From the Commodore...
This past weekend I had the pleasure of competing in what I hope will grow to be our Yacht Racing Association’s (YRA) signature event. Eighteen teams met in Charleston to decide which Club has the best sailors. Patterned after the Resolute Cup which the New York Yacht Club hosted this past weekend (an international Club competition), the SAYRA Club Championship has really taken on legs.
Seventeen teams actually made it to the water for a regatta that Charleston Community Sailing won, led by Amy Woodard, Katie Johnson, Wendy McKenzie and Mary Corbett. Congratulations to this awesome team! As the father of two sailing daughters and the husband of a race officer, it makes me super proud to see a female team take top honors.
Speaking of SAYRA signatures, the Helen Hanley Memorial Fund continues to support sailors young and old in their pursuit of national honors. One of the topics of post race conversation was the purpose of the HHMF, which now has over $300,000 in it. Here’s a link to the history of the HHMF and what it is allowed to fund. Take a moment to read it, because it is interesting and informative. CLICK HERE
From time to time I’m asked why the HHMF can’t give out more money. Helen Hanley wanted this fund to be one that would endure and spoke to that in her will. SAYRA has adopted spending guidelines that are designed to allow the fund to be a perpetual fund - that is one that will grow versus inflation and be able to provide for sailors long into the future. It means that we can’t spend say $100,000 on a fleet of boats for SAYRA or fund a costly new project, as worthy as those ideas may be. If we took on several major projects, the fund quickly would be gone. It does however, mean that for the foreseeable future, we can help fund sailors’ sailors dreams of competing on a national level and US Sailing Training certifications, which ultimately enhances the health of sailing in our area.
So - Clubs - start making your plans now for the 2020 SAYRA Club Championship. It will be a good one! One last note, Save the Date for the 2020 Annual SAYRA Conference and if you could take a moment to complete a 2 question survey, CLICK HERE
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Robert Key, Commodore