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2005 Spring Newsletter

March 2005 – Spring Newsletter

Ed Desmarais, Commodore

Greetings to all!

The Board of Governors (BOG) has been working diligently over the winter to make 2005 another great year! We hope to build on our many successes and to continue to make improvements to the club and our programs.

The 2004 fiscal year presented ongoing fiscal challenges. When compared with historical trends, the 2004 operating budget used very conservative revenue estimates and generous increases in anticipated expenses that resulted in a balanced operating budget. Although we used very conservative planning assumptions and made significant efforts to steward our resources, we were unable to use the traditional method of transferring excess operating monies to the capital budget. Therefore, the capital resource reserves we drew upon to fund the 2003 operating deficit and to pay for the porch renovations leave us with minimal reserves.

For the upcoming 2005 operating budget, the BOG is once again using conservative revenue and expense assumptions. We anticipated continued double digit growth in expenses in several areas (e.g. insurances, fuel) over which we have no control. The increases in dues and boat fees reflect anticipated increases in expenses. I assure you, the BOG made and will continue to make every effort to keep our dues and fees reasonable and to control our expenses without adversely impacting the level of services and quality of programs. Once again, we rely heavily on your volunteer efforts and Contributions in support of the club and its programs.

To address the minimal capital reserves, the BOG took two actions. The first is to institute a separate and, (planned to be) temporary, scaled, capital fee. The capital fee is scaled by membership level. The amount raised through the separate capital fee will partially fund the 2005 capital needs.

The temporary nature of the capital fee depends on the success of the second (action) initiative. The BOG has undertaken a formal and permanent development program. The development program reflects:

• raising funds for specific needs similar to the episodic fund raising methods SBYC traditionally uses,

• recognizing the average annual capital requirements for infrastructure and equipment planned replacement (Presented at the 2004 business and annual meetings.),

• identifying future capital requirements to sustain operations and infrastructure, and

• centralizing the fund raising activities for SBYC and the Sailing Program.

Please review the Development Committee section for additional details on this initiative and the House Committee section for details on known capital projects and their respective costs.

With the frank financial discussion behind us, let’s also recognize our successes and the opportunities ahead of us. Some of the 2004 successes include a new ice maker, a bicycle rack, a GPS plotter for the committee boat, complete replacement of the tables and chairs, and the weather station. Ned Jeffries, our vice-commodore and fleet captain, is working on a number of projects. Ned has invigorated our financial and fiduciary planning with a professional approach (asset preservation (e.g. lease of T-Wharf), risk management (e.g. insurance), treasury (e.g. bookkeeping, reporting) and budgeting (e.g. operating and capital budgets) while maintaining SBYC’s spirit.

Frank Hassler and the House Committee’s primary focus will be to maintain our existing physical plant and track several capital projects. The most significant are to replace the sewage system and to build a new float. I encourage you to review the House Committee report and to volunteer to participate on the committee.

The 2005 social calendar started in February with the third annual SBYC ski trip in North Conway, NH. More than thirty, hearty souls enjoyed the camaraderie. It was a great start to the year! Pam Jacobson has a full slate of activities planned for the year. I encourage you to mark your calendars to reserve the dates for these activities.

Beth Leahy and her Membership Committee plan a robust spring and summer member-recruiting season. New members keep our sailing exciting, foster new friendships, and are essential to the future of the club. Recruiting new members and maintaining existing members will be one of the critical activities for the upcoming year. Look for promotional materials and several events that will invite and encourage prospective members to join us. Your help is essential!

Jim Lidington and the Race Committee will continue the great racing we have had in recent years. Please plan for a PRO one-day course in May and a rule seminar in June to review the new US Sailing rule book. In the spirit of prudent fiscal management, we will continue the practice of race committee volunteerism.

Bill McKinney is the BOG’s primary contact with the Junior Yacht Club. In 2004, the BOG instituted a Sailing Program subcommittee to assist the Sailing Program Director. Bill and Joe Chambers are the BOG representatives to the Sailing Program. The BOG is excited that Liz Fiumara will return as our Sailing Program director. Liz attended the US Sailing Director’s conference in Florida this past January. She and the Sailing Program subcommittee have had a busy winter. Look for new and innovative programs in the upcoming year.

