Spring Commodore’s Letter, 2018 edition

SLSC – Spring Commodore’s Letter from Richard Roberts


I’m baaacckk!  Hello everyone and welcome to another year of sailing at SLSC.  I am excited to be back as Commodore.  I think Will and David wanted to make sure I was kept busy in my retirement and so they recruited me to return (however, I don’t remember hearing anything about a signing bonus – oh well).

I’d like to thank Will for all the hard work he has done as Commodore.  In particular, he was instrumental in getting the Feva fleet going and helped co-ordinate our great 60th anniversary celebration.  The good news is that Will is staying on as a director to help me out as I transition back into the role.

I would also like to thank Marie Day who is stepping down as Treasurer.  She has kept us solvent for a number of years now and all her efforts have been very appreciated.  Jeff Harris is stepping in as the new Treasurer and Marie is in the process of bringing him up-to-speed to ensure a smooth handover.

I am writing this letter surrounded by another 8 inches of snow/ice that we received this week.  However, I’m sure spring is just around the corner and I will be putting my Laser in the water soon.

Let’s get into the details of the summer of 2018…

Highlights of Summer Schedule

This year, in addition to our full slate of regular junior club activities, there will be a number of special events:

Mid-Ontario Regatta

The Mid-Ontario’s will be held on July 28/29 and is for Lasers, Radials, Club420s and Fevas.  We typically have about 125 boats registered with a total of 200 attendees/volunteers involved.  A number of junior clubs from around Ontario come to the regatta and we provide lawn space for tents and beds for master sailors/coaches. We will be looking for hosts to billet our quests.  Please contact [email protected] if you can help out. We are also looking for someone to co-ordinate the Saturday night dinner (we already have a location). If someone is willing to do this, please let us know at [email protected] – we can meet with the long-time dinner co-ordinator/consultant, Anne Desbrisay, who can help provide us with a to-do list.

Non-Gala Gala

We will be hosting a non-Gala Gala fund raiser this year on Aug 11 at the club.  Our goal is to raise funds to replace the docks and to continue to build/maintain our fleet of boats.  The registration fees from the junior program are not able to support these capital needs.

Entry will be free, with hors d’oeuvres and an open bar.  However, sitting right in front of the bar will be a donation table where you will be able to contribute what you can, and receive a tax receipt.  You will also be able to bid on items in the silent action that will be part of the event. If you have something you would like to contribute to the silent auction please send me a note at [email protected]

It should be a fun night.

Joan Young Art Show

Joan Young has created a book of 80 paintings she has done of cottages around Sturgeon Point.  The book will be on sale starting on June 30 at a kickoff event at the Colborne Street Gallery in Fenelon Falls (see details below).  Proceeds of the book sale will be donated to the sailing club, golf club and church.  So please come out and support the event. FYI – the original paintings will also be available for purchase!

Important Summer Dates

June 30 – Joan Young Art Show
July 2 – First day of club
July 28-29 – Mid Ontario Regatta
Aug 4-5 – Civic Regatta, Barbecue and Prizegiving
Aug 11 – non-Gala Gala
Aug 24 – Last day of club, Prizegiving and AGM
Aug 25 – Club Community Clean Up Day and Closing

2018 Summer Sailing Program

Last year we made some major changes to the program and we had a very successful season.  This year, based on input from the instructors, we are making some minor adjustments.  Please see details of the programs offered at this link SLSC Programs.  Here are the highlights:

Morning Program

There are no changes to the Wetfeet or CANSail 1 through 3 programs.

We are continuing the extended morning (ie to 1:30) for CANSail 4 through 6, but we are expanding it to all days except Wednesday (Fun Day).  Last year the extended morning was only two days and the CANSail 5 &6 groups also came back for an afternoon session on Mondays.  It was felt that staying out on the water longer for more days was more effective than coming in, derigging, going home for lunch and then coming back in the afternoon.  This will also result in the CANSail 4s getting another 2 hours of instruction during the week.

Try Sailing Week

We are going to offer the Try Sailing program again for two weeks this summer (weeks of July 2 and July 16).  This is an introductory program for kids aged 9 to 13 who want to get a feel for sailing.  It will be held in the afternoons from 1:30 to 4:00.  Hopefully they’ll like it so much they will want to join the full morning program!

Race Teams

We will again have the Senior and Feva race teams under the same structure as last year. This year Cansail 4 sailors are automatically enrolled in the Senior Race team with no additional fees.

We have renamed the Opti Team to the CANSail 2 Development Team.  Our plan is to enable these sailors to improve their skills, including racing using the Optis, Picos and Fevas.

The instructors have put together a tentative regatta schedule as follows:

Tentative Regatta Schedule

July 6-8 – SailFest Sarnia
July 19-22 – Steerers/Four Sisters at PCYC
July 28-29 – Mid Ontario’s
Aug 9-10 – Cottage Club at Stoney Lake
Aug 13-17 – CORK at Kingston

Participation in regattas is optional, but for those sailors who attend, we will need support from their parents.

Please contact the instructors (before they contact you) to indicate how you can help with transporting sailors and boats, accommodation and general chaperoning. [email protected]

At regattas, the Club will provide coaching, boats, equipment and trailers, and will cover coaches’ salaries, fees and expenses.  Parents are responsible for regatta registration fees, their child’s meals and accommodation, and driver and chaperone expenses.  Further details for parents of Race Team members will be provided by the coaches.

Fun Stuff

What would SLSC be without the fun stuff!  All the regular extracurricular activities will continue – Wednesday Fun Day including Pizza lunch (covered by your registration fee), Friday dances, Tuesday movie nights. These events will be organized by the instructors and the senior sailors as the summer progresses. Details will be announced on the website, via emails and on twitter.

