From the Pilothouse: the SWYC newsletter

January 2020 Newsletter

Commodore’s Message January 2020

Happy New Year to all of you!  I hope you all had a wonderful Holiday Season.  Those of us who attended the Yacht Club’s Christmas party were treated to ham, turkey, and sides prepared by the Board members and appetizers and desserts brought by the other members.  Thanks so much to Kathy Rodgers and Debra Richardson for spearheading the event.  Not only was the food delicious, but we also learned that some of our members have hidden dance talents with Team Funky Chicken and the Locomotion teams taking top honors in the dance contest.  Thanks also to Michael Scott for providing the music.

Thanks to the generosity of our club members, we collected $1,000 at the Christmas party for the Island Senior Resources Meals on Wheels program.  When I presented this to Debbie Metz at ISR, I learned that a generous anonymous donor was quadrupling all donations made by the end of the year, turning our SWYC donation into $4,000!  What a wonderful Christmas gift for a great program.
I am also happy to announce that Katy Shaner is our new Rear Commodore, and she plans to continue her work with the Windward Women and the kayaking group.  Pete Grimlund has volunteered to come on the Board as a Member at Large to fill the position that Katy vacated.  Thanks to both of them for accepting these positions.
As we enter the new year, it’s time for membership renewals.  Early in January, our membership tool, MembershipWorks, will automatically send a renewal reminder to the primary account holder of all current members, and only primary account holders can renew.  All members will receive a separate email explaining the online renewal process which can be completed with a credit card transaction.  You will all still have the option of paying by check. If the Primary member isn’t the person that normally makes payments in your household, you can make that change online.  Instruction are on the website.
I am looking forward to a great year for the South Whidbey Yacht Club, and we are in the process of finalizing our 2020 calendar.  Don’t forget to go to our new website often for updates on all of our activities.
Looking forward to seeing you at our various events throughout the year.
Jim Rogers, Commodore SWYC

January 15, 2020
Deer Lagoon Grange
6:30 Sips & Chips
7:00 Business Meeting
7:15 Program
Stacy Wallace is a Naturopathic Physician and herbalist, practicing on Whidbey Island. She served in the U.S. Coast Guard for 10 years in both the rugged Northwest and the Northeast. She has a decade of sea stories and experiences on the water to share with us.  Her talk will include some of those stories and a slideshow of photos.
January is the time to renew your SWYC membership.   Dues remain the same again for yet another year.   The only thing that is changing is that renews will be done online.   You will be receiving an email in the beginning of January with instructions on how to renew your membership online.
We understand that this is new to everyone but have all the faith that we will figure things out together. We’ll be at the January General Meeting to help anyone who is having issues with getting logged in.
Thanks for helping us move to the digital age in 2020 and don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions or need assistance in any way.
Look for email notices in your email the week of January 6th.   Feel free to contact Debra Richardson; or Kathy Rodgers; with any questions or concerns.
Windward Women, come one, come all and let’s celebrate the beginning of the new year with a social on Monday, January 13 to Port Townsend. We can wander through Port Townsend at leisure and meet for a 11:30 lunch at the Thai restaurant called Khu Larb Thai – 225 Adams Street. Khu Larb Thai is a charming restaurant serving delicious Thai food. Their recipes “reflect the Chinese, Malaysian and Indian influences on this distinctive cuisine.”
The restaurant is a short walk from the ferry landing and a block from the Rose Theatre. Interested in finding out more about the restaurant? Check out the menu.
Morning ferries from Coupeville are at 8:45 and 10:15. The earlier ferry would be good for wandering Port Townsend and a leisurely walk to the restaurant. The choice is yours. If you are driving instead of walking on ferry reservations are recommended on this route.
Reservations will be made so please contact Katy Shaner by Friday,  January 10.
It’s not too soon to think about summer sailing lessons for the kids in your family (and maybe yourself as well). Our Youth Learn to Sail day camp teaches kids ages 10-16 the basics of sailing. The courses combine shore-side instruction with lots of on-the-water, hand on tiller experience. The focus is on being safe and having fun.
South Whidbey Parks and Rec will open registration in April – watch for a notice in the Newsletter. and the SWYC website.YOUTH SAILING CAMPS
Beginning Students
Ages 10 to 15
Camp 1 – July 6-10
Camp 2 – July 13-17
Camp 3 – July 20-24
Intermediate Students
Ages 12- 16
Open to students who have achieved Level 2 in the Beginning Camp
July 6-10
July 13-17
July 20-24
$175 per week
All camps run from 9 AM to 2:30 PM. Students will sail on Deer Lake.ADULT SAILING CAMPS
Session 1
June 20 & 21
10 AM to 2:30 PM*
Session 2
June 22 to June 25
2 PM to 4:30 PM*
Session 3
June 27 & 28
10 AM to 2:30 pm*
June 26
Regatta and Makeup Day for all sessions
$200 per session

