Ames Sailing Club News and Announcements

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News from the Commodore

Lets go sailing! Sailing offers so many opportunities to learn new skills, explore new places, and meet new friends with similar interests. My challenge to each member is to make 2000 a memorable year in your sailing career. This may mean buying the boat of your dreams, taking a vacation in an exotic location, getting a Coast Guard license, qualifying to bareboat charter, or simply going sailing for the first time. Whatever fits your situation, make your choice, be resolute. Do it!

The Ames Sailing Club started the year with a dinner meeting on February 5 to induct the new officers and directors. We reflected on last year’s successes in building the membership, helping new members to learn to sail, featuring informative speakers at our meetings, and organizing a busy schedule of evening sails and weekend cruises. Perhaps our best luck last year came when Greg Sherwood agreed to serve his full term as President despite changing jobs. Our good fortune continues as Greg continues to be active as Staff Commodore. Greg was honored at the February meeting with our appreciation for his leadership and the gift of a photograph from the NASA archives showing Greg presenting Dr. McDonald with an honorary club membership.

Here are a few of the things to look forward to in the coming year. In April, Greg Sherwood and Jeff Smith will be racing a charter entry in Antigua Race Week, one of the world’s five largest international regattas. The rest of us can follow their progress vicariously on the Antigua Sailing Week web site. Beginning in April, and continuing through the summer, we will also be racing also at Santa Cruz on Tuesday nights. These are informal races just for the fun of it. In September, we will hold our annual picnic at Vasona Lake. This year we may challenge the picnic attendees to build a boat in less than 2 hours, then sail it! Details remain to be worked out. A major cruise is also being planned for October, to Catalina Island, during their annual jazz festival.

A new activity this year for the club draws inspiration from the engineering and education outreach activities at Ames. Robotics competitions are now major events with many people involved in them. This year, the feasibility of a robotic sailboat will be explored, hopefully with more than one design by club members who are interested in both robotics and sailing.

We will fill in the description of these activities as the year unfolds. Our calendar of events is dynamic and depends on the enthusiasm and participation of our members. If you have ideas and would like to be part of the planning of activies for the club, please offer to help. The efforts of your officers will provide direction and guidance for meetings and various activities. But full functioning of the club requires participation by its members. We need you to volunteer a little of your time now and then. Upcoming functions where help is needed include planning week-end sailing events throughout the season, finding good speakers for meetings, organizing the annual picnic, and designing and building a robotic sailboat. Please contact any officer to volunteer.

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