BTS: April, 2017

Sail Chicago Newsletter for April
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ISSUE #4/APRIL, 2017
By Steve VanderVoort, BTS Editor
Sail Chicago is truly a unique organization in Chicago and, perhaps in the whole nation, in that it is an all-volunteer community sailing program. This is the main reason that we can keep the costs of sailing affordable for our member-volunteers.  But affordable cost is only one benefit of our all-volunteer program. Volunteering builds a sense of community and a personal investment in our many programs.  That's why so many of our members are so passionate about sailing. And volunteering helps to build strong relationships among our members that are helpful in finding other skippers and crew with whom to sail.  Volunteering for maintenance projects can also teach you much about how are boats are sailed and how to keep them in safe working order.
Our expectation is that each of our members will volunteer to help the organization in ways that account for at least 20 hours of time annually.  Many of our members put in substantially more time than this.
Currently, our maintenance team is getting our boats ready to go into the water the first part of May.  Much help is needed in this preparation process if we are going to keep on schedule.  Please consider volunteering for this important work by reviewing the schedule outlined in this email that was recently sent to all members.  Remember, you need to have met your annual service requirement by May 1 or pay a $400 opt-out fee if you would like to have on-the-water privileges for the upcoming sailing season.
By Christine Garvey, Volunteer Coordinator
We have the following positions available for our member-volunteers who would like help in fulfilling their annual service requirements.  For more information please contact 
*Website help: knowledge helpful. You need to have a long-term commitment to Sail Chicago. Active participation completes service time.
*Membership assistant - This person helps the membership coordinator. Active participation completes service time.
*Fundraising Coordinator and team:  Creates and implements fundraising activities.  Active participation completes service time.
*Community sailing skippers and first mates (Laurence Hall, Urban Sail, Schuler Scholars):  Must have weekday afternoons available. 5 sails completes service time.
*MCO skippers:  You may bring your own first mate.  5 sails completes service time.
*Tiller Time skippers:  You may not bring your own first mate because you need to be confident and competent to give the tiller up to students.  5 sails completes service time.
*No open positions
*Instructors:  One class completes service time and $100 in sailing credits is earned.
*Assistant program coordinator:  Active participation completes service time.
*Maintenance Coordinators- We are looking for 3 people to share the role of coordinator. 3 people doing this job decreases the time commitment. Division of responsibilities will be determined by those members who fill the positions. Active participation completes service time. Each person receives $200 in sailing credits.
*Communicator - This person helps the coordinators schedule events and notify members of these events. Active participation completes service time.
*Boat teams:  Helps make and keep the boats in safe, sailing condition. Active participation completes service time.
Boatyard coordinators - We are looking for 2 people to coordinate the boatyard activities.   Active participation completes service time. Each person earns $100 in sailing credits.
* Gas teams:  Going out at least 5 Fridays during the season will complete service time.
*Boatyard teams:  This team is responsible for getting the boats ready for the beginning and end of the season. 5 days of work satisfies service time.
By Tom Peterson, Maintenance Coordinator
Helping out at spring maintenance
We are preparing all the boats in the fleet for their trip to the harbors. We can use quite a bit of help for the next four weekends with occasional weekday sessions.  Below is a listing of the dates, with a sample of some of the tasks we need to complete before launch.  If you are interested in more information, email or call Tom Peterson or Cozy Whittington.  Also, let us know if you are interested in the river trip, and we will contact you closer to the date.

Spring Maintenance Schedule:

