2011 Compass Rose Beach Events

Megrew’s Cup: June 11

This event is our annual Fleet 448 Championship and is sponsored by our local Hobie dealer, Megrew’s Boats of Charlestown, RI. It s a low-key race for catamaran sailors of all skills and abilities—no experience necessary! We will set up some marks just off the beach area at Compass Rose Beach and then run a series of 5-7 short races around the buoys—each lasting 30-35 minutes. Racing around the buoys is the best way to learn how to sail your boat as efficiently and effectively as possible. Sailboats cannot sail directly into the wind or directly downwind. By setting the course properly, with a mark positioned upwind followed by run to the downwind mark, you will need to tack (change direction) at least once or twice heading into the wind to go around the mark and then jibe (a downwind change of direction) one or more times to go around the downwind mark. Anyone can sail fast by following the wind. What is difficult is learning how to sail from point to point when the wind is coming from directly behind or in front of your boat. Racing a winward/leeward course will help you learn this, and following more experienced fleet members on the course makes it easier to learn. We encourage everyone to participate even if they don’t ever intend to race competitively. By learning how to sail your boat better, you will be a safer sailor and will be able to return to the beach or to the nearest point on land as quickly as possible should an unexpected storm, wind or weather event pop up while you are out on the water.

Fourth of July Commodore’s Fun Day: July 2-3

Our annual Fourth of July Party is an informal affair that includes a day of off-the-beach sailing followed by a large barbeque in the late afternoon. Since the holiday this year is on a Monday, we are making it a two-day happening—sail on Saturday or Sunday or both! We generally have 12-15 boats and 40-50 people, depending on the weather. Some come early, some come late, some stay all day.Most of the day is spent taking short sails—we switch off sailing with different people, and take newcomers, kids, family and friends out for quick rides—the view of the bay is refreshingly different from the water. Yes you do get wet on small catamarans and yes they can flip if you are determined to be the fastest sailboat on the bay—or if you just like sailing on the edge. Not a big deal though, since we always sail with other boats nearby, and we make sure all sailors how to right their boats—which is definitely a good thing to know. On shore we will have plenty of food for grilling all day, and games for kids and adult kids too! The main menu for this event always draws crowds, with past events including Teriyaki Steak, Ribs, Grilled Pork Loin, BBQ Chicken, Salads, Baked Beans and all the other fixin’s.

Around the Islands Sail/New England 100: August 13-14

We are planning a distance sail in the bay to be held in conjunction with the New England 100. The NE100 is a race geared to 18-20 foot catamarans with spinnakers. Over two days, these high-performance boats will sail a course that is approximately 100 miles long in Narragansett Bay and Rhode Island Sound. The course for the first day might include a run out to Block Island, or around Block Island and back by way of Newport Harbor. Then a course the following day might head up the bay, around Prudence and Patience Islands, or even around Aquidneck Island through the Sakonnet River—for something close to a total of 100 miles over the two-day race.Many of our 448 members have smaller cats—16 feet—without spinnakers, and are not interested in a formal racing event. So we will come up with a much shorter course around islands in the bay, depending on the wind, wave and tide conditions. We might have a longer sail around Jamestown that would take 4-5 hours on a smaller boat, or we might run a course that uses features in the bay—the pylons of the Jamestown Bridge, Dutch Island, Fox Island, or even just some channel markers to create a route that keeps us nearer to Quonset if the weather or wind is less accommodating. And it will be great fun to see the larger spinnaker boats take off in the morning and return in the late afternoon.Should the wind decline to co-operate, there are also options for fun races off or on the beach such as relay races, watermelon races, scavenger hunts, etc. to keep things interesting.