July 2015
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Sachem's Head Yacht Club

Junior Sailing Newsletter - End of July Edition

Adventure Sailing

This Monday the Adventure Sailors were greeted by steady rain, thunder and lightening as they ran across the bridge for safety. The highlight of the class was a draw you dream boat activity including individual presentations in front of the entire class.
Another day the adventure sailing class enjoyed going out to the red nun, testing different objects as they drift in the current.  They are comparing how the wind and current affect different objects that float on the surface or are submerged in the water. Last Monday they went fishing, Paige Steffen and Kendall Mulligan caught a Sea Bass, while one held the rod and the other reeled in the fish.  Teddy was very relieved they caught something after he bragged about his “secret” spot all year long.  This marks the first fish the class has caught!  It was a big success for all.

Host Sailing Instructor for Dinner

Host Matt Webber, the Race Coach,  for dinner at your house! Please sign up here:

420 Class

One particular Wednesday we decided it was the perfect day to go for our first sail around Faulkner’s Island. We got about 1/3 of the way there when the wind picked up to over 20 mph. Everyone handled it like a pro. We had two gear failures, which we dealt with, no capsizes, and lots of smiles once we got back to the dock. There were a few tense moments, but I was incredibly proud of all the sailors! The next day the wind looked just right for another try at Faulkner’s Island. The class was a little timid, but we psyched them up and off we went. It was a perfect day and we had success!! A good time was had by all. In the next weeks we will start working more with Spinnakers and more advanced sailing techniques.

Advanced Opti and Bic

We are proud that so many Opti, BIC, and 420 kids participated in the regatta on Sunday at Pine Orchard Yacht Club! Monday afternoon we took the whole afternoon class to Pine Orchard to sail back the four 420's that could not be towed on Sunday because of high winds and big seas. All the sailors, including our younger afternoon Opti kids did a wonderful job stepping up and skippering 420's back to Sachems Head; a great long distance sailing practice opportunity.  

In general, the afternoon Opti and BIC classes have been working on racing and improving their skills in a wide range of wind/wave conditions. They have been tackling some pretty big wind, waves, and weather conditions - we are impressed!  We will continue to get them out in more conditions that will help them become better sailors.
Parent of the 1/2 Day
(6 Spots Needed)
Thank you to all the parents that have volunteered. It is a big help. We are still looking for parents for next week (week of August 3rd). You can sign up here:

(NEW) Friday July 31st
AM (8:45-12:45PM) – Sign-up Here
Monday August 3rd
AM (8:45-12:45PM) – Megan R
PM (12:15-4:15PM) – Sign-up Here
Tuesday, August 4th
AM (8:45-12:45PM) – Sign-up Here
PM (12:15-4:15PM) –  Sign-up Here
Wednesday, August 5th
AM (8:45-12:45PM) – Sign-up Here
PM (12:15-4:15PM) – Mandy B
Thursday, August 6th
AM (8:45-12:45PM) – Sign-up Here
PM (12:15-4:15PM) – Liza

Important: after checking in and getting your red POD backpack, please stick around so the instructors can introduce you to the kids and so you can listen to the daily briefing so that you know what the kids are doing for the day.  >
SHYC Junior Swimming Lessons (July 2015)

Sea Squirts

This week in Seasquirts, we towed the kids in Opti's with a sail behind a motorboat and taught them how to pull in the sail when going upwind! We also did the buoyancy STEM activity where we made tinfoil boats and tested to see how many marbles could fit! Hannah brown got the most with 132 marbles! We did a rigging relay race and then sprit raced around 1 of the moorings in the harbor! Everyone got a turn steering and using the sprit as a paddle. After the sprit race we did a swimming race. After swimming, 2 kids sprit-raced back to the opti dock where they derigged! Everyone had a blast and learned more about steering!

The Squirts are transitioning from getting comfortable in sailing class and on the water, to taking the helm of an Opti themselves.  Earlier in July, they had been steering an Opti while being towed behind a power boat to get the feel of the tiller and the cause and effect of steering without the added distraction of the boom.  On another day they went sailing in an Opti with an instructor to get the feel of the boat and shake off any nervousness. One beautiful day with perfect wind we did what we call “take a squirt sailing day.”  We pair up the squirts with one of our beginning Opti sailors. We then have the beginner Opti sailor teach the squirt everything they know about rigging and sailing.   It is very cute to see the Opti kids take over and teach the Sea Squirts.  It is amazing how well they do and how empathetic they are.

August 5th - 5:00 - 7:00PM
Take Your Parents Sailing Night

All of the instructors will be on hand to help facilitate you and your child going sailing so you can see all they have learned.  The snack bar will be open and all the boats will be available. Matt will also be running a couple of the STEM activities we have been implementing at the club. Parents and children will have the chance to make an Anemometer to measure the wind speed. It should be a fun night, certainly one of my favorite activities during the summer.