April 1/2 (Sat/Sun) 9:00am - 1:00pm - general maintenance, all boats
April 8/9 (Sat/Sun) 9:00am - 1:00pm - general maintenance
April 15/16 (Sat/Sun) 9:00am - 1:00pm - general maintenance
April 22/23 (Sat/Sun) 9:00am - until done - general maintenance
April 24/25 (Mon/Tues) motor Colgates up river (tentative)
April 26 (rain date 29th) Cruisers motor up river to harbor
April 29/30 (Sat/Sun) raise masts on Colgates
April 29 (Sat) Rhodes and Ideals to Montrose on trailers
April 30 (Sun) Rhodes and Ideals to Monroe Harbor (rain date May 6/7)
Colgate Task Samples:
  • Check anchor rode length and condition, replace as needed
  • Inspect all lines for condition, and replace any missing or worn
  • Distribute new standing rigging to three boats, and document
  • Reinforce winter damaged mast stands for river trip
  • Verify all items present that are on boat safety checklist
  • Check dates on air horns, first aid kits, and fire extinguishers
  • Check winches, clutches, cleats, repair or replace as needed
  • Replace bilge pump line on Rubato with new hose
  • Clear out cabin and clean each boat inventory parts
  • Collect cleaning supplies and determine which are still usable
  • Inspect and test power tools in trailer, especially buffers
  • Scrub decks and add surface protection
  • Toolbox inventory and preparation
Please consider coming out and helping with maintenance, even if you have another volunteer job.

The cruising committee has announced the return of the five-sail promotion for 2017:

  • Priorities - Five sails for $350. These sails may be used during any rental period and reduces maximum rental charge to $70 per rental period.  Click here to register through Constant Contact.
  • Calypso - Five sails for $450. These sails may be used during any rental period and reduces maximum rental charge to $90 per rental period.  Click here to register through Constant Contact.
By Bob Lapin, Cruising Coordinator

Cruising skippers who want to refresh their acquaintance with Priorities or get familiar with our new cruiser, Calypso, can now do so:

Rusty skipper sails on Priorities will be available soon on the web site for existing Priorities skippers.  Please sign up under the "Refresher" category once "Seat Reservations" are available. These dates are the evenings on May 16 and May 30, and the mornings of May 21 and 28.
Orientation sails on Calypso will be available shortly. The dates are the evenings of May 15, 16 and 30; and the mornings of May 21 and 28.  The mooring location has not been confirmed at this time.  We have asked for a slip at DuSable or Belmont or a mooring ball at Monroe in that order of priority.
By Sarah Pellegrino, Board Member
Join Sail Chicago members at Columbia Yacht Club for a Season Kickoff party on May 20 at 2:00 p.m.  We are keeping it casual with beer and snacks and most importantly... the Sail Chicago fleet will be on display at the dock including our new Ericson 34, Calypso, the new Colgate 26, Rubato, as well as our Rhodes 19 and Ideal 18. 
Meet with members of the maintenance crews who keep these boats in tip-top shape for the season, network with Sail Chicago members for future crew opportunities, and meet members of the Board. There will not be any sailing, just brews and (fingers crossed!) nice weather. The event will take place on the Rail Deck (lower level of Columbia Yacht Club) right as you walk inside. Sail Chicago members and guests are welcome to attend. There is no cost.  To register for the event, please click  Parking is available in the 

Sail Chicago members and guests are welcome to attend.  There is no cost.  Since Sail Chicago is bringing its own beer, it would be a big help if some members can bring coolers.  If you can bring a cooler, please email me.
Stick around after the Sail Chicago Season Kickoff Event for Columbia Yacht Club's first annual fundraiser for their sailing school at 6:30 pm on May 20. Find out more information on their  Contact Columbia Yacht Club for further information.
By Tom Simms, Schuler Scholars Coordinator
Chicago Maritime Museum
If you're getting anxious to start the sailing season, you might consider a trip to the  Chicago Maritime Museum.  Located at 1200 West 35th St, right on the river, it makes for a very pleasant excursion into Chicago's nautical history.  The exhibits and artifacts trace the huge impact our waterways had on the development of our city.  Beginning with the earliest explorers on through the reversal of the Chicago River and continuing to the Mackinac races and all the events along the way, it is very informative.  

