Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Laguna Madre Yacht Club Commodore's Ball -- 1/11/2014

Tonight is one of the highlights of my year, when we attend The Laguna Madre Yacht Club's annual Commodore's Ball, held at Isla Grande Beach Resort on South Padre Island.  We see special friends, meet new ones, listen to beautiful music, dance the night away, and enjoy a delicious feast. 

Arriving at 6P, we are greeted by Mike Myers of Sweet Pea and take our name tags.  A second look shows Cynde of Mark 4.1, who sends the eMail notifications of upcoming LMYC events.  It is our first time to meet her and we thank her for the service she performs, even though she doesn't live close enough to attend all socials.

What a delight to find a table with many albums and scrapbooks filled with photos and newspaper clippings telling of club activities in the past.  Mark shares with Herb some stories of his and Lettie's sailing on their Lancer 25, Barco de Marco.  

Beverages of our choice are 
available -- was Herb of Willie's Tug  first in line?  I think Bill has been served, and Marilyn H of Jet Boat is patient.

Instead of the set menu as in the past, this year we are treated to an endless buffet consisting of a variety of fruit, tossed and vegetable salads, carved roast beef au jus, boneless breast of chicken, Nappa Valley Pacific snapper almandine, fried shrimp roasted red potatoes, fresh baked breads and a variety of desserts.  

Could anyone go home hungry?  Comments I hear during the evening are that this is an awesome meal, and hope next year is a buffet, as well.

Many members attend and some bring guests, who are welcomed!

During the business session of the evening, Commodore Chris asks Judge Lynn to swear in the officers for the year 2014.

Music is provided by Keith DiSantis and his many musical instruments.  He delights us with oldies, some of which are "Danny Boy" and "King of the Road."

Guest speaker Wes Thom of Paper Dragon and local service expert whets our appetite and interest in the series of races planned the Spring and Fall.  He mentions the offshore overnight May 17 race, in which he will be involved, and which will set sail for "K" Buoy (20 miles offshore and 36 miles from Port Isabel jetties.  Think of a triangle.)  It is the Texas A&M WX buoy.  Rules are to round it, leave to starboard possibly, and head back home a little after sunrise, so as to cast off and return during the daytime.

Wes selected this time on the full moon, but if WX is bad, the race will be cancelled.

There is a possibility for fast boats to return before sunrise, and it has been suggested to ask Rick to take his TowBoat US to lead them safely through the jetties using range markers.

Hmmm.... sailing all night exciting!

The July 10 event is heading toward the oil rig, passing "K" Buoy, and on to "Hoover Diana," which pumps oil and gas to Louisiana.  Sitting in nearly 4800 feet of water, its anchor lines are seven miles long and begin at the bottom of the rig so as not to be in the way of vessels cruising close by.  Its tender is a 140 foot crew boat with 200 people on board.

Racing contestants are required to furnish proof with a photo of part of their boat with part of the rig showing in the background.  They will return to Port Isabel after the 140 mile cruise of three days -- two nights and three days offshore.  

They must prepare to cook and feed their crew.  The area is good fishing, and anyone who catches, cleans, and eats the fish gets a bonus off the handicap time.

In a recent race John Pinkerman of Sea Gal caught a fish.  Mark and Dee Fryer of Corps Trip  didn't try to fish, were in the lead in a bigger boat, but Pinkerman won due to the handicap.  Mark was on the edge of a squall and saw many turtles, which made it difficult to steer and not hit them.  Pinkerman was in the squall and saw only one turtle.  Wes says they all had a great time!

To make the racing more interesting, prizes will be given.  Miles of Yacht Lady will give a bottle of White Hat Rum to each participant.  Padre Rita Grill of South Padre Island will contribute a $100 gift certificate for dinner, and Pirates Landing in Port Isabel has two $50 gift certificates.

I must say these cruises sound so exciting and almost makes me want to crew on one!

Missing from our group tonight is Tommy Carruth, Life Member #1 and Founding Commodore.  We honor his memory and Herb presents a slide show of photos we have collected, with background music of "Sail on, Sailor" by Jimmy Buffett.

Our hearts wave back to Tommy.

Willie of Willie's Tug,
   and of Walldog, Willie and Jake
   Saturday, January 11, 2014


  1. Very nice we just had our change of watch gala. Gerry is not the Vice Commodore and next year he will be the big cheese!

  2. Congratulations to Gerry -- what a responsibility! I know he will do a good job. We plan to come out in March, but are missing the Seattle Boat Show -- boo hoo!