most Improved Junior award and Ema and Wilson Davis got the Wayne Jason Tucker Outstanding Junior Award.

 

Jolly Buccaneer Christmas Party 2015

AYC Christmas 2015-3

The “before” picture.

When the package were all unwrapped and the gifts “pirated” and pirated again, all that was left was a warm glow, lots of good memories and a stack of debris.

Who was pirated most? Close call between Larry Green and Victor Felice, mostly exchanges that determined what would end up in their liquor cabinets.

In a close race, Paul Liszewski was elected to Ye Olde Blunder Bucket, one of AYC’s highest honors. Paul was chosen for the act of driving his Hobie 33, Rollin’ in the Deep, into one of Lake Pleasant’s many submerged islands. At high speed. An estimated 8 knots. Blam! Rollin’ in the Not Deep Enough. Paul’s been an AYC member for nearly 25 years and this was his first Blunder “win.”

Thanks to Tom Errickson for emceeing the show, to Jim Brewer of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society for making an appeal for Leukemia Cup entries and LLS donations, to catamaran Fleet 42 for showing up to cheer on Governor’s Cup winner Jim Tomes, and to a lively crowd of AYC people. Photos below from Mike Ferring:

Ready for Some Kool Kinnikinick Kamping?

Steve Nahkala works the barbeque at Kinnikinick.

Steve Nahkala works the barbeque at Kinnikinick.

The annual Kinnikinick weekend is Friday-Sunday, July 31-August 2 this year. No need to register; just show up in the cool pines of Northern Arizona.

Once again Steve Nahkala will be heading up the trip to the cool and people will begin to filter into the campsite Friday, ready to enjoy the remote beauty of the location and the fun gathering of AYCers and friends. The activities are as rustic as the surroundings, with “pasture golf” and horse shoes and Liar’s Dice.

Here’s much more information on the event, including map directions.