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In this Issue:

  • LAST CHANCE to Submit your Survey Responses
  • OKTOBERFEST  F@5 this week Oct. 10
  • HALLOWEEN Party - at Bewitching Blue Moon F@5, Oct. 29
  • Club Scrub Update -  Booty is yours for the taking!
  • Volunteer Awards presented at Induction Ceremony
  • New SAILING BOOK CLUB meets this Wed. Oct 13
  • MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL every week - Burgers, Bratwursts & Beer
  • Carol Snowball is this week's Incognito Club Hero
  • Putting on the Ritz--The Commodore's Ball, Nov 13
  • A Brief History of the BYC by PC Joe Coons

Scroll down for the complete articles.

We have received some amazing Survey data! The response rate has been great!

Let Your Voice be HEARD! Submit your Survey Response TODAY!!!

This survey, like your BYC Town Hall meeting, is yet another way that the Club is gathering information about what you want from your Club.  The feedback gathered from the Surveys and Town Hall meetings will influence the management of the Club and the Board's decisions.  

Each individual of the BYC membership over the age of eight years is invited to respond to the survey. 

Let YOUR ideas and opinions be known.  We need "squeaky wheels" to show us where to apply the oil. 

If you have any questions about submitting your survey, please do not hesitate to contact Don or Mary Jorgensen, MSC Survey sub-committee Co-Chairs, at   or contact any member of the Marketing Steering Committee; Kathy Brown, Chair.

Just make sure that you submit your responses TODAY! 

For your convenience here is the link, again:

Thanks!   --- Don Jorgensen, Co-Chair of the Survey Sub-committee and Your BYC Marketing Steering Committee

Oompah!  Celebrate Ockterfest at this week's F@5, October 15th

Bring your biersteins!  Wear your Lederhosen and Dirdnels!
Bring those favorite German foods, appetizers and cakes! 

It's Oktoberfest at the BYC!  --Steve Moore
Here is the link to his colorful flyer:

It is a Bewitching Blue Moon F@5, Oct 29th.  BYC celebrates Halloween

Halloween at the BYC is great fun--the Club is spookily decorated, the Members are in costume, and tricks and treats abound!  The Bar offers witches' brew and warlocks' draughts. 

Our lovely, good Witch of the West, Judy Griffen is heading up this event.  Please contact her to volunteer on the Halloween Social Committee at:
and she will let you know about the planning meeting.

Thanks for heading up this committee, Judy! Volunteers like you are why this Club has so much Fun!  --PC Steve Moore


This past club scrub (very well organized by John VanHaalen) wasa success in organization for the bar/buffet/pantry team.

In addition to organizing and stocking, we were alsopurging some of the huge quantity of items that are no longer in use.
Right now there is a table in the Jr. area (pool table area) that has boxes upon boxes of unused glassware.

We will be leaving these items that are free for the taking by any BYC member until the 22nd of October - anything still left after that time will
be donated to charity, on behalf of the BYC.

If you're in need of some extra wine glasses for your home or boat, plastic champagne glasses for those rough-sea events, or other items please stop by and take what you need. --- Sally Poorman, Bar/Buffet/Pantry Club Scrub Team

Volunteers receive awards at the Installation of the Officers Ceremony

Commodore Pete Foti presented the following awards before the Changing of the Guard and the Installation of New Officers and Board Members Ceremony:

Boating Family of the Year was awarded to the Crawford Family of the MnN. 

The Reset Award was presented to PC Ray Poorman for his tireless work on the keeping the Club's computer/Internet/cashier/on-line guru who keeps our systems up and going.

Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to PC Terry Tavelli for his volunteer time and effort that he devoted to the Club's remodeling project.

And finally, but not least, Commodore Foti founded a new award that he dubbed "The Volunteer of the DECADE." This award was presented to PC Dick Johnson for his countless hours of volunteerism to the BYC, particularly for managing and running  the Lounge for the past decade of 2001-2010.

--Reported by your Jib Sheet editor, Kathy Brown

First Meeting of the new Sailing Book Club will take place this Wed, Oct. 13th from 7 until 9 p.m.

No Boating or Sailboat Racing experience required!  The BYC Sailing Fleet Book Club is open to all, from youth sailors, to new sailors, to advanced racers and anyone who has an interest in learning and discussing books on Sailboat Racing.

There is no cost for this event. To register, send your name, phone # and e-mail address to Jon Knowles, call 360-303-5465.

This week's Jib Sheet Volunteer of the Week is Carol Snowball.

Carol Snowball was selected for this award  because of her year-round  diligence in creating and maintaining our Club's landscaping and beautiful potted gardens. 
Thank you, Carol for making our grounds, entrance way and back deck such lovely places. 

