2016 PTYC June Commodore Column: “Engines and Sounding Equipment are Secured and the Shark Watch is Set. Swim Call all Hands!”

16 June Com Col

Ahoy Fellow Cruisers!

It’s been a busy few months and we can finally leave the feverish pace in our wake.

Let’s talk about Opening Day. If the quality of this year’s Opening Day activities reflects this new boating season that it kicked off, I think we are in for an outstanding year on the water! The breakfast was well planned, well attended and all were well fed. The Parade was well planned and well executed ashore and afloat. Once again, we were blessed with good weather. It was good to see such good Club and Community participation. The comments from Port Townsend’s Mayor only confirm our conviction that Opening Day is a community event. The Clam Chowder feed at the end of the day was a perfect way to wind down and relax after the day’s activities. Opening Day, once again, illustrated what I think is PTYC’s most obvious character trait……….Fellowship! It is evident in everything we do and was evident throughout the day. I believe that it is what has attracted so many of our new members, including Kathy and me barely 4 years ago. To all involved, Well Done!As a Yacht Club, I thought you would be interested in a little maritime history. During the period of this edition, two of this nation’s seagoing organizations will celebrate anniversaries. The first is the U.S. Merchant Marine. We see these vessels all the time as everything from tugs and barges to containerships and tankers.

They are critical to foreign and domestic commerce. In wartime, the Merchant Marine can be called on to transport military personnel and material. World War II was a good example. Most of those merchant ships were slow and unarmed and as a percentage of the number of merchant mariners serving at the time, their wartime casualties were higher than any of the 4 armed services that existed at the time. It is challenging to pin down when the Merchant Marine began, but the first wartime role of an identifiable U.S. Merchant Marine occurred 241 years ago on June 12th 1775 when a group of mariners aboard an unarmed lumber schooner surprised and captured an armed British warship off the coast of Maine. The second is the U.S. Coast Guard, which was founded during the Washington administration 226 years ago on August 4th 1790 as the Revenue Marine. This was the brainchild of Alexander Hamilton.   The name changed to “Revenue Cutter Service” by 1860 and to “Coast Guard” in 1915. The Coast Guard is the smallest of the 5 Armed Services and its missions include Maritime Law Enforcement, Search and Rescue, Marine Safety, Ice Breaking, Boating Safety, Port Security, Aids to Navigation and Homeland Security. All of this is from an active duty force of about 40,000. The U.S. Merchant Marine and the U.S. Coast Guard are important parts of our maritime history.

“Watch the Quiet Ones!” As before, I like to periodically recognize members who work quietly to keep things running smoothly. I have two recognitions in this area. First, we hold monthly meetings and conduct other events in the clubhouse. The galley is always stocked and ready for the watch and the bar is always stocked and bartenders available for each event. The person who does this never seeks recognition for this good work, so let’s recognize the longstanding diligence of Mary Ann Verneuil. Second, in addition to an already full plate, this member willingly steps up to help others in need of assistance. This is all done quietly and with great result. Let’s recognize the strong sense of teamwork consistently displayed by our Vice Commodore, Duane Madinger. Mary Ann and Duane, your efforts are appreciated and have not gone un-noticed.

Finally, now that cruising season has “officially” started, the Pleasant Harbor Cruise in June and the Reid Harbor Cruise in July are next on the schedule. As always you can go online to see the cruise schedule and to sign up. As you cruise, please practice green cruising by doing what you can to minimize the amount of trash generated during a cruise. In the meantime, have a great summer and I hope to see you on the water!       Commodore Bruce Painter   

May “Moored” always be a temporary status