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Vice-Commodore Report: September 2017

We've finished our Summer of Themed Sails designed to help our newer members get started enjoying our sport of sailing. I've heard nothing but good review. So I guess we did OK. Feedback is welcome, so let's hear it. Send to my e-mail address, or to Rich Reed's, John Pasch's, or Ken Butterly's . . . but let's hear from you.

For our September program we've got Professor Ted Karamansky from Loyola University, to give us some insight into how the schooner trade helped build Chicago. I've heard Ted talk, and he's a really interesting, enjoyable speaker. Let's see everybody out at our 18 September meeting.

Also -- don't forget our photo contest at our October meeting. Get your favorite entries to me, best as 5 x 7 inch prints, but JPGs are OK as long as they look good when I make 5 x 7s out of them. NOTE: if JPGs aren't approx. the right aspect, they may not be cropped the way you hoped for. It is best to print them yourself and mail to me. ALSO -- a new feature this year will be the opportunity to present your club-related videos (yes, home movies!), up to 10 minutes in length. They won't be judged for prizes, but will play during the meeting for all to enjoy. We will provide more on this at the September meeting. Get ready, get set, GoPro!

Finally – we have a weekend sail coming up at Lake Mendota on September 22 and 24. These inland lake sails are great opportunities to spend a lot more time on the water than on our Saturday afternoon sails on Lake Michigan. Sign up on the Club www.nwsail.com or get in touch with me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

See y'all in September!

John Morris, Vice Commodore

Vice-Commodore Report: August 2017

107th Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac


I joined the crew of Bill Derrah's Loki for my first Chicago-Mackinac race, and in spite of a string of unfortunate and unpredictable events, we all ended up smiling at the post-race party.

Everybody agreed it was the worst Chi-Mac in 50 years -- 99 boats withdrew (including us, eventually). Maybe next year we'll make it to the finish line!

See y'all at the August meeting, when we'll continue our summer series of sailing tips and nudges for our new sailors.


JohnMorris CrewMacRace2017

Loci’s crew on Tuesday, after the Mac at the Mt, Gay Rum Party for Competitors. (L to R): Don Glasell, Bill Derrah (Loci owner/skipper), Leo Burns, Steve Lambert, Jonathon Levine, John Morris, Tom Lambert -- Don Glasell and Bill Derrah have been NWSA speakers recently.

-John Morris, VComm.

Vice-Commodore Report: July 2017

I think June's membership meeting went quite well. All three speakers did great jobs, and deserve another round of applause. Many thanks also to Larry Makowski for offering to take two "newbies" out on his boat, "Sea Hawk" for further on-the-water experience. I also shepherded new member Ted McClintic through several brisk sailing experiences over the Lake Mendota weekend.

Our only disappointment was in the small number of members who stood up to proceed with on-the-water experience. Where was everybody? Next month, I hope?

For July I won't be able to make the meeting, and the program will be turned over to Ken Butterly and John Pasch, for a lot more good stuff on sail trim, control, and maneuvering, plus a bit of good rules-of-the-road info. If you are among our many recent new members who isn't quite sure how all this stuff works:
"What's a leeward boat?"
"What's the difference between a tack and a gybe, anyway?"
You NEED to be at our July meeting, and then aboard one of our willing skippers' boats, learning and practicing the skills of wind-ship seamanship.

Confucius said:
"If I hear, I forget;
if I see, I remember;
if I do, I understand."

Vice-Commodore Report: June 2017


For June we begin our much-anticipated Themed Sail program with our first Learn-to-Sail Experience.  Our meeting program for 19 June will feature invited speaker (and NWSA member) Chas Hague from the US Coast Guard Auxiliary, who will speak on aspects of boating safety.  Following Chas’ talk, we will have sections on knot-tying by Richard Reed and sail trim by John Pasch.  Once we have covered this ground, we’ll assign interested learners to willing captains for on-the-water experience during the following several weeks.

In July we will do it all again, with the next installment – Stay tuned.

I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again—“This is the best learn-to-sail experience you will find at any price, so come on, people—let’s make it a BIG success! –John


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