The Commodore's Crow's Nest - June 2012
The summer lesson schedule is off to a great start.
Both lessons were full. Bob Graves brought some new
teaching techniques back from Padre Island that proved
to be very effective getting students up and sailing.
There are pictures and narrative about the lesson
in this newsletter and on Facebook. SPSC also added
more new members at the lessons. I want to thank Mark
and Kathy Voigt, Charlie Yontz, Bill Olson, Linda
Downey, Tina Mazanek, Mark Powell, Richard Hill, Scott
and Julea Williams, Nora Loyd, Chris Graves and our
Lessons Leader, Bob Graves for helping make these
so successful. If I left anyone out, I apologize.
The names are from memory. The memory chips are old.
The NIMBY is coming to
town beginning this Friday. Er, that is if you live
in Panama City. This is a long standing event/tradition
that to me serves at least two purposes. One, the
locals at Shell Point will have to find something
else to do for entertainment. SPSC won't be there.
Two, the backyard we invade, in this case the Panama
City Yacht Club, will never be the same. Come join
us for sailing, socializing, sipping the infamous
Finney punch, sampling the hors d'oeuvres and soaking
up the sun and fun at Shell Island. The details are
all presented in the NIMBY
link on our website.
While it is still months away, the Endless Summer
regatta is on my mind. Why? The Commodore is responsible
for organizing this event and I was reminded that
I am the Commodore (see earlier reference to old memory).
So mark your calendars and reserve the weekend of
September 28th thru the 30th for the “Last”
(according to Mayan calendars) Endless Summer Regatta.
Also, please join us at the monthly SPSC general meeting
at Beef O'Brady's this Tuesday, June 12th.
'Til then, festoons!!
Submitted by Bob Andrews, Commodore
XVI - Panama City, FL
NIMBY XVI, the 16th Annual "Not In My Back Yard"
Road Trip Regatta, is scheduled for Friday, June
15 – Sunday, June 17, 2012. It has now been sixteen
years since we conceived the concept of taking our show on
the road to different venues. This year, we're again returning
to the scene of some of our best regattas, Panama City, FL.
We have participated in events in Panama City for years, from
the old Shell Island Shot in the 1980s to Rude Roy's Power
Run in the 1990s to our own NIMBY events in the 2000s. We
extend a special invitation to our sailing friends from the
Florida Panhandle, and to the Atlanta and Charleston sailors,
to join us at this year's NIMBY location. From the restored
old downtown section of Panama City to the beautiful water
and beaches of St. Andrews Bay, there will also be plenty
for the non-sailor to do. Check out the complete details
for the event.
Kids Lessons Days
by Bob Graves
Click Image for Larger View
a great day we had on the beach for our first kids’
day. Thanks to all the trainers, Tina, Bob A., Bill,
Mark Powell, Charlie, Nora and thanks to Juile for filling
out the Presidential Fitness awards and to my brother
Chris for rescuing one of our young sailors, Matt, as
he headed towards Cuba, with dreams of revolution and
a Marxist utopia.
The kids seemed to have a great time and the smiles
on the parent’s faces was even better. The kids
took their initial lessons and then kept coming back
to go out and sail some more. Summer was worried about
going out on the board alone, so Tina jumped on the
board and sailed a little bit with her. Summer came
flying back in on the board herself. The ages were from
five to thirteen and they all listened and performed
admirably. Even when the kids weren’t sailing
they were having a great time playing together on boards
without sails and just swimming.
Please check out the pictures on our Facebook
page and the video
of young Kelci, 13, uphauling the sail and taking
off like a pro.
Our Caravan to Corpus
(Click on images for larager view) Go to our FACEBOOK
page to see the full Corpus Christi photo album.
Bill is from Corpus Christi and has sailed out there several
times. He mentioned that he would like to get a group trip
out there. The group that tripped out there was Perry, Bill,
and Bob G.
took off Saturday morning, May 12, at 6am from Bill’s.
Y’all have heard of ATVs, WMDs, and BVDs, but we drove
out in a MMV aka a MIGHTY MINI VAN!! The van was setup with
air mattress in the back which Bill took advantage of as
soon as we got under way. The drive was uneventful though
Bill hit some pretty hard rain in Louisiana. Unlimited streaming
on Perry’s phone gave us all kinds of great music
and comedy skits on the way out. Stopped and ate in Louisiana
at a place fittingly called Jerks. We arrived at Scott’s
(Bill’s brother) house at 10:15 after stopping at
the grocery store for supplies of beer, bagels, and cream
cheese. We all slept like the dead Saturday night, with
Perry on the couch in the living room, Bob on the air mattress
in a guest room and Bill on a futon in the other guest room.
woke up to no wind, so Bill took us on a tour of Corpus
and took us to beautiful Padre Island. Bob bought a board
at Worldwinds windsurfing located on the shores of Laguna
Madre. Visited a variety of launch sites and met Bill’s
mom who is indeed the saint you pictured her to be since
she raised Bill and 4 other kids. A beautiful day ending
with martinis and steaks in Scott’s backyard! Can’t
forget little Chipper, a rat terrier, who loved to piddle
on Perry’s crocs in his excitement to see him.
On Monday, the wind was once again elusive, so we went on
a tour of the CSV Lexington, an aircraft carrier that served
in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. One of the high lights was
a liquor store named Specs. Saw brands of Scotch, Gin, and
Rum we’d never heard of, but had to try. I’m
sorry I only had three credit cards with me. Tonight we
drink Botanist gin martinis.
