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Spring is here and the activity at boatyards is at its peak. Sound of scraping, sanding, as well as sailors gathering to give and receive advise on preparing their boats for another sailing season, can be heard around the bay. Some boats have already made it to their moorings, but the many masts seen in local boatyards indicate that many sailors have to wait a bit more to take that first wonderful sail on Manhasset Bay. A few boats are launched and were out on our bay for weekend racing and over at American YC for their Spring Series. According to Knickerbocker YC, which was Race Committee this past weekend, there were two races on Saturday, May 1 for the Sonar Fleet. The winners for both races: 1. Weekend Warrior, Dan and Bill Simon, and 2. Housemartin, Beth and Greg Danilek. Race results for Sunday were unavailable. American YC hosted their annual Spring Series on April 24-25 and May 1-2. Two teams from our bay competed: Sandy Lindenbaum (Knickerbocker YC) on Promise Kept, came in first in his division, PHRF4A. Paul Strauch (Manhasset Bay YC) on Andiamo, came in 12th in the J105 division. Charlie V, out of Sea Cliff YC, came in 3rd in the J44 Class 5 division.

The Women's Racing Clinic (WRC) held its first meeting of the season at the Knickerbocker YC on Tuesday April 27 to discuss basic racing rules. Sue Miller and Stephanie Baas spoke to the group about racing rules when boats meet, such as avoiding contact and acquiring right of way. It was made clear that a port tack at the starting line is not a very good idea, to the consternation of one particular skipper! At the next meeting, our two informative leaders will discuss the rules pertaining to mark roundings in preparation racing each Wednesday evening. While most of the members of the WRC do not match race, the upcoming event may appeal to those more experienced WRC teams. The 2004 U.S. Women's Match Racing Championship Notice of Race and Request for Invitation is now available. This is an ISAF Grade 3 event which will be hosted by the New York YC at Harbor Court in Newport, RI, from September 30-October 3. The winning team will take home US Sailing's Allegra Knapp Mertz Trophy. For more information, go to http://www.ussailing.org

On Wednesday May 26, Rich du Moulin will present "Racing a Ghost Ship," at the Knickerbocker YC. Mr. du Moulin will recount his voyage on Great American II as she sailed south through the South China Sea (past Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia), through the Sunda Strait to the Indian Ocean, around the Cape of Good Hope and into the south Atlantic catching the SE trades near Equator, working the doldrums north of the Equator, and onto the North Atlantic, past Bermuda, across the turbulent Gulf Stream and into New York Harbor. Along the way, du Moulin gathered a life time worth of experiences, which he will share with the audience. This is one presentation readers won't want to miss. Open to the public, with a $10 entrance fee. Juniors are free. Proceeds will benefit the Knickerbocker Cup as well as SitesAlive. 8 p.m., at Knickerbocker YC, 433 Main Street (883-7655)

Don't forget to watch the ESPN Classic "25 Years of Sailing" on May 19 at 9 p.m. This one-hour program is hosted by Gary Jobson and will examine how the sport of sailing has changed with dramatic technological advances, many larger-than-life personalities, historic races and shifts in power. Watch how the America's Cup has changed hands, from the United States, to Australia, to New Zealand, and now to Switzerland. This program should prove to be very interesting to the casual sailor and the experienced racer alike.

An elegant auction of marine art -- some by local artists and some by other artists throughout New England -- has been scheduled for Sunday, May 23, at the Stamford Yacht Club. Artworks to be auctioned will include watercolor and oil paintings, photography, and museum-quality prints. The auction, which is open to the public, will begin with a reception and preview exhibition at 4 p.m. The professionally managed auction, organized in cooperation with the Stamford Art Association, will begin at 6 p.m. Proceeds of the auction will benefit the Stamford Sailing Foundation (SSF). The SSF, a 501(c)(3) educational organization, aims to enrich the lives and to broaden the horizons of at-risk youngsters in Stamford, through after-school programs in sailing, seamanship, and water safety. In the past seven years, approximately 400 Stamford youths have participated in these programs, all of which are funded by activities such as the Art Auction and individual contributions from supporters. Artists are invited to submit their works for consideration by the Auction Steering Committee. The Committee also welcomes outright gifts, to the Foundation, of auction items from private collections; such gifts are tax-deductible. For more information about the Art Auction or the Foundation, please contact Harry White (hewhite3@ix.netcom.com), Don Axelrod (da115@aol.com), or Bernie Weiss (bw@pro-pub.com).

Other upcoming events: May 19 (repeat on May 28): New Sailors Clinic, a two-hour introduction to sailing at Offshore Sailing School. 800-221-4326, www.offshore-sailng.com. May 28: 59th Block Island Race, sponsored by the Storm Trysail Club (www.stormtrysail.org) and the Stamford YC (www.stamfodyc.com) June 1: BoatSmart Course, Oyster Bay Power and Sail Squadron, 7 p.m. at the Water Front Center, One West End Avenue. Call Ron Ferina (516-935-0475).


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