NOVEMBER 2018 – NSA TIME
To every member of NSA THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH FOR MAKING 2018 NSA TIME!!! All 205 of you contributed to this being a great year! We had record participation for events such as the Shrimperoo, the Weeklong and several of our other events. This year’s Dinghy Poker Run set records for hands sold and money raised to contribute to HeartWorks! By observation (on my part and some biased feedback) we broke the fun meter at every event regardless of how many of you were there!!! Certainly you and I must Thank our Bridge and Directors for guiding us through a MARVELOUS 2018! BELIEVE ME THESE FOLKS WORKED VERY HARD to give you a great year and they accomplished their goals! The NSA plays hard and believes in good times but we are more than just fun. Including our donation to HeartWorks we contributed almost $7000.00 to community activities such as tuition for a Pamlico County youth to sailing camp, purchasing a new sail to support collegiate sailing and the Old Front Porch Festival. Be proud that we give back to a community that gives us so very much!
NSA TIME 2018 has passed rapidly! I have been Commodore twice and both times were great fun and very different. This year has been very uplifting because the club has been in a transitional year which has made us a stronger organization. Your 2019 Bridge and Directors is a very talented group that I believe will bring you a very exciting year. Under the leadership of Commodore Paul Griffin I expect to see continued growth and new ideas! Remember it is your responsibility to support your Bridge by stepping forward and offering your help with club activities! So please continue the same high level of participation and support as you did this year and THANK YOU for the opportunity and honor to have been your 2018 COMMODORE ( and a last tip of my hat to the Bridge and Directors of 2018)!
Look forward to seeing y’all soon!
Welcome from New Commodore
(words from Commodore's Ball)
I want to truly thank each and every one of you for granting me the opportunity to serve as your Commodore next year!
I wish I was there to honor and celebrate the outgoing bridge with you, especially Chuck Gordon who did an amazing job with the club this year.
Becky and I are so grateful that Carl and Wade stopped by and introduced themselves and the NSA back in December 2015 - our first weekend on the boat. The countless friends we have made and adventures we have been on has far surpassed all our expectations.
That I am now leading this great club, with the support of an all star Bridge, just 3 years later is a testament to how the NSA operates.
I know we can continue to build on that spirit and camaraderie with the club and have another fantastic year ahead!
Back to the drinks and dancing!!
Scary Weather for Halloween Cruise
This year's Halloween Cruise to Ocracoke was filled with many challenges especially wind, rain and waves on the beautiful but unpredictable Pamlico Sound. Though many people were unable to attend, seven vessels braved the rough seas and two couples even came by ferry! Once again, the NSA proved to be resilient and fun was had by all. Rumor has it, we may even have the makings of a great NSA female signing group, specializing in Georgy Girl and Turn Around (with their own lyrics, of course). Kudos to the die-hard pirate crew that made the trip, the rest of us were sad to miss out!
Becky and Paul Griffin
NSA New Members at the End of Year
Please help us welcome our new members: Erik and Jean Hardtle, Yacht members on “Knot Shore” a Gulfstar located at Duck Creek Marina and Yacht members Finola & Harry Corbett who live in Oriental. Finola and Harry don’t indicate that they have a vessel. Please introduce yourself and welcome them sharing news about the coming events and cruising schedule.
If any new member has not yet received their Welcome Burgee, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If anyone wants to replace a weathered burgee, I have a few available at $25.00. Just let me know and we’ll get it in the mail in time for our sailing season.
I would like to thank everyone who has helped during the past year make everyone welcomed into the Neuse Sailing Association. Your enthusiasm is contagious and everyone who has been a member for years or a new member has shared that enthusiasm. It has been evident in the participation at all our events. You made a difference.
2018 NSA Photo Contest
There have been so many beautiful images captured throughout the sailing season. It’s time to select your favorites to enter in the NSA Photo Contest. I hope to see several good selfies (new category for 2018) from the Commodore’s Ball this past weekend. Directions on how to enter your entries on the NSA website are coming later this month and in the Dec. Neuse Juice.
As a reminder the categories this year are:
All members are welcome, in fact encouraged, to enter the 2018 photo contest Dec. through 13 Jan. 2019. Select your best photos, filter them down to no more than five per category and get ready to enjoy all the submissions.
