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One Week till the Annual Meeting, Lunch and Swap Meet


We are one week out from our annual meeting next Saturday.  In this sport we are constantly waiting on last minute condition changes before committing.  Well this one is locked in so no excuses for not committing NOW!

Saturday October 25th – Knights of Columbus Hall, 17 Willow Street, Westborough, MA 01581 Directions

Before you come think about what you might bring to the table besides an appetite for the now infamous Swedish meatballs.

The club needs:

  • Photographers (in addition to Bill Converse who has carried this load for years) Take off your gloves and snap a few from your smart phone.
  • Website/newsletter article contributions believe it or not want to read about anything on the subject of ice boats..  No web knowledge needed just an email address and for the right article I will pick it up even if written in crayon.
  • Ice scouts we won’t have a season without your help – special attention needed for the upcoming Gold Cup
  • Email me with what your willing to do and we can discuss next Saturday

This year we will be giving away valuable prizes at the meeting.  So this is not the year to skip.

Renew your membership and come to the annual meeting, swap meet and lunch.   Just a couple clicks away.

Description Price
2015 Membership and Lunch * $50
2015 Membership for one and Lunch for two * $70
2015 Membership * $30
Lunch Only $20
* As a condition for membership I have read, understand and agree to the NEIYA liability waiver as passed in the 2014 by-law amendment.

Annual Meeting Agenda

Saturday October 25th

Knights of Columbus Hall, 17 Willow Street, Westborough, MA 01581 Directions

9am to 11:30am – Swap Meet

If you have anything to sell please
list it in the classified section communicate with interested parties and bring it to the Swap Meet.
Listings and swap meet space are free for NEIYA members in good standing.

12:00 – 1:00 – Buffet lunch in the K of C hall, followed by the annual meeting.  Once again we have ordered extra servings of Swedish meatballs.  A perennial favorite.

1:00 – 2:30 – Annual Meeting

2:30 – ? – Round two (because people tend to hang anyway it’s now official) Swap and parting lot activities

Please register today our treasurer and the caterer will be much happier.  Looking forward

Think big, fast and safe ice!

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary

P.S. Please don’t put it off pay pay your dues and for lunch if you are attending today!

Saturday October 25th Annual Meeting, Lunch and Swap Meet


It’s that time of year again. Post Labor Day, Baseball playoffs, football is in full swing, it’s getting colder and of course the NEIYA annual meeting, Swap Meet and Luncheon.

Renew your membership and come to the annual meeting, swap meet and lunch.   Just a couple clicks away.


Description Price
2015 Membership and Lunch * $50
2015 Membership for one and Lunch for two * $70
2015 Membership * $30
Lunch Only $20
* As a condition for membership I have read, understand and agree to the NEIYA liability waiver as passed in the 2014 by-law amendment.


Annual Meeting Agenda

Saturday October 25th

Knights of Columbus Hall, 17 Willow Street, Westborough, MA 01581 Directions

9am to 11:30am – Swap Meet

If you have anything to sell please
list it in the classified section communicate with interested parties and bring it to the Swap Meet.
Listings and swap meet space are free for NEIYA members in good standing.

12:00 – 1:00 – Buffet lunch in the K of C hall, followed by the annual meeting.  Once again we have ordered extra servings of Swedish meatballs.  A perennial favorite.

1:00 – 2:30 – Annual Meeting

2:30 – ? – Round two (because people tend to hang anyway it’s now official) Swap and parting lot activities

Please register today our treasurer and the caterer will be much happier.  Looking forward
to seeing everybody again and prepare for the upcoming season.

Think big, fast and safe ice!

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary

Time to pull out and ready your gear


Steve Duhamel our local ice boat, equipment, and all things merchant sent in a few things to think about while the days are still long and the leaves are not down just yet.  Steve will be at the Swap Meet on October 25th with his trailer full of goodies.  He usually brings a ton of stuff reach out to him at North Wind Ice Boats before hand to be sure he brings what you need.  I can tell you from experience, it is a whole lot easier to buy a bob-stay or two from Steve before the season starts than going to Home Depot at 10:00 pm and fabricating one the night before you leaving for VT.  Even worse, finding out you need one while setting up.

