RIYC June 2018 Newsletter

Commodore’s Message – Gary Annino


I want to start by reminding the membership that as members of the Noank community we should be mindful of the local speed limits. Our neighbors have expressed concern.

Next, I’d like everyone to visit the revamped website. A lot of thought and effort went into improving the look and functionality. A special thanks to Lorna Conahan and Rush Hambleton for this great effort.

I’d also like draw your attention to some initial feedback/concern from our strategic planning efforts. There is some concern expressed about the ability of the club to recover from a natural disaster and stabilize any impact until such time that a recovery plan can be identified and funded by the membership. There will be more to follow on this topic shortly as the trustees consolidate our thoughts on how best to address this valid concern raised.

On a safety note, we have added prop guards to all of our chase boats.

Website Update – Lorna Conahan and Rush Hambleton

The new website is up and running! Check it out!  www.ramislandyachtclub.org

Moving forward all newsletter items will be delivered in this new email form and also appear on the website.

If you have any questions about the web page, reach out to Lorna at lorna.conahan@gmail.com.

Finalizing the website

Report from the Strategic Planning Committee – Blake Powell

Thanks to everyone who participated in the strategic planning workshop last month. We had an excellent turnout and received valuable input. The strategic planning committee is busy compiling the results from the member survey and workshop. Based on the members’ input, the Committee and Trustees will be focusing on the following strategic areas:

  • Improving the Club’s resiliency to severe weather and high-water events;
  • Developing programs and activities to enhance member engagement and sense of community;
  • Ensuring the Club is on a financially sound footing, improving member recruitment and outreach efforts;
  • Increasing boating and on-water activities; and
  • Implementing general facility improvements.

The Committee and Trustees will be working on short-term and long-term solutions to address these areas, and we will be looking for additional member participation and input in the near future.

Report from the Entertainment Committee – Sandy Turner and Rodney Denman

First, there was the Pot Luck Dinner on May 19th. Thank you, Sonya and RJ Nickerson and crew–Mary McFadden, Tom Morgan, Pat and Tod Schaefer, for your great job and set up.  Great food provided by attendees.  Although a small turn out it was a fun party.

Second, the Memorial Day Picnic on May 28th.  Thank you to our Trustees for putting on a great event (and to whoever called in a good weather-favor).  Also, thank you to the members who brought salads and desserts.  Again, it is a team effort!  Highlights – Moving the party to 4 pm greatly improved attendance which was a record (or at least tied) in recent years.

Third, The Family Pig Roast on June 2nd. Thank you, Amy and Gerry Leger for hosting and to your crew- Clint and Kate Rand, Chris Daniels, Karen Christian, Elain and Brunson Dodge, Carol and Dana Oviatt and Tom Morgan and April  Job well done!


To round out the parties we just had the Past Commodores and New Members Party on June 16th (with the phenomenal weather!). Thank you, Sherry and Alfie Fritzsche for hosting and to your crew- Patsy Fritzsche, Eunice and John Sutphen, Joan Sienkiewicz, Joyce and Glenn Gardner, Cathy Cook, Ann Budding and John Orzech. Job well done!  This event had a huge turnout (130+!), and we announced our new members and 50-year members–cheers!  The food provided was delicious and well-planned out.


A side note: When a party calls for an RSVP we ask that you please make an effort to respond, and be careful that each half of a couple doesn’t respond “yes for two.”  Our hosts for these parties depend on an accurate count of anticipated patrons to make sure there’s the right amount of food.  There will be times, of course, that you plan to attend and an emergency comes up, or a prior commitment falls apart last-minute that allows you attend – we understand!  But thank you for making sure to RSVP!

Entertainment Committee – is looking for Club Members to host and crew parties this year.  Volunteering is what makes RIYC great!  Please remember: if we want to host but never have and would like a little help to get you started, please ask us–we can offer guidance (and the “party planning notes” from past years’ events are always available), or connect you with experienced past hosts who can give some direction.  We thank all of you who have helped with the parties this past year!!