NSA and Hurricane Florence
It is the rare NSA member who was not affected by Hurricane Florence. The following three stories from members are dramatic and also heart-warmingly demonstrate how members reach out and help each other. Thank you all for looking out for each other!
Helping out in the aftermath
Hurricane Florence ripped through our sailing community in a fierce way. As hard as we all worked to prepare for the storm, damage was incurred to the health and vitality of our sailing community. Chip and Honey lost their girl Soundwave and Patrick McWherter lost Cosmic Sailing when the boats sailed off their pilings and traveled across the river. Carol Einhart’s Synchronicity was judged to be a total loss from storm damage sustained in her slip. Many other members had some damage to their boats, docks and property. Members Bob and Debra Burke suffered a double whammy when Bob suffered a heart attack requiring surgery and their anchored boat, UBetcha, broke free and landed in the marsh and mud.
Amidst the damage, loss and heartbreak (both literal and figurative), the beautiful thing was that this sailing community came together. Members were checking on boats for each other, raising lines during the storm, posting travel guidance, offering support and sympathy and working together to do whatever it takes to care for each other. Sailing, cruising and partying might be what we’re about but this group is full of heart too. It was clear during the storm and remains clear during the aftermath.
U Betcha recovered after numerous efforts;other NSA boats destroyed or damaged
After several rescue attempts by as many as a dozen NSA members over the weeks following Hurricane Florence, Bob and Debra Burke’s Catalina 27 U Betcha was finally towed from the marsh at the top of Greens Creek and returned to its slip at Blackwell Point Marina.
Bob and Debra, who are new NSA members, could not believe the efforts made by club members – strangers -- to help them recover their boat. They were especially grateful considering that Bob had suffered a mild heart attack preparing his boat for the storm and was unable to help.
That’s when the NSA stepped in. Crews including Carl Crothers, Wade Ellison, Chuck Gordon, Kevin Guilfoyle, Robert Pugh and Tracy Vail, Jason and Cara Keys, and John Burhman made several trips to the boat and worked trying to kedge it off to trees in the marsh. The boat was stuck in thick marsh grass in less than two feet of water. Despite those efforts, they only managed to pull the boat over and drag it a few feet.
The boat was finally pulled out with the assistance of a barge from Blackwell Point. While thieves made off with much of U Betcha’s equipment while it sat in the marsh, Bob reports that the boat is in generally good condition.
Several other members’ boats did not fare so well. Chip and Honey Johnson’s Catalina 40 Sound Wave and Patrick McWherter’s 35-foot catamaran Cosmic Sailing both floated off jack stands during the storm at Bridgepoint Marina and were destroyed. Numerous other members’ boats suffered various degrees of damage from piling rash and bent rub rails to crushed stations and perforated hulls. Thank goodness no one in the club was injured.
Florence took the lives of 41 people across 21 counties in North Carolina. While at its height the storm was a Category 4 with sustained winds of 140 mph, it made landfall near Wrightsville Beach as a Category 1. In that sense, we dodged a bullet. We would be wise to make Hurricane preparation a regular part of NSA seminar training.
Collegiate sailors give back
In the last few years we have seen an increase of younger people coming out to Oriental to sail--specifically with the collegiate regattas and spring break training organized by NC State SailPack team and Bow to Stern Boating in Oriental. In the aftermath of hurricane Florence, the teams who have enjoyed sailing in these programs wanted to give back to the Oriental community. On the weekend of November 10 and 11, SailPack hosted a Hurricane Regatta and Clean-up where at least 8 college teams, most from NC but at least two from VA, came to Oriental for some fierce sailing competition on Saturday and hurricane debris clean up on Sunday. Winds for the regatta were gusting up to 20 kts while sailors raced from 10:00 am through until 3:00 pm. That's youth, for you. On Sunday, the teams spread across the town, raking and cleaning up debris. They were especially appreciative of lunch provided by some of the folks whose yards they tidied! Thanks to NSA members, Pat and John Messer for hosting the Virginia Tech team. Giving back to the town that has hosted them in the past is also at the core of sailors from Virginia Tech as the VT motto is "Ut Prosim"--"that I may serve". The Clean-up day says a lot about Oriental as a town to inspire all these kids to come out to help. Kudos to SailPack and Bow to Stern for hosting the regatta.