2014 Swap Meet/Meeting
Saturday October 25th, 2013
PLACE: Same as last year Knights of Columbus Hall, 17 Willow Street, Westborough, MA 01581 Map
TIME: Swap Meet 9:00 am with Luncheon at 11:30 followed by the Annual Meeting with more swap time for the die hards

Steve, thanks for your your pre-season prep advice.  Take it away Steve…

Once again iceboat season is upon us, time to dust off the equipment and get ready for the upcoming season.  Now is the time while it is still warm to get all the gear out for inspection.

Simple Check List.

Pay attention to:

Hull to plank hardware, rougher ice at the end of the season adds additional stress to screws.  If loose but not damaged, remove and clean surfaces and add a few dabs of 3M5200 adhesive. Flexible enough to keep the hardware bonded to the hull or plank. Takes shock without fracturing like epoxy.

  • Check chock caps and bolts for tightness. Another area of high stress and for 3M5200 if loose re check alignment. Like epoxy, 3M 5200 parts can be removed with a little heat if necessary.
  • Check rigging for damage or frayed wires. If you see a black or discolored stand it most likely has a wire broken internally.
  • Check mast and hardware.  Hound and halyard hardware for wear and frayed wire.
  • Check sail batten pockets for wear and windows for cracks or holes as this material becomes brittle over time.  Also look for missing and broken battens. Tell tails do work if they are there. Are they gone, worn or frayed?
  • Check steering post, rod and chock for wear along with the bushings for play.
  • Look at hull side panels for cracks. These can easily be repaired before the get worse.
  • Clean and inspect blades.  Dull blades on black ice is dangerous to others as well as yourself.

If everything is in A1 shape than  how about going to the next level in detail! Find a comfortable place to work, flip the boat upside down, put on the plank, and remove the front chock and steering tube. Make a dowel bushing for the steering chock bushing and then attach a long thin scrap of wood and swing and ark from inner center hole of the plank chock from one side to the other. Is the plank on the boat straight? If not, you know what needs to be done. You will be faster for it.

Did you think to yourself, while you were sailing around last season,  I would like to change, modify, add, adjust this or that before I get the boat back on the ice next season. Boy wouldn’t a hiking rack, sheet line nose picking devise be nice? Basically anything you would do before the season arrives that makes things easier, nicer, and safer for a good ice boating experience. Spend a little time on the boat before you get to the ice, instead the projects I see going on in parking lots at the launch site. Now is the time to haul your gear out and give it a once over

Have a happy and safe ice boating season.

Steve Duhamel
North Wind Ice Boats
Phone: (781) 724-0648

Many Miles to the 2014 DN North Americans

From 2014 DN North American’s

This past season’s (2014) DN North Americans originally scheduled for Lake Senachwine near Peru, IL in the Western region ended up 1000+ miles away on Lake Champlain Plattsburg, NY. So goes the great sport of ice boating. It has been eleven years since the class put on a “big dance” (NA or Worlds) in the Eastern region. And what a dance it was, but im getting ahead of how we got there.

Before we hit the road in search of a championship regatta worthy plate, let’s take a look at what we’re looking for. A DN NAs or Worlds site requires a racing area of 1.25 -1.5 miles in all wind directions. This allows for a 1-1.25 mile course, with pits below the start line. Basically if you can fit a 1.5 mile circle on top of a good plate of ice you’re good to go.

New England primary sites include Sebago, and Moosehead Lake in Maine, Lake Winnipesaukee and Sunapee in New Hampshire and Lake Champlain as well as Memphremagog in Vermont. Of course we have plenty of other choices but size as well as local support facilities are both a factors.

Follow along with the relentless folks responsible for scouting the NA venue, Their tireless journey across seeking that perfectly frozen lake brings them 1000’s of miles.  Without their efforts, it would have never taken place.

For purposes of our timeline the first day of scheduled racing will be represented as R 0 and the beginning of our story takes place two weeks prior or R -14. Days designated with an R+1,2,3… represent the days after the (1st) original regatta start.

Eben Whitcomb and myself started the preliminary scouting, with a 750 mile RT drive to Lake Memphremagog and spent the day scouting ice and access locations both in the United States in Newport Vermont, and also several locations in Canada, near Owls head, and in the town of Magog.
Meanwhile in Vermont, Bob Schumacher Bob Dill, Don Brush and Paul Gervais were keeping an eye on Lake Champlain, and David Fortier and others were keeping an eye on Jordan Bay on Sebago Lake. Chad Atkins, who is the hotline coordinator for the NEIYA did a great job of keeping in touch with scouts on all the potential race sites throughout the whole scouting period.