My visit with fellow Sail Chicago member, Jim Grodzins, was made especially enjoyable due to the warm welcome and personal tours offered by Kellogg Fairbanks, the Executive Director and Dan Glasell, the Office Manager. This museum is located inside the Bridgeport Art Center, so you can also enjoy visiting some of their galleries, studios and workshops.
By Matt Stuczynski, Lead Instructor

With our record number of new Colgate skippers that we had this season (42!!!), we are initiating a Skipper Mentor Program to help welcome our newbie captains as members of Sail Chicago.  Most of our new skippers are not only new to our group, but new to sailing so they could benefit by a Sail Chicago buddy to help guide them into the world of commanding a boat and through the Do's, Don'ts and Culture or our unique community sailing organization.
If you would like to be paired up with a new skipper and help pass on your knowledge, contact Lead Instructor, Matt Stuczynski. Mentors will be asked to be a possible "go-to person" for questions about the group, seamanship and general knowledge and advice.  Ideally, mentors might also accompany our new skippers on practice sails (especially at the beginning of next season) to enable these new skippers to follow our rule of only going out with an experienced skipper during their first, full year of sailing. You do not need to be an Instructor to be a mentor; just willing to share your knowledge and joy of the sport to teach AND learn with a new and enthusiastic Sail Chicago skipper.
By Tom Peterson, Maintenance Coordinator
Last year Recess, one of our Colgate 26s, sustained damage from a run along the harbor wall, and a temporary repair was made with the boat out of the water at Belmont Harbor during the season.  We wanted to get the boat properly repaired, so we had Mick from Lakeshore Marina take it into his bay and look at the damage.
A view of the damaged area in Recess's hull
It was instructive to see what can happen when a boat even takes a glancing blow to the harbor wall, which is what happened in the case of Recess.  While there was visible grinding bow damage, what was not apparent was that the boat developed finger like cracks about eight feet back from the bow that popped all the bottom paint off large areas. The blow compressed and pushed out the areas of the hull back from the bow. There was an area of about 4 feet on both sides where the damage was bad enough that we had to have it stripped and fiber glassed. Recess is now repaired and looks great after Mick buffed and waxed the full hull, but it was an expensive repair (about $4,000) that we would like to avoid in the future.
By Bob Lapin, Board Secretary
The Sail Chicago Board met on Thursday, March 9, by phone.  The following items were discussed:

  • Chris Schuler nominated and confirmed as chairman; Martin Module nominated and confirmed as treasurer; Bob Lapin nominated and confirmed as secretary; and Maya Teleki nominated and confirmed as vice chair.
  • Frank McNamara welcomed as a new board member.
  • New season memberships are reported to be off to a great start.
  • Sail Chicago has adopted US Sailing's online textbook for basic keel boat classes.
  • A May 20, kickoff party is being planned jointly with Columbia Yacht Club.  Shawn Lord is arranging skippers for our boats.
  • Maintenance is in full gear in order to prepare our boats for the up-coming season. A new messaging system will be used to remind members that their help is needed.
  • Colgates will motor down the river on April 24, May 1 and May 2 with mast raising on April 29 and May 6. Rain dates are April 30 and May 7.

Help our Community Outreach Programs
Please consider volunteering to skipper or crew on a weekday afternoon sail with one of our three groups that take underprivileged children sailing. Skippering five or more times will fulfill your service requirement for the following year. For more information on the Lawrence Hall Youth Services, Urban Youth, and Schuler Scholars, go to the Sail Chicago Website.
Join or Renew Your US Sailing Membership at a Discount Through MVP
Sail Chicago members can join or renew their US Sailing membership at a $10 discount through the US Sailing Member Value Partner program.
Shop Amazon Smile and Donate to Sail Chicago
When you shop online at Amazon Smile, Sail Chicago will receive a donation of .5% of your eligible purchases. It's a great way to both give and receive. To get started, click here.
Read the Sail Chicago Blog
Keep up to date on the events and activities of Sail Chicago and the Chicago sailing community. Read the sail Chicago blog on a regular basis. You can find it on the Sail Chicago website under "News."
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Missing Previous Issues of Between the Sheets?
You can always find the current issue and an archive of previous issues of Between the Sheets at the first (and open to the public) page of the Sail Chicago website. Look under "News/Newsletter."

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Sail Chicago, P.O. Box 101069, Chicago, IL 60610-8914
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