If you know of someone who is an incognito volunteer hero for the BYC, please submit his or her name to the Jib Sheet editors along with why you are submitting it.
We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Your Jib Sheet editors,  Joe Coons, Jim Langei and Kathy Brown

PC Joe Coons did a wonderful job as emcee for our Installation of New Officers and Board Members Ceremony that took place last Wednesday evening.  Joe's commentary made for a heartwarming, memorable evening.  As part of the evening's program, he presented a gentle education of the 85 years of Club service and volunteerism that has made the Club what it is today. 

For those Members who could not attend the Ceremony, here is a transcription of Joe's speech which is a reflection on "How we got here."   --JibSheet editor, Kathy Brown

Here we are, once again, for the Induction of New Leadership for this great old Club! 
I’m asking you to reflect for five minutes on How we got here.  It wasn’t easy!  I want to remind you of our history, and the continuum of traditions and activities and service to the Club by its Members that got us to this point.
Retiring Commodore Pete Foti is the 86th in our history, and his fellow officers and Trustees are in the ranks of over a thousand key Members who for generations have kept this Club intact and serving boating and its members since 1925.  It hasn’t always been easy…in fact, it’s generally always been hard. 
Past trustees will affirm: The business of the Club takes careful thought and serious commitment. 
And any Past Commodore can tell you:  “Going through the Chairs” was one of the most satisfying things of their lives…and one of the jobs they undertook that took way, way more time, treasure, and effort than they ever imagined it could.  There were times when, but for our love for the Club, we could have easily walked away…in fact, a few officers over the years actually got very scarce during the later months of their terms, the victims of stress, personal problems, or financial setbacks that made Club service just too much of a burden. 
This induction is, therefore, an auspicious occasion that deserves some reflection, and that’s why these ceremonies are hosted by the Blue Gavel organization of Past Commodores.  We know what the past, present and future leaders face, for we have all been there!
How has this Club succeeded?  How have we worked so hard, through thick and thin, over 85 years, to keep the 1925 dream of a few water-loving guys with a half dozen boats and space on a log boom on Chuckanut Bay alive? 
Maybe it was propitious that we were first created on Valentine’s Day, 1925:  We all love our Bay, Boats, and this wonderful place here in Bellingham.
It hasn’t been easy for this Club some years. During World War II times were tough for us, there was little boating…our Members were busy working for peace or away in service to the nation, and had little time for pleasure. 
And then there were those awful, bleak, bleak years, in the recent 1990’s, when we seriously … seriously… considered even closing the Club and selling our building, and we were struggling to stay solvent.  We were in debt and --- in nautical terms --- sinking fast. 
Yes, some years, our leaders bailed like crazy to keep us afloat.
But there have been the great years!  Years when we rode on waves of growth, excitement, service, and fun!  We grew from a dinghy dock and buoys on Chuckanut Bay to a log boom, then a shack, then a real Clubhouse on Cornwall, symbolically in part above the water on pilings.  The picture of that space, now a restaurant in LaConner, hangs on our wall.  Those were prosperous years, and from the thirties until the fifties, our success to a considerable extent was due to the tone of the times, with lots of alcohol at events and profitable slot machines keeping the tills full. 
Then, once again, in 1960, our leaders had to adapt.  The slots were gone.  Income was falling.  So we moved here to Squalicum Harbor, built a grand building, became a great place to eat, and soon had over 2,000 Members!  There was a waitlist to get in.  For a time, until the mid 1980’s, this place thrived…mainly --- frankly --- because it had become a good restaurant.  Many members didn’t care about boating particularly; they just wanted to eat and drink and dance.  Although we had no “social member” category, that’s what most of us were back then.
Then, along came change again. 
The moms in the nation’s families went to work, and didn’t have so much time to wait on their husbands. 
Family activities for the kids meant that dads weren’t hanging around bars so much, and the Highway Patrol and Mothers Against Drunk Driving changed this nation’s recreation habits.  We stopped making most of our money with alcohol service…the State now allowed liquor by the drink! Folks could go a any old tavern, the Club had no special privileges as a bar…
In the late ‘80’s, responding yet again to changing times, our BYC leaders turned the helm again, with emphasis on that old, 1925 idea:  Emphasize boating and love of the water, not just food and drink, as the reason for this Club’s existence.  Under the pressure of losses that in one year totaled over $100,000, Commodores and Boards struggled just to keep the business afloat.  In just five years, dues went from about $100 to $360, a huge increase.  Members disappeared in droves.  In 1986, there were 2150; in 1993, 1000; by 1998, around 350.  We had decreased in size by eighty-five percent!
We struggled for years.  Then, beginning in the late 1990’s with men --- and beginning in 2001, with women --- pulling together and carefully turning our helm, we began getting stronger and stronger again. 