On January 9 Steve Madden and David Fortier drove up to and sailed Sebago Lake on Jordan Bay. Based on their scouting Eben Whitcomb decided to call on the Eastern championships for Sebago Lake on January 11. The weather was expected to be fairly lousy, but he felt it was worth a shot at holding the regatta. Saturday morning when we got there it was raining and there was already a lot of water on the ice.

On Sebago after the favorable report Eben and I spent 4 hours pushing and sailing in light wind, and heavy rain, to further examine the plate of ice. Based on the amount of water on the ice we decided it was not likely that the Eastern’s could be held there and he postponed the event. That evening the lake received 1.5 inches more of rain.

Eben Whitcomb and I drove from Sebago Lake to Memphremegog (again) which was expected to get less rain. We spent Sunday kicksleding and skating near Newport Vermont. It was blowing about 30 miles an hour and we were unable to sail.(it was kind of scary going downwind on the kicksled!) We also identified a potential host hotel and gathering venue in the area.

Meanwhile the Vermont gang was actively looking at Lake Champlain after the rain. Monday, January 13(R -6 days) the IDNIYRA conference call indicated there was very little sailable ice in the Western region, so we redoubled our efforts in New England scouting for ice.

Wednesday, January 15, Eben and I left my house at 4 AM and drove to Burlington Vermont to help the Vermont guys scout ice on Lake Champlain. Eben and I, with advice from Bob Dill scouted and sailed inner and outer mallets Bay, and Bob Schumacher and Doug Merrill scouted the area called the inland Sea. We determined outer mallets Bay had too many drain holes, so we de-rigged our boats drove to the launch area for the inland Sea, and rerigged and sailed there also as the sun was setting. At the same time as the 4 of us were on Lake Champlain, David Fortier drove from Maine and Oliver Moore drove from Rhode Island to Lake Memphremegog and sailed it and confirmed the launch area was still acceptable. Wednesday evening during the IDNIYRA conference call, we had identified two viable sailing sites in the Eastern region. At the same time Andre Baby had identified a good sailing site on the St. Lawrence seaway in Montréal. In the Western region the only salable ice was Lake Senachwine near Peru, Illinois. The decision was made to delay the location decision until Thursday evening, with a tentative primary site of Lake Senachwine and a backup site in Montréal. Bob Schumacher and his wife were kind enough to put Eben and myself up overnight. Thursday morning Eben and I drove up to Montréal and sailed at Lac St. Louis with Andre and Jasick.

Thursday night the governing committee decided to call the 2014 N. Americans on for Peru, Illinois, despite a forecast calling for 2 to 4 inches of snow on Saturday.

Eben and I left Montréal at 4 AM on Friday bound for Illinois. We got there around 10 PM on Friday and crashed out at the hotel.

Saturday we got up and left the hotel around 10 AM drove down to the race site and started rigging our boats, it was already starting to snow. By the time we were ready to sail there was at least 4 inch drifts and building. Most boats did not even bother to set up. We packed our boats up put them back in the trailer and drove back to the hotel as both of us thought we would not be able to race at that location. Now the race committee was stuck with 80 competitors in Illinois, with no sailable ice in the Western region. The decision was made to hold everybody at the host hotel, until a new location could be found.

Ice checkers were dispatched to possible locations at Pymatuning Reservoir on the Pennsylvania Ohio and Lake Clinton in Illinois.
Early Sunday morning Bob Schumacher Don Brush and Louise Racine drove eight hours straight through to Pymatuning. They were met by DN racer Ben Shavits, who already had his boat rigged and waiting. Bob and Don Brush sailed Pymatuning and concluded the snowdrifts were too high for fair racing.

That same day sailors drove one and a half hours south to evaluate Lake Clinton a small lake in IL This venture did not turn pan out.

Andre Baby had stayed behind in Montréal and had been sailing every day. He was reporting excellent snow ice. With no closer options available, Sunday night the regatta was officially moved to Montréal.

Eben and I left Sunday evening for Montréal. We drove till about midnight and stayed in a hotel just before the Canadian border at Sarnia.

