Commodore’s Message

Back to Basics

To say that the 2020 and 2021 seasons have posed challenges to our club would be an understatement. However, I am very proud of the way the club pulled together in 2020 to make the year as successful as possible, and I am confident that the same will happen in 2021.

In 2020 we found that some events could not be held (our Open Regatta, the Commodore’s Awards Night). Other events were delayed or held with slight modifications (Anniversary Cup, Sailpast Reception, Sail Week). And other events proceeded more or less as they always have (Thursday Night Racing, Saturday and Sunday Racing, the Thanksgiving weekend races, haul-out and Turkey dinner). Until the weather stopped co-operating around September, we had an excellent program of club racing. Sail Week was a smashing success. All in all there were excellent opportunities for racing, volunteering and socializing.

Despite the limitations imposed by Covid 19, I believe that 2021 will be bigger and better than 2020! In this Newsletter you will find our tentative schedule, and you will see that there is something fun to do at WSC every weekend, and many weekdays this summer, from June through to the Thanksgiving weekend. Your Executive has worked hard to develop club protocols which comply with Alberta Health directives, which protect our members, but which also allow us to enjoy our trailers, our club, our boats and our lake. The legal protocols have changed on a more or less weekly basis in the last few months. We are one of many institutions which are struggling to stay ahead of the most recent rules. We hope that you will bear with us, and stay tuned to WSC communications, because we expect that many of the restrictions currently in place will be relaxed in the near future.

It is true that racing and group sail training are currently prohibited at Lake Wabamun. What about the simple joy of sailing? There is nothing to prevent any of us from getting back to basics and going for a simple pleasure sail. Now is the time to fix up all those things around our club which need fixing. Now is the time for tinkering on our own boats, something I enjoy immensely (so much so that sometimes I cannot resist the temptation to tinker on other people’s boats). Now is the time to take our kids, wives, husbands and significant others for a pleasure sail.

In many ways, Covid 19 provides a tremendous opportunity for the sport of sailing. Other recreational activities in northern Alberta have boomed since the pandemic struck: downhill and cross-country skiing, golf, camping, hiking, cycling, paddling and canoeing, etc. What do these sports have in common? They are wholesome activities that people of many ages and physical abilities can enjoy. They take place in the great outdoors. They involve co-operation and fellowship. They allow people who have been cooped up for a long time to get out and get active while maintaining appropriate social distancing. This is a great time to grow our sport!

I thank all members for their anticipated assistance in making the 2021 sailing season at WSC as good as it can possibly be. I look forward to seeing you all at the club, and on the water.

Rick Stroppel

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