Ed Desmarais, Commodore

Treasurer. Last year there was a great improvement in the financial status of the club over 2003. To close out the Operating Fund to a zero balance required less than $2000 as compared with more than $12,000 in 2003. Late revenues for 2004 and the prepayment of workmen’s compensation for 2005 resulted in a balanced budget for 2004. The Commodore will explain the direction the club will take this year to address all capital improvements in the future.

Changes have been made in our insurance policies to increase clubhouse and locker values in the event of storm and fire damage. As the club does not host large sailing boat ocean racing, our regatta policy for $5,000,000 was not renewed last year, as we had coverage for $1,000,000 in our marine policy.

John Harper, Treasurer

Development Committee. Historically, SBYC has reacted to rather than planned for capital projects. Donations and events (e.g. art auction for the crane) have been the primary fund raising methods. In addition, when they occurred, the BOG transferred operating surpluses to the capital account.

Starting in 2002, the BOG began to analyze the club’s building and equipment (based on a physical inventory) to determine the projected capital replacement amounts and the timing for replacement. The BOG undertook this analysis to present a clearer picture to the membership of the increasing demand for sizable capital project fund raising. At the 2004 business and annual meetings, Ned Jeffries presented the results of the analysis. On average, the club’s annual capital project needs are approximately $12,000 and the Sailing Program capital project needs are about $10,000. The club’s known 2005 capital projects approximate $20,000. This figure does not include repaying the club’s capital reserve funds (approximately $20,000) used to cover the operating deficit and front porch projects in 2003. The club has approximately $20,000 remaining in capital reserves and about half of those funds are earmarked (e.g. dredging).

For several years, the BOG discussed, at great length, the very modest capital reserves, the known needs, the capital funding sources, and the capital acquisition methods. In light of these discussions, the BOG has a two-part approach to address these issues. The first approach is to institute a planned temporary capital fee that is in addition to the membership fee. The BOG anticipates the fee will be in place for the 2005 and 2006 seasons. The second approach is to implement a development program to fund the capital needs for the club and the Sailing Program. The BOG formed a Development Committee. The responsibilities of the committee are to identify and prioritize the capital needs, to match sources of capital with each need, and to organize and to acquire capital funds for the club and the Sailing Program. The BOG anticipates the Development Committee will need two years to initiate and implement capital acquisition methods so the BOG can eliminate the capital fee.

Norma Brettell

House Committee. Current activities: The facilities and equipment continue to be in good shape for the coming season. We have compiled a capital project list that we hope to pursue over the next several years as funding becomes available. Unfortunately this year, the budget constraints permit us to tackle only the highest priority projects.

We have to replace an engine cover on the Whaler motor that was blown away in the storm last fall (proceeds from insurance + $1,000 deductible). The main sewer line under the club leading to the street is split and must be replaced ($3,500 estimated). We hope to replace one float at an estimated cost of $2,900 and the freezer would cost $500 to $600 if last year’s arrangements don’t work out. The capital fee introduced this year should generate sufficient revenue to meet these needs.

In the longer term, we must overhaul the Committee boat engine. We estimate a cost of around $3,000 to $5,000. We have already deferred this expense for over a year, and with time, the risk of deterioration or failure increases. One additional float must be replaced soon. We also need to replace the windows and doors. This winter’s blizzards left us with major snowdrifts inside the club, both upstairs and down. It will be expensive, but the magnitude is currently unknown. Other projects include a new furnace for the club, and refurbishment of the small hoist. If club members are inclined to make a contribution toward the purchase of these items we can accelerate our treatment of them.

Work Day. Please reserve Saturday, May 14 as the date for the Spring Work Day. We will begin at 8:30 and serve lunch to all of our volunteers. Sunday, May 15 will be the rain date, or May 21 if that doesn’t work out. The activities currently planned are:

  • Sand and varnish rockers,
  • Painting (e.g. trim on the front of the club, the eaves under the lockers),
  • Repairing club floats,
  • Minor woodworking projects,
  • Maintaining and cleaning the deck,
  • Updating plant and equipment inventory for capital budgeting process,
  • Miscellaneous other start of the season activities.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any suggestions for additional House Committee projects. I look forward to seeing many of you on May 14.

Frank Hassler

Race Committee. Believe it or not, Memorial Day Weekend is right around the corner and with it comes the start of the 2005 racing season at SBYC!