The next morning we started driving around 7:30 AM and on the custom line when we got the word from Andre Baby that Montréal had received two inches of snow the night before and it had drifted making it unsailable. Eben and I crossed the border, had a great breakfast and scouted the western shore of Lake St. Clair in Canada. We were in the area anyway but found it fit only for snowmobile racing.

Meanwhile, Jim Theiler and Oliver Moore stopped and scouted Hamilton Ontario, desperately looking for a good race site.

Eben and I then spent the day at a truck stop in the boonies of Canada on the phone talking to various people across the East looking for ice. We were very fortunate that Louise Racine had stopped in Plattsburgh NY to visit with her mother, on her way back and called in early Monday morning to say that the Plattsburgh side of Lake Champlain was snow free. This was the best news we had had in a few days and experienced eyes needed to evaluate conditions.

Bob Schumacher and Don Brush had driven straight through back to Vermont the night before. Bob then drove to Plattsburgh Vermont with Bob Dill. There they met Louise, as well as Rich Crucett and friend that were driving from Long Island to Montréal. Collectively they sailed and found a suitable plate of ice on Cumberland Bay north of Plattsburgh New York.

Remarkably just ten hours after being snowed out in Montréal, we had already found an alternative site. The DN North Americans were moved to Plattsburgh and called on for Cumberland Bay, with racing to start Thursday morning, about 45 boats made the drive from Illinois.

The New England gang spent Tuesday and Wednesday sailing the site in Cumberland Bay. There was some snow on the site, and it was brutally cold. By late Wednesday the drifts were getting very stiff and Styrofoam like. With lighter winds expected for Thursday we were getting nervous about Cumberland Bay.

Bob Dill had crossed the ferry from the Vermont side and had indicated that there was a new plate of black ice in Plattsburgh Bay itself.

Thursday morning four sailors from New England (Chad, Oliver, Don Brush, Eric), plus Andre Baby scouted the new plate in Plattsburgh Bay. Racing was delayed that morning anyway due to extremely low temperatures.

Plattsburgh bay had beautiful black ice with an interesting layer of Hoar Frost on top. After pulling some strings we received permission from the City of Plattsburgh to launch at the public pier. We moved the boats from Cumberland Bay to Plattsburgh bay and racing got underway with the silver fleet qualifier just before dusk. Racing had finally started!

Friday we had a great day of racing and ended the day with four races in each fleet. By the last race it was blowing over 20 with lots of spin outs and lead changes, very exciting racing!

Saturday morning we got up, but the race committee had decided that due to wind conditions the North Americans was finished. After the award ceremony, we went down to the ice to de-rig our boats, the wind was howling through the rigging. A wise call by the race committee. It was nice to have a short five hour drive home after the regatta.

And that folks is what it takes to find ice for a big event. I was extremely proud of how hard everybody in the East worked to make this happen. A big round of applause goes to all the sailors who helped make this happen and especially to Eben Whitcomb, the IDNIYRA Eastern Rear Commodore.

Guess what? Next year we get to do it all again. The Eastern region in conjunction with the Canadian region will host the 2015 DN World championship January 25-30th. It’s going to take a herculean effort by a lot of people to pull this off. Join me, Eben and the rest of the DN, New England and Canadian ice boating community in helping to put on a world class international ice boating event. It all starts with ice.  Hope to see you all there.

Eric Anderson
US 5193

A Season in Front of Us

With shorter days and cooler nights we are all thinking about ice boating and the miles of black ice we hope to find this winter. Just as there are a few months till we sail again, a number of things MUST happen and individual efforts MUST take place before groups of pilots can safely congregate and sail.

Most of you know what occurs prior to setting up your boat in the pits and pushing off toward a nice plate.

Someone watched as the lakeside trees shed their leaves.

All manner of boat building advice and help is freely given.

Boats and equipment is bought, sold, traded and loaned by fellow sailors prior to first ice.

Runners are sharpened individually and en mass by skilled sanding volunteers.

Someone watched as fog and mists wafted over the body of water in the early morning hours.

Eyes were on the lake while morning frosts crept toward the water from the shore.

People gazed upon the first mirror black ice to skim out from shore.

Occasionally taking the long way to work or home to check on ice conditions.