On Tuesday we went to Padre Island hoping for wind and got
some, mostly from surrounding storms. Perry got about a
30 minute good sessions in while Bob and Bill floundered
on their short boards. Bob found out the “up the nose”
way that Laguna Madre has a much higher salt content then
In the early evening we met up with Randy Rhodes and Don,
the owner of Worldwinds, for some beers at a gulf front
place called Barnacle Bills then went to eat some Mexican
food. Joining us there was Bill's brother Scott and Randy's
lovely wife, Angela. Randy regaled us with stories from
his many adventures in the sport.
Wednesday, Randy let me observe both he and Olivier teaching
beginners windsurfing classes. The water here is ideal for
teaching due to the relative shallowness with relatively
no tidal change. You have to go pretty far out if you are
an adult for it to be over your head. The first 30 yards
of beach is only up to your knees, so the vertically challenged
and kids can even have an area not over their heads. Tried
to take notes but the ink kept running and the paper got
wet and tore apart.
Thursday night we went out and saw Robert Earl Keen at Brewster
Street Ice House, an open air bar/performance hall, who
put on an incredible concert. Everyone in Corpus knew the
lyrics to the Texans songs and it was one great big sing
along. Scott and I stood (no seats) about middle of the
crowd and Bill and Perry slowly made their way to the front
of the stage in order to throw their . . . hands up in the
air. When the concert was over beer bottles littered the
floor, and that was just from us! No chicken wire up front,
Wednesday through Saturday had gusty (12-20) east winds
all day. Bill and I shared sailing my 152 litre BIC with
his 7.5 sail. Able to get some good runs in every now and
again, but nothing consistent. Perry came out a few times
on Saturday to ride some of the gusts and slog through the
We left Sunday morning for an uneventful ride back. Due
to time changes and stopping to eat, we arrived home at
12:30am. Though the wind wasn’t what we hoped for,
the place and the people far exceeded our expectations.
on images for larager view) Go to our FACEBOOK
page to see the full Corpus Christi photo album.
The Windsurfing Shop on Federal Lands
Windsuring (Worldwinds.net), located on Padre Island National
Seashore at Bird Island Basin, is an amazing facility; not
only do they give lessons and sell and rent gear, but they
do all of this with no utilities run to their building. They
use cisterns to gather water and have solar panels with a
series of chargeable batteries to provide electricity. They
are able to pick up signal for one cell phone provider. The
rest rooms, a very short walk from their facility, are provided
by the National Seashore and are little more than really nice,
well dug, outhouses.
The only thing better than the facility are the people that
work there and the folks that congregate on the beach. Don,
the owner, was a great guy to speak to, willing to share what
they do in training, and speaking
of his business which continues to grow. The staff, who all
teach, were wonderful and easy to talk to. Some of you know
Randy Rhodes who used to race at many of our regattas and
is from the panhandle. His wife, Angela, works part time at
the store since she is also a full time nurse. Olivier Jallais,
2000 Canadian National Champ and has a need for speed, was
helpful in Bob’s selection of a weed fin. Patrick was
the first employee we encountered on Sunday while he was teaching
a 5 year old how to sail on a board with a 1 meter sail.
On the beach we met a young couple from Maryland who are part
of the Baltimore Area Boardsailing Association (/www.windsurfbaba.org),
some folks from Dallas who are members of the North Texas
Wind Riders (www.ntwr.org), and a gentleman from around Phoenix.
We became known as the Florida boys.
were told that having martinis on the beach, as we did from
Tuesday through Friday, raised the etiquette bar on the beach.
Perry invited others on the beach and at the shop to partake
with us, and they did, enjoying their martinis and blue cheese
Club meeting minutes May 8th
Meeting called to order at 7:33. 22 bodies present. Welcome
Bob G. spoke about lessons and the kids day on June 2nd. He
did not speak eloquently, so thank goodness he didn’t
have much to say.
The on-line minutes approved by the two people that read them.
Glad I didn’t pursue that PhD in writing.
Work day – Drying racks installed. Mike L. is missing
his Ryobi saw. Great discussion on the topic of a missing
saw and how much someone may have gotten for it. Mark V. and
Mike L. were not at all pleased with how high the top rail
was. Terms were used during the meeting that cannot be printed
here. Needless to say, the top rail will be lowered in order
to keep the peace. The day before the Sunday workday saw Bob
G. and Bill O. assemble the training equipment.
We had no police incidents on the beach during the Smith regatta.
Even though I saw some people in bathing suits that should
have been illegal, the people who shouldn’t have been
wearing them were not arrested. Good thing for the beer.
A number of people commented on how well the SPSC supports
the Smith event. Racing was fun and well run. Wrap up party
is on May 18th.
There was much gnashing of teeth and moaning about the $2
parking fee during the Smith. We all know Wakulla County is
moving towards becoming a socialist/Marxist/Kenyan county
and they need to raise funds in order to rename Shell Point
to The People’s Beach, so be a good comrade and pay
up. Wright mentioned getting a season pass for the beach and
is working on it.
NIMBY – Get a room. We will be launching from St. Andrews
Bay Yacht club. Gear can stay rigged up at the yacht club.
Price going up since supper will be included with a keg of
beer. The yacht club is about 10 minutes from motel.
Purser reported that the club is still on the plus side of
$0. If you want to know how much on the plus side, COME TO
We have 61 memberships with Dan Olivier and Dave Stanger being
our newest members.
It is obvious our club believes in Chaos theory because that
is what I am observing right now. There are multiple conversations,
joking, laughter, etc. Out of the chaos came a motion to adjourn,
a motion that the Scribe was eagerly listening for, because
he quickly seconded it and stopped taking notes. Had to finish