**Intermediate Lesson Plan will be available for returning or experienced adult students
For more information about classes
Register with SW Parks & Recreation

Join other SWYC kayakers to learn about and share plans for kayaking in 2020. Our first meeting will be Monday, February 3. Please put this date on your calendars with details to follow. Questions? Contact Katy Shaner at

December 2019 Newsletter

I hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving and are looking forward to the upcoming
Christmas season. SWYC’s annual Christmas party is Wednesday, December 18, and I am looking forward to celebrating the Holidays with you. Each year at the Christmas party, our club accepts donations for a charitable organization on South Whidbey. Your Board has chosen the Meals on Wheels program as our recipient for donations this year, and we will have representatives from Island Senior Resources to talk briefly about the program. Please bring your check book or cash and generously donate to Meals on Wheels, which provides a very vital service to our South Whidbey residents.
There will be some changes in the composition of the Board for next year, and Deb and I are planning a joint outgoing/incoming Board meeting this month to assure a smooth transition. We still do not have a Rear Commodore, so if you would be interested in serving your club in this position, please contact me. We are also looking for suggestions for programs for next year’s meetings. If you have any ideas, please let me know. I am looking forward to an exciting and fun 2020 for our South Whidbey Yacht Club!
Jim Rogers, Commodore SWYC

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November 2019 Newsletter

Commodore’s Farewell
This is my last newsletter message and it is with great gratitude that I say goodbye. It has been an honor to serve as Commodore for the past two years and I am so appreciative for the help and support that I have received from my amazing Board and all that they have accomplished in the past two years. Together they have succeeded in creating a new website and online communications, establishing a new kayaking group and a women’s group, developing a new environmental policy, and a soon to be available online, the Ship’s Store.
Please join me in thanking the SWYC Board and YSA Board for all of their hard work and dedication over the past two years.
Vice Commodore, Lisa Irwin
Rear Commodore, Jim Rogers
Secretary, Clay Canfield
Treasurer, Randy Weers
Membership, Kathy Rodgers
Members at Large:
Bob Eichenberger
Katy Shaner
Erin Masterson
Martha Ford
Michael Scott
Starke Scott
I look forward to seeing you all at the Commodore’s Ball to welcome in our new Board.
With Gratitude Sincerely,
Debra Richardson, Commodore SWYC

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October 2019 Newsletter

Commodore’s Message
The Wet Hens have a new name! Thanks to the help of Patty Maxfield, who canvassed for name suggestions,voting ended with a resounding vote for Windward Women!
I borrowed the Wet Hen name and idea of starting a yacht club women’s group a couple of years ago. It has been wonderful to see how, under the masterful leadership of Katy Shaner, the group has taken off and included fun activities and programs from movie night to a recent tour of Nichols Brothers. Whatever the name, what the women seem to enjoy the most is the opportunity to meet and have time to get to know fellow club members in a social gathering outside of the monthly membership meetings.
I look forward to watching the Windward Women continue to grow and define their mission and goals in the coming year.
It’s almost time for the 2019 Commodore’s Ball. Please mark your calendars for Saturday, November 9th. In accordance with our new environmental policy we will be sending invitations via email this year.
Expect to receive your email invitation sometime mid-October.
Debra Richardson, Commodore SWYC