Beginner Opti

This week we were challenged with no wind in our morning Beginner Opti classes. So we focused on learning how to roll tack in light air and rudderless sail! This week has also been one of the hottest weeks to date, so we have been drinking plenty of water and going swimming more than the seals that live at Faulkners Island! In recent weeks the Beginner Opti class worked on boat mechanics and sailing in a straight line. They are now all quite competent sailing in a straight line when they are trailing a powerboat or aiming at something on shore. The next step is to teach them to adjust their sails based on the wind and the tell tales. This concept is a little abstract and takes into account feel of the boat, the sail, and taking cues from the environment. It is one of the last steps before our little sailors become independent on the water.
SHYC Orange Ball Tennis Team
@ Madison Racquet Club (July 2015)

Opti and BIC Buying and Selling

Do you have an Opt and/or BIC that you will be ready to sell at the end of the summer? Are you looking to buy an Opt or BIC for next summer? Email Sarah Brown and she will list it in the next Junior Sailing newsletter!

Pine Orchard Junior Regatta

We had 2 bics, 4 optis, and 4 420s make the trip over to Pine Orchard Yacht Club for the Jr regatta on Sunday, July 27th. Sailors made friends while playing games in the POYC clubhouse waiting for storms to blow over. Around 11 am the weather started to clear and we were able to have each fleet sail 2 races before an on the water lunch break. The SHYC Race Coach, Matthew Weber and the Green Fleet Coach, Ali Gowrie, had their sailors tie up to their anchored ribcrafts for lunch. In the Bic fleet, SHYC sailors, Emma Bonz took second and Ike Schutz took third after sailing great races all day. SHYC White fleet optis did well also, with Nola Lai sailing on the big course for the first time! And Simon Weeks took third and Henry Ginz finished in first for White fleet as they had dominated the front of the fleet together all day. In the Green Fleet, Skylar Raymond placed third and did a great job of gaining confidence in her Opti as the day went on! For the SHYC 420s, this was their first 420 regatta for all of them. Hayden Lai and Penelope Weeks were consistently hanging with the experienced sailors while flying their spinnaker beautifully on the long downwind legs of their W2 course. Also making a showing for the first time was Jake Meisen and Peter D'albert and the Carrol sisters, Molly and Izzie. Henry and James Hayden placed second overall in the large 420 fleet after Henry Hayden made his return from sailing at 420 nationals last week. Thanks to all the parents, especially Peter Ginz, Harcourt Schutz, and Jay Bonz for helping transporting some of the boats. We look forward to two regattas this upcoming week, one in Optis and the other in Open Bics!

Race Team

July 17th SHYC JR Annual Regatta.  We had a great showing and many new sailors tried out the Green Fleet.  The wind was light, but there were lots of smiles and everyone had a good time.  All our sailors had good races they should be proud of.  Most importantly, the SHYC community came together to run a really great regatta that the yacht club should be proud of!  SHYC trophy winners were: Ike Schutz, Henry Ferguson, Wills Erda,  Silas Streeter, Quinn Raymond, Bryar Russell, Simon Weekes, Henry 

Last week, we went to the Niantic Bay Junior Olympics, where big breeze met the team!  Ike Schutz and Simion Weekes placed gold and bronze in the Green fleet.  The Opti fleet was very competitive and our sailors did a great job. There were certainly sore muscles and smiles once back on shore.


A couple of things to remember:
  • Please email Scott if your child will be going on vacation and missing more than a few days of sailing in a row. It helps with planning.  
  • The weeks of July 27th and August 10th we will have new instructors join us.  Corey Fast, who taught for a couple weeks last year, will be here the first week and her brother Kyle Fast the later week. Both are excellent sailors and have worked teaching sailing all of their adult lives. The 420 kids are excited to see Corey again and Teddy has worked with Kyle at other clubs. 

Upcoming SHYC Events

  • Thursday, July 30th - Tiverton Yacht Club OpenBic Regatta (Tiverton, RI)
  • Friday, July 31st - Masons Island Green Opti Regatta (Mystic, CT)
  • Saturday, August 1st 6:00PM - Family Fun Night - Hoedown
  • Wednesday, August 5th 5:00PM - 7:00PM - Take Your Parents Sailing Night
  • Friday August 7th 6:30 - 9:00PM - Tri Club Junior Party Ages 10-15
  • Friday, August 7th - Madison Beach Club Jr. Regatta
  • Saturday, August 8th - Parent/Junior SHYC Tennis Tournament -  10& under at 1-2:30pm, 11 & over at 2:30-4:00.
  • Thursday, August 13th - Junior SHYC Tennis Tournament (all ages)>
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