Adult Sailing Instruction

We would like to gauge the interest of the SLSC community in adult group sailing lessons. Our thoughts are that these would be held in the evenings or on weekends.  Expected fees for group lessons would be $20 per hour per person, subject to there being sufficient interest.  Private lessons are also available, with rates to be determined

Please contact me at [email protected] if this would be of interest, indicating what days/weekends you would be interested in participating.

Sunday Afternoon Racing

We will be continuing the Sunday Afternoon racing program this summer (dates TBD). Racing is available for anyone who is interested in coming out. We will have starts for Lasers, 420s, Fevas and any other class who wants to come out for some fun. If you don’t have someone to sail with, come down and we will match you up with somebody. Maybe parents would like to sail with their kids? It’s a fun race day so come on out. 

Instructor Team 2018

This year we have some returning instructors and some new faces.  Plus, we are doing some job sharing to enable more of our local sailors to get some teaching experience.  Adele DesBrisay is our head instructor and will be a roving instructor helping out groups that have a large enrollment.  Kate Gilchrist is the assistant head and the Wet Feet instructor.  Margaret Wilkins is the CANSail 5/6 instructor and the Senior Race Team Coach. Matt Newhouse is the CANSail 4 instructor.  Sophie Heldman will be teaching CANSail 3 and Madeleine DesBrisay CANSail 2. Alison Sears, Molly-Rose Ramsay and Jack DesBrisay are CANSail 1/2 instructors in July. Scarlett Farr and Meg Gilchrist are CANSail 1/2 instructors in August.

Look for their personal bios on the website soon.  They are always very entertaining.

Registration & Fees

It will be necessary to raise our fees this year to adjust for the new minimum wage rules in Ontario. We have tried to keep these increases to a minimum.

Our fees for the Wet Feet, and CanSail 1-3 morning programs will increase $10 per week from last year, to $210/wk.  The Feva Race Team and CANSail 2 Development Team fees have been increased by $5 per week to $35/wk.

As mentioned earlier, we have increased our core programming hours for CANSail 4s by 2 hours per week to match the hours that CANSail 5/6s receive and we have removed the race team fee for the CANSail4s.  As a result, CANSail4 fees have been increased by $25 per week to $245/wk.  And CANSail 5/6 fees have been increased by $10 per week to $245/wk.

In summary, our new fee structure is as follows:

CANSail Level Core Fee Race Team Race Team Fees
Wetfeet/CANSail 1 $210/week*    
CANSail 2 $210/week* Development Team $35 per week
CANSail 3 $210/week* Feva Team $35 per week
CANSail 4/5/6 $245/week* Senior Team No additional fee

*Fees are reduced for the week of August 7, which is a shortened week.

*Each sailor’s first week registration cost will be an additional $18 to offset fees we pay to Ontario Sailing for each sailor in our program.

As always, no one will be turned away because of financial challenges.  There are several programs available that can offer support (such as JumpStart, KidSport).  In addition, there are a limited number of bursaries available that Leslie Thomas will continue to administer on the club’s behalf.  If you require assistance with fees, please speak with Leslie Thomas at (416) 234-5506 (Toronto) or at (705) 887-2821 (Sturgeon Point) or email in confidence to [email protected]

Enrollment Cap

The unfortunate downside to the tremendous popularity of the club is that we must institute enrollment caps to ensure not only that our instructor resources are not spread too thinly, but that your children can have the best possible experience at the club.  In our experience there have only been a few occasions where we have reached the caps in the past.  Waiting lists will be maintained if enrollment reaches the cap, and if we are able to shuffle resources to accommodate additional sailors, we will notify those on the waiting lists as soon as practicable.  Our online registration system will clearly show how many spots remain available in each program.

This year we are reducing the complexity of handling the enrollment caps by grouping the registrations by type of boat, rather than by level.  The caps are defined for Wetfeet, CANSail 1/2, CANSail3 and CANSail 4/5/6.  This will allow for flexiblity among the levels that use the same boat type.

Online Registration

Programs and Registration

Volunteers Needed!

The sailing club (and the board) rely on the generous support of the parents and the community to ensure the success of our various events through the summer.  Please let us know if you are able to help.  You can contact us at [email protected] 

In particular we need help with the following:

Mid Ontario Saturday night dinner
Mid Ontario Breakfasts
Mid Ontario Sunday Lunch
July 28
July 28-29
July 29
Billeting for Mid Ontario’s July 27/28
Civic Regatta dinner Aug 5

News from our Neighbours at the Sturgeon Point Golf Club

Sturgeon Point Golf Club Junior Programs

Once again, the Golf Club is offering junior golf programs for kids from the age of 7. For details visit their website, or their junior golf registration page: Golf has always been a good complement to sailing!

Sturgeon Point Classic & Gala, July 7, 2018

The Sturgeon Point Golf Club is once again hosting the (now “annual”!) Sturgeon Point Classic fundraiser.  For more details on this, and other Golf Club programs.  We encourage you to visit their new website and sign up for their email newsletter.

Your Support

We are always thankful for the generosity and support of our community.  As you know (and are reminded at least annually!) we rely heavily on your financial support to maintain and upgrade our facilities and sailing equipment.  You may donate online at any time via the link below, and receive a tax receipt immediately.

Please Donate now… operators are standing by….  😉

SLSC’s Board

Here is a list of the hard working volunteer members of the board.  Feel free to contact any of us if you have questions:

Nicholas Breyfogle
Steve Crighton
David DesBrisay
Richard Farr
Christina Hall
Jeff Harris
Will Ollerhead
Greg  Taylor
Storey Wilkins
Brad Wilson
James Wisener

Leave a Comment