One or more people poked at the new ice with a stick even though they know

Swung blunt instruments, a wise man from Rockport swears by the blunt end of an axe, and drilled test holes.

Talked to ice fisherman who are generally happy to break their solitude for a conversation about fish and ice.

Scouted off shore with skates, or sailing carefully stopping periodically to check grade and thickness.

People reporting back whether positive or negative. Insufficient ice or unsafe conditions change a bodies history plays an important role for future safe sailing.

Who where those someones? Who were those eyes? Who spent countless hours helping to others get ready to sail? Who communicated observations so that others would benefit?

The answer is simple. Heed the call. Members of the NEIYA. Please remember this when asked to contribute time, knowledge and skills toward club activities. Ice may form all by itself but it’s a team effort to bring people a group to the ice.

To follow is a first hand account by former Commodore Eric Anderson on the herculean efforts that he and others made to find (big) ice for last year’s DN North Americans. Eric thanks for all your contributions over the years.

Ready to help out? Contact me or any of the other officers

As we come into season let’s all sail fast, sail safe and think ice,

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary
508-377-6100 aka the hotline

P.S. Our annual meeting, swap and lunch are ON for October 25th Westborough, MA Knights of Columbus Hall. More on that shortly.

Woodenboat show Opening Day

NEITH 1907 Herreshoff sloop

NEITH 1907 Herreshoff sloop

The sailing vessel Neith a 1907 Herreshoff sloop newly restored by Taylor & Snediker Woodworking and looked after by our Commodore Captain “T” sits tied up and awaiting your visit.

For those who have never been to the woodenboat show there are dozens of fine wooden yachts to fawn over as well as 100’s of woodcraft and nautical vendors all in one place. And all the activities that Historic Mystic Seaport usually has to offer.



Don’t miss out on sailing one of the classic cat boats or row out on the Mystic River in a dory. Could there be some impromptu match racing to the Mystic River Bridge? Maybe…

Gervais_live_oakSee what’s left of the Gervais Live Oak Tree. Any relation to a VT ice boater we know? You will have to ask him.

The event goes on all weekend, starting today.  T will be aboard or close by the Neith all weekend ready to give tours


See you there on Saturday.

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary
Cell 203-539-1891


Last week I asked the membership to share any and all memories of Rich Crucet.  Below are pictures and your thoughts.

Myself and a hardy contingent of seven NEIYA members attended Rich’s memorial dinner.  Most striking was the consistency of remembrances.  To sum up my own thoughts and the community’s , Rich was truly an altruistic person both off and on the ice.


In 2003 I was doing my first big regattas (Worlds and NA’s) at Plattsburgh, NY. I had only been sailing DNs for a year or two and one afternoon I was looking for a lighter helmet to replace the monstrous snowmobile helmet I had. A few people sent me to look for some guy named Bob Schumacher who had a few Jofa helmets to sell.

I was new and barely knew any faces or names but someone pointed me to a camper van and said he might be in there-

The door was open and I recall looking in and there was a group of guys crowded around a table full of beer and food. I can still recall the aroma…. Some guy with crazy dark hair and a shit-eating grin was telling stories and busting chops- and invited me in for a beer, a meal and, it turned out, to razz the new guy for awhile…. Had a few much-needed laughs!

That’s how I met Rich. Thanks for letting the new kid hang with the big boys that day. And for everything else.

Sail on, man.

James “T” Thieler
DN US 5224


Rich was clever and inventive, in addition to other fine qualities…

Ted Amaral

Editor’s note:  Look for parking brake photo in tribute album from Mallett’s Bay in Colchester, Vermont March 14, 2009. Also check out the vintage Lake Ronkonkoma ice creepers.


Rich first approached me when I went down to New England by myself to race in the NE’s at Lake Champlain almost ten years ago.

Rich saw me with the KC on the sail while setting up my boat and invited me to join him and others in his camper to have freshly baked blueberry bran muffins. That was my first impression of Rich Crucet.

How cool is that…

… almost ten years ago, he has always remembered my name since and has always approached me to say hello and chat at every event.

Rich was a great brother in our beloved sport. We will definitely miss him.