Big changes began when we got out of the food business. Our first dining room lease was in 1995, and it took five different restaurant lessees over the thirteen years before our present lease with Tom and Barbara Kilpatrick and the Hilltop began.  One of those lessees went bankrupt leaving us with big losses (we called them “the boys”).  Four lessees tried and then sold out at a loss, including our Member Kim Alfreds, but Kim made terrific improvements to our dining spaces during those years when our Club was his unintended charity. And through all those negotiations and all this turnover, it was Past Commodore Steve Moore we turned to, to help us deal with those tenants.  He is an unsung BYC hero --- most think of him only regarding emails --- and he is an example of the many times when the Club has sensibly recruited experts from our membership to help us make good decisions.  Our experience with Steve is a good example of using professional Members to counsel us.  His arrangements on our behalf got better each time. 
A huge change came during Chuck McCord’s term, 1998-1999: We became all-volunteer.  We went from losing money and having as many as 80 employees to earning modest returns with none.  Gradually, we pulled back from the riptides and rocks of failure as we adapted to the new world we found ourselves in.  For example, a big program improvement was suggested and implemented first by Commodore Steve Ross, and it was called, “Fridays at Five”. 
We kept seriously analyzing what we could do well and what irrelevancies we should abandon.  We carefully crafted budgets that we could adhere to.  We completely revised our accounting, and in the process tightened controls and eliminated wasteful expenditures.  We got bids for many services instead of just placing orders.  We got serious about reciprocity, helped to do it by a retired Seattle bus driver called Captain Homie.  He shared with us how much fun operating a boat “on the cheap” could be, and he nurtured our reciprocal relationships with other clubs all over the Northwest.  In 2001, we once again got a liquor license and Past Commodore Dick Johnson began an unmatched record of service, donating nearly two thousand hours a year to his post as volunteer bar manager.  This time there were volunteers doing the serving.  It’s easy to keep costs down if you don’t pay wages!
It all began to pay off, slowly, steadily, until we got where we are today, revitalized, financially strong, serving our boating and membership sub-communities with so many efforts.
Paraphrasing Winston Churchill, it was long, and hard, and our leaders never withdrew from the tasks at hand, and this perseverance continues.
It is the fine people here in this room, and those who came before all of us, who have brought us here.  We owe every one of them a debt…it is one that we can only repay by giving this Club our continued support.
Now, October 6, 2010, in our 86th year, we are here to induct our newest leadership team, and to honor those folks who are turning over our helm to new leaders.  In this year we have accomplished so many things: the remodeling, the growth of Youth Sailing, our financial stability, and so many more achievements.  The list is long. 
So, WELCOME!  Welcome to our 2010 Bellingham Yacht Club’s Induction of Officers, and join us as we celebrate a truly banner year in this Club’s development.
I’ve been thinking about Pete Foti, and how he and his Board and our wonderful Club Volunteers accomplished so much since this time last year.
It’s interesting, but everyone seems to like this guy.  For nearly all of us, when we think of Pete, we smile!  He’s so damn cheerful!  With his gleaming head and a twinkle in his eye, he seems to have time for everyone, doesn’t he?
Now, I am by no means easy to work with!  I’m impetuous, impulsive, ready to go with any late idea.  I drive Commodores nuts!  Is that right, Past Commodores?  But no matter how I bulldozed some opinions, Pete has always been unflappable.  He gives me a wry smile, and seems to say, “Coons, I know you mean well, but just keep cool for a while and we’ll reach a good decision.”
Some BYC Members mistake this for it being easy to get Pete to say “Yes”, to have him agree with everyone.  It isn’t.  It’s his way of keeping Club progress steady, and priorities on target.
As I’ve thought about Pete, I’ve realized something else, and this is important:  He’s “clique-less”.  He smiles with everyone he engages.  He seems to like every one!  He has no one special group; we are all his special group!
But you know, he’s a great businessman, growing his firm with Jamie from a modest little outboard-repair shop into one of the largest dealers for Honda Marine on the West Coast…and they’ve done it right.  He and Jamie don’t succeed because of big ads or deep-discount sales, they do it by hard work, caring for their customers, honestly and with quality.  I can tell you for a fact: West Coast Marine Service is one of the industry’s most respected vendors.
I’m saying all this about Pete because he’s served us so well, and so steadily, and with so little self-aggrandizement, that it’s easy to forget he was in charge! 
Please join me now by standing and showing your appreciation for our retiring Commodore, Pete Foti, as we invite him to say a few words and make a few awards.

THE Big Social Event of the Year---the annual Commodore's Ball

Save the Date!
Saturday evening, November 13th will be a night to remember with live music, dancing, dinner and divine desserts!  
And it will be the first Commodore's Ball Cocktail Hour to be held in our newly remodeled Lounge.  

Reach us all at  Suggestions, positive feedback and winning lottery tickets are always welcome.  Remember to submit your articles to  Deadline is Monday noon.

Fairwinds and Following Seas, your JibSheet editors:  Joe, Kathy and Jim

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