Susanne and Bill Lovelace
Misto completes crossing the Indian Ocean
Cocos Keeling, Mauritius, Reunion and finally South Africa means that we have now completed crossing the Indian Ocean. We feel a deep sense of achievement with these passages now behind us.
Cocos Keeling is a series of coral atolls a few days sailing from Christmas Island. This remote Australian outpost has great snorkeling through “the Rip” between two of the islands, the opportunity for a rather crazy game of golf played across the airport runway and a sense of having a desert island entirely to oneself. With Ros back from the USA we departed a week behind the rest of the fleet and played catch up on the passage to Mauritius. Departing late actually meant that we had a better passage than the fleet, and although we had a few days of very lumpy conditions we did not see the 50 knot winds that preceded us.
Mauritius is a popular holiday destination with beautiful beaches and an interesting history of occupation by both the English and French. This means that all text books at school are in English but the language lessons are delivered in French! We arrived in time for a cultural tour of the island taking in rum distilleries, sugar cane factories and beautiful botanical gardens. Regrettably, here we were moored against a huge concrete wall in the Caudan basin and while touring the island, our fenders came out due to high tides and wake of passing boats, and we returned to find much of our starboard side badly scratched from rubbing against the concrete. Fortunately there was no structural damage. We hope to get this repaired in South Africa.
It’s only 130 nm from Mauritius to Reunion and so departing around 10 am we arrived early the following morning. We raced fairly hard on this leg and did multiple sail changes to accommodate changing wind conditions and our hard work paid off as we came first in the catamaran class on this leg. The island of La Reunion is a French overseas territory, and it felt more French than France itself! However the mix of cultures, exemplified by beautiful Hindu temples and evidence of Chinese culture, speak to its multicultural past and present. Touring this island means driving up unbelievably winding, steep roads to view the evince of the island’s volcanic past and along with Steve and Anita from Timshel, we drove into the center of the island and stayed the night in a small bed and breakfast home, in order to get the great views in the morning before the cloud comes down. Preceding our departure was a moving prayer ceremony with representatives from the Hindu, Muslim, Chinese and Catholic faiths, culminating in a a spectacular dragon dance.
Each time we drove south on the coast road in Reunion we saw paragliders and entranced by the spectacle we decided to try it for ourselves. After one abortive attempt where the weather meant a cancellation, we were driven up a steep hill to the launch site. Along with our pilots we leapt into the air and found ourselves in a world where the only sound was the wind and the views were spectacular.
Now came the big passage of 1370 nm from Reunion to Richards Bay in South Africa. We employed a weather router from the UK, Chris Tibbs, for this leg as the weather around the south of Madagascar and approaching South Africa can be extremely changeable and you can only approach the coast of South Africa with a northerly wind to cross the strong Agulhas current. This current is analogous to the Gulf Stream running of the US east coast, but is stronger and more dangerous. Waves of 200’ have been reported when strong southerly winds blow against this fast flowing south current.
This technically challenging passage was full of sail changes as we adjusted course and the weather rolled in from different directions and the currents in this part of the ocean ebbed and flowed with and against us. However with our great crew, Misto again showed what she can do. We completed the 1370 nm in 8 days and 8 hours with an average speed of around 6.7 kn. Along the way we encountered pretty much every imaginable sailing condition - squalls full of lightening lasting hours, huge swells of well over 12’, lumpy, bumpy seas that threw us around like a monohull, and a lot of close hauled sailing which is not a catamaran’s strong suit, but also beautiful sailing days where we flew the gennaker and romped along at 8-10 kn. Our timing for arrival in Richards bay was perfect with 20 kn of north easterly wind we easily crossed the Agulhas current flew towards the finish line with following seas. We were the first monohull across the finish line and the second boat in - arriving before the majority of the monohulls! We feel a great sense of achieve this, and sense of having come home. As many of you know we lived in South Africa in the 1980’s and 90’s and are really looking forward to our time here.
Ros and Howard Cheetham