Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club Junior Sailing and Tennis Program

Tue, 08/06/2019 - 11:30am

As we wrap up another very busy week of the summer program, we want to start with a HUGE thanks to all the BHYC staff and volunteers who made this week possible. It was a huge amount of work to make sure that not just our kids, but kids from all over the Northeast had a great week of sailing, both racers and non-racers alike. 

Monday and Tuesday were great days to be out on the water, and we saw another group of older beginners lead by Tess in the afternoon as well a healthy group of intermediates in the afternoon, but it was really the end of the week that was exciting this time.

On Wednesday, we held our first of two scheduled Adventure Days for the season. Adventure Days are aimed at giving all kids (racers and non-racers) a chance to meet kids from other clubs, sail in and to new places, and further their skills. For this one, we had over 60 kids on the water as our program was joined by sailors from the University of New Hampshire, Taylor Pond Yacht Club, Mallets Bay Boat Club and Portland Yacht Club. Shoving off in a fleet that used nearly all our 420s and Techs as well as Anna Grace and two of our J-22s we set sail for Ram Island. After about a 2-hour sail, kids explored the shore, swam, played frisbee, noshed on burgers and dogs and just hung out before setting sail on the way home. Many sailors saw porpoises and seals, and some were lucky enough to see an ocean sunfish hanging out on the surface. Considering that two of the visiting programs sail on lakes, and the rarity of sunfish sighting, there was something for everyone to enjoy on the trip home.

Thursday and Friday would see 40 420s and 73 Optis out racing at the Maine State Opti and 420 Championships. Of those, BHYC sailors were five Opti Championship, six Opti Green and two 420 teams — for a total of 15 of our kids out participating. With Caleb, Payton and Chris out coaching, Kate joined the staff for a few days to help Claudia and Tess with normal programing back in the harbor for our morning and afternoon classes. 

Out on the race course, BHYC had much success. After leading for the first day, a couple of tough races left Arden Carleton in fifth overall in the Optis. Arden was 13th at this event last year and has shown tremendous growth in a year. While we never complain if our kids win, and we coach them to be as competitive as they would like, we really strive for growth and fun. Otto Schoenthal and Piper Carleton also improved several spots from their previous regattas, Toby Clarkson finished in 11th and showed much more constancy in from race to race, Caroline Snell had some great finishes in her first week back on the water, and Hollis Harding went from Green fleet last year to second in her age group (white fleet). Pippa Schoenthal, William Hennigar, Ava Pumo, and Selen Esra joined Charley Carleton to make up our green fleet.

On the 420 course, relative newcomers Bobby Clarkson and Kate Mason placed 23rd in the 40-boat fleet, inching closer to breaking the mid fleet line. First time teammates Cyrus Blake and Maren Whitney battled through some spinnaker problems and finished every race. We are excited to see what the future brings.

Back home, Claudia, Tess and Kate kept normal programs moving along with normal instruction on Thursday and lots of fun on Friday. Friday's morning sailors played man overboard, a game in which all sailors race to rescue as many men overboard (life jackets) as they can, learning about sail trim and upwind sailing while having fun. In the afternoon the team had devised a scavenger hunt that had kids exploring the harbor and learning a bit of history while improving their sailing and teamwork. 

The tennis players were also busy, as the BHYC tennis program competed at Christmas Cove on Tuesday. We brought 11 players over by boat and had close matches throughout the afternoon. Even though it was a hot afternoon on the courts, the boat ride was refreshing and the hamburgers and hotdogs to finish the day of tennis was perfect. 

In house, we had 15 players in the 10:30 Masters tennis group. A great group of kids and a lot of fun games to be had on the courts. We finished the week with our Friday tournament play. The Fay brothers (Isaac, Aaron, and Eiton) all finished in second place for their brackets! We look forward to another great week of tennis on the courts as we welcome both new and returning players.