New racing rules are in effect for this year and so we will be scheduling a seminar in June to cover the changes and brush up on our knowledge. Note that there are rule changes affecting Race Committee work as well as racing, so this should be an interesting session for everyone involved in SBYC racing.

On May 1, Steve Jeffries will be presenting a PRO course at the club. This will be a comprehensive, fullday seminar sanctioned by US Sailing. At the end of the day, US Sailing members will have the option to be tested for their PRO certification. There will be a nominal fee of $29 to cover classroom materials and lunch. I strongly encourage anyone interested in the finer points of Race Committee work to join us.

The Race Committee, House Committee, and Club Manager have been working hard this off-season on a new, enhanced Racing Schedule for 2005. The new schedule features an extended Mid-Week Series and a new September Series to be held on Saturdays. These changes will allow us to take advantage of the long days of spring as well as the excellent September weather we get here in Rockport!

The Race Committee is very pleased to announce the return of Andrew Greely as our weekend PRO with Ron Petoff running the Mark Boat. Assisting Andrew and Ron will be our always intrepid contingent of volunteers. I would also like to encourage anyone interested in Race Committee work to contact me (781-444-1084) so you can get involved. It’s a great way to get out on the water and participate in the racing action at SBYC.

All told, we’ve got a fantastic season planned for 2005, so get your boat tuned up and enjoy the best one-design racing in the area!

Race Schedule

Jim Lidington

Social Committee. The social committee is looking forward to another great summer, full of lots of food and dancing. We’re all onto the dance floor on August 5’" at the Country Club to dance to the band MADHOUSE. I’m sure we’ll all be able to predict the weather for that day! HOT!! The theme: "SHELL WE DANCE?"

Brackett’s Ocean View Restaurant will again provide our dinner and view for the Annual Spring Dinner to kick-off our season on May lat. In order to have all the seating in the main dining room; we are limited to 90 people, so please send in your reservation early. Invite a new member to come along with you.

The Pancake Breakfast team is at it again!! Mark your calendars for Monday, May 30th. Come for breakfast from 9-11:00 a.m.  Sunday Morning coffees continue to be an important tradition to the life at SBYC. This is a terrific opportunity to sit with a cup of coffee and make conversation with someone new. Many volunteers are needed to make these coffees successful. Please check the sign up sheet on the social bulletin board at the club and consider hosting a coffee .., doesn’t have to be fancy. I have discovered that our membership will eat pretty much anything. I will make the coffee, so it’s ready at 9:30. I just need bakers or shoppers. The sign up sheet is on the social bulletin board in the clubhouse.

The cookbook is rolling along smoothly, but we would like as many members to participate as possible, men and women!! Please forward any recipes to me: Pam Jacobson, 3 Briarstone Rd, Rockport. Or email them to Thelma Gordon at Hurry!! We want this ready to be printed by late spring.

All of our events require some planning and on-site manual labor. We always welcome anyone who is willing to help in any way. This year, we will need extra help to make the dance a success! There’s a job for anyone. If you would like to help, just make your wishes known, and give me a call.

Check out the social events and mark your calendars. Be a part of an active and fun community. Keep your eyes on the bulletin board for information and sign-ups for the upcoming events.

Social Calendar 

Pam Jacobson

Membership Committee. The membership committee is working to increase membership for the upcoming season. We really need to try to get our membership numbers back up. Recruiting new members and maintaining existing members will be our priority. We will be working on a brochure which will showcase all that our yacht club has to offer. Any input and/or photos will be welcomed. We look forward to a fun-filled, member-filled 2005 season.

Beth Leahy

SBYC Fleet Captain. As part of a broad effort to extend the length of the sailing and racing season, the Board of Governors is in the process of developing a Winter Storage Policy that will address new arrangements for those wishing to store their boats at the club in the off-season. While the specifics of the new policy are not available as of press time, we expect that the starting date for the winter storage period will be moved to later in September than the current third Sunday of the month and the end date will be moved earlier in May from the current date of the Thursday prior to Memorial Day. We do not envision a substantial change in the fee structure, beyond a modest increase to cover higher costs, but are considering instituting a monetary penalty for those who extend the storage period beyond the new dates. In summary, the Board has found that there is substantial demand from club members to start the season earlier and end it later than in recent years that warrants truncating the winter storage period at both end of the season. The new policy will be posted on the club website as soon as it is available and, in addition, winter storage boat owners will be notified directly of any policy changes that have an impact on the spring schedule.

