sunfish adventure raid [June 2-3, 2018]

Laser Performance is sponsoring a 2-day sailing event on the lower Connecticut River near Hartford this summer.

Rig your Sunfish or any boat that can be beached (daggerboard/centerboard), pack your sleeping bags, and grab a friend!! After hearing from the sailors, ISCO has revived the Sunfish Adventure Classic and, transformed it into an annual roaming event for the Sunfish fleet to take any shore. To be known as the Sunfish Adventure Raid, ISCO is proud to host its first regatta. Join us for a two-day fun race following the lower Connecticut River from the industrial banks of Hartford, past meadowlands and wetlands, meandering past eighteenth-century seaports, to finish at tree-covered Essex. Up to two people sail per boat, carrying on board the necessary camping gear (tents, sleeping bags), life jackets, clothing and foul-weather gear, lunch and drinks for two days. LaserPerformance provides the food, drink, and staff for the Saturday night cookout and a complete breakfast Sunday, as well as a post race party! Register for two days of family fun and adventure!

sign up/registration information can be found here.  additional details can be found at LP’s Facebook page for the event.

this event has been held annually for the last several years, but had been mainly initiated and organized by just a few Sunfish enthusiasts.  it’s nice to see Laser Performance sponsoring the race this year, and hopefully they will continue that sponsorship for future years.

historically, the Connecticut River race was a huge Sunfish event, with even reference to it in the Sports Illustrated article “Here She is, the True Love Boat“:

Enthusiasts have been known to enjoy offshore cruising in, and overnight camping from, Sunfish, and have used them on river trips. Every May a fleet of about 100 of the little boats participates in a three-day race down the Connecticut River from Hartford to Essex.

I’m not sure that any of the recent events have come close to that many participants, but perhaps with LP acting as a sponsor, it will help create more interest in getting this back as a Sunfish tradition.

 

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bow-shackle pen by Oceanus Brass

for those looking for a something with a nautical theme for the sailor in your life, this may be a perfect new gift idea.  it is the bow-shackle pen from Oceanus Brass.  soft polished brash, clean lines, with a small brass bow shackle attached to the top of the pen.  brass is always a common theme with nautical gifts, and while a nice compass and sextant set looks nice on an office desk, they are usually not very practical.

the pen is a conversation starter for sure: I had tucked into my shirt pocket the other day, and everyone who saw it asked about it. the pen has a nice heft to it, and is comfortable in your hand as you write with it.  the length of the pen is probably a tad too short for the size of my hands for any amount of long-term writing, but is perfectly functional for writing a quick note, or penning a card to a loved one.

the craftsmanship of the pen is quite stunning – there are two joints in the pen that are almost imperceptible.  smooth threaded joints allow you to spin off the upper part of the pen to reveal the pen tip for writing, and the 2nd threaded joint unscrews to allow you to change the pen ink refill.

the pen certainly bucks the trend these days to have everything disposable, made from cheap plastics that can be used briefly and then easily discarded.  at $100, it certainly isn’t in the price range of a box of cheap Bic ball point pens, but it’s a bargain compared to a Montblanc.  the solid brass construction is nearly indestructible, so for the cost of pen ink refill every couple of years, this pen will likely last forever.  Oceanus Brass currently has a kickstarter campaign to help fund a re-tool to their pen design to now include a Fisher Space cartridge, details here: Bow-Shackle Pen + Fisher Space Cartridge.  if you support the current kickstarter by Oceanus Brass, you can get one of the new pens for a nice discount.

you can also purchase a Bow-Shackle pen or other nautical inspired gifts (lots of brass!) from their website.  you can follow Oceanus Brass on Twitter and Instagram.

full disclosure: I received this pen as a gift in exchange for writing an unbiased review.

old school hiking out

sail it flat.

h/t: @tackandcross on Instagram

the life aquatic “10 April 2015”

three years later, and I still just love this miniature painting by South African artist Lorraine Loots (@lorraineloots ) of Bill Murray’s character from the Wes Anderson film “The Life Acquatic”.

Lorraine Loots – Bill Murray as Steve Zissou in Wes Anderson’s “The Life Aquatic”. 29 x 20 mm (2015)

h/t: paintings for ants at art news blog and the tumblr archive

you can purchase art from Lorraine Loots at her website: http://lorraineloots.com/

AMF: we make weekends

this is a silly little cartoon advertisement from the 1970’s(?) – where AMF makes claim to “making weekends”.

AMF was one of the earlier builders of the Sunfish sailboat, buying out Alcort in 1969, and building the Sunfish, Minifish, Super Sunfish and a few other small sailboats until 1985.

HT: saw this posted at the Sunfish Forum.

Easter greetings

it is April 1st, and Easter, and of course there are snow flurries coming down because we live in Michigan. we are spending the weekend with my family – a time for food, fellowship, fun, and then some more food!

hopefully spring gets here quickly, because I’d love to be sailing soon.

image h/t: @CFAScot

greater Detroit 2018 Sunfish race schedule

the Greater Detroit Sunfish Club (GDSC) has released their 2018 Sunfish race schedule (you can find it with additional information posted at their Yahoo Group).  you can also check them out on their Facebook page.

  • May 20th – Watkins Lake
  • June 3rd – Watkins Lake
  • June 9th & 10th – Gull Lake Sunfish Open Regatta (details & NOR TBD)
  • June 23rd & 24th – camping weekend at Muskegon Lake (Muskegon State Park)
  • July 29th – U.P. Island Race (Les Cheneaux YC… details t.b.d.)
  • early August – Sunfish Youth North American Championships & Sunfish North American Championships (Lake Bluff, IL)
  • September 1st & 2nd – camping weekend at Higgins Lake (South State Park)
  • September 15th & 16th – Devils Lake Regatta (Bruce Goldsmith Memorial – details & NOR TBD)
  • September 30th – Watkins Lake

all Sunday races start at 12:30pm [uno], with the camping/racing weekends starting earlier in the day to get extra races in over the weekend.

I said this last year (and the year before… and the year before… and the year before), and didn’t get a chance to sail with this group, but I’m again going to do my best to meet up with them for some sailing races this year.


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