Report from the Junior Program

Junior Sailing – Ann Bergendahl

  • Junior Sailing starts Monday, June 25th.
  • Almost 40 junior sailors are enrolled.
  • Check out the Jr. Sailing section of the club’s new website for the full schedule of events this summer.
  • If you would like to be on our mailing list, please sign up on the website.
  • Please let us know if you are interested in helping out this summer with the Regattas and activities.  Specifically, we are looking for crash boat volunteers on regatta days (July 17th and July 26th), someone to lead/teach “colors” to the kids at a Thursday Night Picnic, and someone who might want to host the kids on Big Boat Day this summer (Date TBD).

Junior Activities / Thursday Nights – Tina McLoughlin

Thursday Night Cookouts have begun!  The 1st food truck of the season is this Thursday.  Other planned activities include:

  • Thursday 6/28: 6 pm “Jr Sailing Kick-off” party (Rolling Tomato pizza food truck and s’mores)
  • Thursday 7/12: 6 pm Luau  (Chester’s BBQ)
  • Monday 7/16: 8 pm Astronomy Night (rain date is 7/18)
  • Thursday 8/2: 6 pm Freak Rig Competition
  • Thursday 8/16: 6 pm Awards Ceremony (Rolling Tomato pizza truck and ice cream bar)

Report from the Race Committee

Race Ashore – Matt Curtiss

M Curtiss is in discussions with Gray Sail, which is interested in sponsoring the event.  The committee is working on numbers to figure out how many hats we would want to purchase.

Race Afloat – Moise Solomon

Trophies are ready to be ordered! The cost is $1500 plus shipping. We are looking for more volunteers to help with check-in.  Results will be on “Yacht Scoring”.  S. Turner suggested that a flier is sent to other yacht clubs to advertise the event.

Report from the House Committee – Matt Lettrich

A “clean-team” tackled the loft and instructor areas.  Consideration is being given to ways to maximize the storage within the loft area so that it is more functional.  The siding is complete, and a contractor is being engaged to complete the flashing.

Report from the Waterfront Committee – Stan White

Several weeks ago, Noank was subjected to several days of high winds, primarily from the east and northeast. This wind direction places high loads on the chain/anchor mooring system as well as our floating docks and fixed pier. Fortunately, the Optimists were not stored in the racks, but there were several boats tied to the floating docks and fixed pier, and they were asked to move the boats to moorings.

It was noted by the RIYC Officers that the float and pier use policy has to be clarified to protect our valuable assets – no boats are to be secured to the floats and pier during predicted storm events.

It is also recognized that the policy for the use of docks by non-members who share boats with RIYC members needs to be clarified.

A waterfront policy update committee has been formed (S. White, J. McCrae and D. Spear) and will meet before the next Board Meeting with the recommended policy changes.


Last Voyage

New Members

  • Kelsey Conahan
  • Jeff and Karen Christian
  • Chris O’Donnell

Cruise News – Stan White

Send an email to Stan White if you plan to attend the planned cruise.

  • The Fall Cruise will be held September 14th – 17th with the intended destination of Block Island, Cuttyhunk and Third Beach. We might need four or five nights!
The sun is over the yardarm during the June cruise!

Safety for Cruising Couples (Including “Suddenly Alone”) a Cruising Club of America (CCA) one-day training to be held at RIYC on July 7, 2018. Contact Stan White if you are interested.

Groton Small Boat Day is being held on Saturday, June 30, 10am-2pm at Esker Point. Noank Rowing Club and a few volunteers from RIYC are lending a hand.  Come on down.

  • Try out a kayak, sailboat, paddleboard, or sliding seat shell.   (life jackets provided)
  • Meet with distributors of small boats.
  • Learn about water sports and recreational activities in Groton.
  • Talk with CT DEEP to learn about safe boating and keeping our waters clean.
  • Learn about adaptive opportunities in small boats.
  • Kayak Waveologywill be showing high-end sea kayaks and giving demonstrations on Eskimo rolls and capsize recovery techniques.

To make your small boat(s) available for demonstration or use, contact Bill Grady at 860-271-1288. For more information please contact Groton Parks and Recreation at 860-536-5682.