Ned Jeffries

Junior Yacht Club. This year’s Co-Commodores: Kaitlyn Carter, Molly Fiumara, and Kayleigh Keating are planning an exciting and very activity-filled summer. Junior members should watch for posters announcing various events this year. In addition to hosting the Linda Wieditz Memorial Regatta, the Junior YC has been approached by the Mass Bay Sailing Organization to sponsor a Sears Cup – Juniors in Flying Scots. Other events that will keep our juniors busy are the Mass Bay USA Junior Olympic Sailing Festival which is going to be held at the Cottage Park YC in Winthrop, and Marblehead Race Week in July. The annual cookouts on Cape Hedge Beach during the first and second sailing sessions as well as other activities should be anticipated by all. We hope that the excellent turnout will be surpassed in 2005.

Bill McKinney

Scholarship and Sailing Program Advisory Committee. The role of the SSP Advisory Committee is to work alongside the Sailing Director to establish goals and objectives for the sailing program. The committee is proud to have among its members Becky Hoerner, Anne Kubik, Joe Chambers, Charlie Clark, Bill McKinney and Greg Wilkinson. In the short time that it has been in existence, it has helped Liz Fiumara formulate the 2005 Sailing Program budget, participate in the Miami Symposium, assign mentor roles and has provided advice in hiring new instructors. In future meetings the committee will help develop curriculum, plan events, and formulate an action plan. The committee members are very thankful to the leadership of Commodore Ed Desmarais in establishing this committee.

Bill McKinney

2005 Sailing Program.  As I walk through the halls of Rockport High school, I am so pleased to know almost every student by name. I realize that I know all of these students because they have grown up taking sailing at Sandy Bay. I am so fortunate to return to Sandy Bay for my third summer as Program Director. Although we have been hit once again with another snowstorm, the program is anxiously awaiting the first swim and capsize test on June 27, 2005. Sailors returning to the program will see a few new faces around the yacht club on both the 420 and Optimist staff. We have a few changes in our calendar due to blizzards, but not to worry, the warm southwest afternoon breezes will be here before you know it! Please note the important dates below:

  • Registration: Saturday, May 7th (For Junior and Adult Sailors)
  • Session 1: June 27th – July 22nd (Juniors and Adults)
  • Session 2: July 25th – August 12 , August 22nd – August 26th
  • (No Sailing lessons: August 15th – August 19th)

Detailed Information will be found in the sailing program brochure that you will be receiving shortly.

Adult registrations may be done by mail or in person on Saturday, May 7th, 2005.

Please feel free to contact me by email with any additional questions to . I look forward to seeing everyone as soon as we all shovel out!

Liz Fiumara


Ellie Stevens

Web Site. First, thanks to all who donated to make the weather station and web cam a reality. This has been an extremely popular feature for club members, the local fishing fleet, the community in general, and others. If you haven’t seen this, check it out! Improvements to the site are continuing, and in the works is a new format for presenting club news, where the Board of Governors, Fleet Captains, Committees, Junior Yacht Club, and the Sailing Program will be able to post news and notices.

Ron Petoff

Rockport Harbor Department. Spring is just around the corner – so they say, and we are all thinking of the upcoming boating season. In your spring preparation keep safety in mind by checking your boat from stem to stern and replacing any worn or old gear. Before your boat goes in the water have your mooring gear checked and don’t forget the regulation mooring buoy – white with the blue horizontal stripe – clearly mark your name and length of boat on the top half of the buoy above the strip. Also make your hurricane/storm plans ahead of time so your boat can be quickly taken out of the water and safely stored for the duration of the storm. The more preparation you make ahead of time, the easier time you and your fellow boaters will have when a bad weather situation occurs.

The Rockport Harbor Department appreciates all the joint efforts between the Sandy Bay Yacht Club and our Department. We thank you for making our job a little easier. Have a safe and happy boating season!

Harbor Office Hours: Thursdays 7p. m – 8:30p.m. T-Wharf

harbormaster@town. rockport. ma. us

Harbormasters Rosemary Lesch and Scott Story
Asst. Harbormasters Ron Petoff and Story Reed

Posted on March 27th, 2005 by Administrator in General News