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On The Bay: December 27, 2013

Oakcliff A Major Force

Still looking for that perfect gift? Not sure of what to give the sailor in your life and want to make it really special this year?

Well, your columnist has a suggestion that may be of help to you. There is something really special going on at Oakcliff Sailing Center in Oyster Bay. And since this is the season for giving, it’s a good time to let readers know about the magic that Dawn Riley, executive director, is weaving.

How, you might ask, has this to do with your holiday list. Simple—give your special sailor a gift of a donation to Oakcliff Sailing Center. Not only will you feel good that you are supporting the sport we all love so much, but the recipient of your gift will enjoy some fantastic benefits at Oakcliff. They really know how to thank their supporters. Read on...

A Sapling (young sailors who aspire to be professional sailboat racers) captured what Oakcliff is all about when he tried to explain Oakcliff to his friends and they were really skeptical. He kept trying and then basically said, really it is “Too good to be true.”

But true it is. This is a perfect tagline for Oakcliff. What Oakcliff has accomplished, under the leadership of Dawn Riley, is phenomenal. One has to wonder how their small staff can possibly manage to complete all the events, boat maintenance, seminars, educational programs that go on year after year.

And in 2014 they will be building housing for their students. In the few short years since their inception, Oakcliff Sailing Center has changed the face of Oyster Bay, sailing and racing on Long Island Sound, the U.S. and beyond.

For example, in 2013 Oakcliff became the first official US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider Training Center, expanded its fleet to include the world’s largest collection of Olympic class Nacra17s, 49ers, and 49er FXs, and hosted more match racing than any other sailing center in the country.

Oakcliff also organized and hosted 19 regattas including the NACRA17/49er/49erFX US National Championship and the Oakcliff International, celebrated 13 podium finishes for our Offshore Teams, sent competitors to Grand Prix events including the Mini Transat, Red Bull Youth America’s Cup, Grand Slam Match Race Series, and Farr 40 Worlds. And that was just for 2013.

In 2014, Oakcliff will be doubling its training programs. For the first time, it is adding an Adult Acorn program where adults can see how they stack up against the young pros. They will also offer a high performance dinghy camp aboard 24 brand new Olympic class skiffs and multihulls. To that end it will be building more housing.

Comments from students and supporters capture what Oakcliff is about: “I learned such an incredible amount of information, ranging from Marlow ropes to knot tying skills to splicing to meal planning to sail repair to navigation to safety at sea to match racing logistics to a taste of what it’s like offshore and to most importantly, how a team works,” said Oliver Shenberg, Acorn Grad.

“Match racing at Oakcliff is like cross-training for sailors. I sharpen my fleet racing skills and keep my crew on their toes,” said Craig Albrecht, Avalanche, Oakcliff supporter.

Oakcliff thank their supporters. Supporters are invited to race and train at the sailing center alongside with the Acorns and Saplings, the very people that donations support. Other benefits: Match racing: compete at the worlds’ most active Match Racing Center. Classic Racing: sail elegant works of art in scenic Oyster Bay. Rockstar Seminars: Rub shoulders with and sail with the world’s best. Coached Fleet Racing: Race offshore and inshore with real-time coaching and race management: Become a US Sailing certified race-officer, judge or umpire.

For information about donating to Oakcliff Sailing Center, http://www.oakcliffsailing.org/support-us. If you would prefer to customize your gift, call Oakcliff at 516-802-0368 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it changes lives and advances our sport.

News

Tundra, the arctic snowy owl, fixed her golden eyes upon me, clucked her beak, then turned her head, ready for her close-up. Two months earlier she was near death at LaGuardia Airport, emaciated with a broken wing, but was saved by a dedicated group of people called Volunteers for Wildlife. The organization located at Bailey Arboretum in Lattingtown houses not only the rehabilitation hospital for wildlife but has aviaries where the public can see the rescued birds.

Earlier this month at the Seawanhaka Yacht Club, 160 people arrived for the organization’s fundraising gala.

Movie lovers once again have a chance to see first-run films in the theater without having to travel far. Glen Cove Cinemas re-opened last week, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and free films offered to celebrate the occasion.

“Thanks to all of the support we have here and all of you, Glen Cove is once again open for business,” said Mayor Reginald Spinello at the ceremony, held outside the theater on Thursday, April 10. “This is going to be so good for Glen Cove and the surrounding communities.”


Sports

Muttontown resident and Kellenberg freshman Ceara Ann Conroy has been named an All-League athlete for Girls Winter Track. The title of All-League is awarded to athletes based on a vote of all the coaches in the NSCHSAA League. All of the Girls Winter Track coaches in the league vote based on the athletes performance during the season, and Conroy’s outstanding performance has earned her the title of All League this year.

The Girls Varsity Lacrosse program at Oyster Bay High School is just in its second year and already it is making a difference. Senior defender Danielle Maggi has committed to play Division III lacrosse at Albright College.

Last year Maggi was recognized as the “Most Improved Player,” and this year she is being recruited to play in college.

Maggi said, “We did very well in our first varsity season last year (12-2). This year we are 100 percent going for the conference. I’m excited we finally have a varsity team.”


Calendar

Women Minding Their Own Business

Thursday, April 24

Dance Concert

Friday, April 25

Harbor and Beach Cleanup

Saturday, April 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com