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September 2019 Newsletter

Newsletter Editor’s Message
Bill and I moved to Whidbey Island from Vermont 14 years ago. Labor Day in the Northeast is the time to pull the boats out of the water, put away the lawn furniture and think about calling the snowplow guy. Here in the temperate PNW, we can cruise all year round, and instead of snow and ice, autumn promises new and exciting activities to look forward to. This month, the Wet Hens are sponsoring a kayak trip to West Beach and October brings the Land Cruise. On November 9th, we dust off our dancing shoes for the Commodore’s Ball and in December, we celebrate the Holidays with dinner and much merriment.
The Social Committee is already planning our monthly General Membership meetings. If you have cruising stories that you’d like to share at a monthly meeting, please contact Bruce Morris.
The Club has seven new members just waiting to join in the life of the Club. Please make them feel welcome. Be sure to think about signing up for committees and special projects. The Club needs your assistance in fulfilling its Mission.
We lost some good friends this past year – we keep them in our hearts as we move forward.
Dig out those fuzzy sweaters and let’s come together to celebrate the seasons at SWYC.
Jill Brown
Your Editor

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August 2019 Newsletter

Commodore’s Message
More than a Club
More than ever, I am so thankful for the privilege of being part of the SWYC. Thanks to my husband Russ, I was introduced to this wonderful community and group of people that have been such an important part of our lives since we moved to Whidbey Island 15 years ago. Since the day that we became involved, we have benefited from meeting a wonderful group of interesting, fun, dedicated, and amazing group of people that have enriched our lives immensely.
I have been so thankful to have the caring and support that everyone has given me since Russ’s passing. It reinforces what I have always felt. When people ask: what do I get for my membership dues? I am here to tell you that you get a community of caring friends who are by your side through fair and stormy times, which means more than anything to me.
Thanks to you all for your condolences and support,
Debra Richardson
Commodore SWYC

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June 2019 Newsletter

When the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills. ~Chinese Proverb
Thanks to the hard work of Erin Masterson the South Whidbey Yacht Club has a brand-new website! I hope that you all have taken some time to check it out and to update your profiles. One of the many benefits of this new site is that it gives each member to opportunity to control their own information and to provide an online bio as a way for members to get to know more about one another. The website calendar will also be your go to source for update information regarding club meetings and events.
I know that changes in technology can sometimes be challenging, (trust me I know), so don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions or need help in any way. Also please be sure to come to the June General Membership for more help and information.
I can’t thank Erin enough for all the many hours of time and hard work they donated to make this happen.
Debra Richardson
Commodore SWYC,

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May 2019 Newsletter

Opening Day is a centuries-old tradition of the yachting community which persists wherever there are sailors and thanks to Bob and Kathy Rodgers this tradition was carried on and enjoyed by all this past weekend.
From what I have read, Opening Day has involved all kinds of rituals from: cannon shots over the water to break the ice, to hoisting a rubber chicken and a Jack Daniels bottle up the mast. For the past two years it has been my honor to carry on SWYC founder Ken Sasson’s Rock and Sword ceremony. Like all traditions it gives us cause to commemorate and celebrate the passage of time.
So, I would officially like to say let the season begin. I hope to see you all at one of the many wonderful events that we have planned for the coming season.
Debra Richardson, Commodore

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March 2019 — Gratitude and Celebration

Russ and I have been members of the Yacht Club for almost 13 years, and one of the things that has impressed us are the connections and friendships that develop.  I know that new members sometimes feel that it’s hard to make friends, but the reality is that the club provides the perfect opportunity to meet like-minded people and develop new friendships – friends like Leonard and Linda Good and Gordon and Karen Labuhn, who have been a big part of the SWYC community over the years.   Friendships like these have been the most rewarding part of being members of SWYC and the opportunity to meet a group of pretty fantastic people. One of the best ways to get to know other members is to volunteer to work with Club projects and social events.
I know that it is sometimes daunting for new members to feel as if they are a part of the group at General Membership meetings and other functions.  Kathy Rodgers and the rest of the SWYC Board continue to work on making all members feel welcomed and included.   I encourage anyone to let me know if you have suggestions on how we can help everyone feel welcomed and a part of this wonderful community called The South Whidbey Yacht Club.
Debra Richardson, Commodore SWYC

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