Bob Crinion
DN KC  4536


During the years I organized the NEIYA Swap Meet and Annual meeting I would always get a call from Rich to let me know how big a crowd he had rounded up from among his NY ice boating friends.  And who could say no to Rich with his excitement, passion and energy to make the annual trek to central Massachusetts.  He would bring a van load, no make that a boat load of people for a day of fun and camaraderie.  Our calls would inevitably turn to plans for winter sailing and always lasted for longer than either of us had anticipated.  Rich truly enjoyed people, commiserating with old friends and new friend alike.

His spirit, vitality and joy of life will be missed by his many ice boating buddies from across the Northeast.

Henry Capotosto
Former NEIYA Treasurer


I would like to add how generous he was – when we were at Gilbert Brook Marina, he offered to let me use his “facilities” and also was so gracious to let me try and use his push sled which I had a blast on.  It was the first time meeting him and we were instant friends.  He was that kind of guy.  He will be missed by many.

Kristen Buckley


Rich was an ice boat RACER and a true ice boat ENTHUSIAST!   He was always there to lend a hand, I will miss him.

Dave Fortier
DN US 4690


I met Rich for the first time this year while helping to scout Champlain ice for the DN North Americans.  My first impression was of this crazy looking guy, with a wonderful long island accent, in a ford dually with a camper and trailer.   Rich jumps out and starts talking about ice conditions.  Being new to the sport I quickly realized that ice boaters are a “different breed of cat”…. Having spent a day killing time with T, Oliver and Chad in Peru IL, I quickly came to the conclusion that their heads are wired differently than the rest of the general population and Rich was no exception.

Rich and the boys went out scouting ice sailing and pushing and upon returning was heard to say.

REALLY….. REALLY!!!!!  Like every time I use that sail the wind dies and I have to walk and push the boat in……”  (sadly shaking his head with a disgusted look in his eyes….).

Over the course of the days racing that weekend and the following I enjoyed some wonderful meals (soup and hot dogs cooked with a bernzomatic torch) and conservation in the camper with Rich and who ever stumbled in…

It was a pleasure listening to him describe his wife, their relationship and their adventures together.  “We’ve got the money, you never know when you are going to die and it will be all over.  My wife wants me to spend it, go enjoy and play and do the things that make you happy because it is over all too soon. ”

It has been an honor to know you Rich.

Louise Megan-Racine


I had a nice conversation with Rich this fall at the meeting/swap meet.  He told me about putting wheels on his DN and practicing race starts in the street in front of his house.  He would push the boat without a sail  down the street and jumping in simulating multiple starts to the bewilderment of his neighbors.  I saw him again up in Pittsburgh on Lake Champlain. He was a familiar, friendly face of enthusiasm for the sport of ice boating. My heart goes out to Rich’s family.

Kate Marrone

Thanks to all that shared their memories or just thought about their times with Rich on or off the ice over the past few days.

Rich sail fast on fair winds and shore to shore black ice,

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary

P.S. Please feel free to leave comments for all  below.

Crys of Spring but not from that woman of a certain weight

Happy April Fools’ Day!  I started writing my weekly recap last night as I have tried to do over this challenging season.  My original intent, a grand Fools’ Day joke singing praises of some previously unsailed centrally located lake with hard snow ice tight to the shores with a prediction of moderate breezes.  Three things halted and changed my course.  The fear of a lynch mob armed with unused freshly sharpened runners from our tune up last fall.  The extraordinary efforts many of us have gone through to sail this season.  The thousands of scouting miles and even more getting to and back from those destinations.  The final deciding factor was the fear that one or more amongst us would load up and drive to this mock plate of ice.  I’ve driven 7+ hours to sail and turned around without rigging the boat and know that that’s nothing compared to some of this year’s exploits.

More on this years extraordinary scouting efforts to come in the next installment.

In all seriousness, the guys in Maine (CIBC) have been sailing this week on Megunticook in Camden and there are rumors that Sunnapee’s snows have melted and the surface could be sailable but as yet unconfirmed.  Kate, Ron now’s the time to raise your voices.  Can we still get in the NEs and our Spring Fling?  I have been accused of being overly optimistic so I will just say maybe and stay tuned.  If they are sailing in Maine, there is still hope.  Don’t move the gear to its summer resting place just yet.


Till #lastice2014

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary









One of the last…

This weekend brought more of the same and some surprises of a pleasant variety for a change. People traveling to race and scout ice on distant ice and a small lake in CT, Bantam, that will just not give up her ice.




As previously reported we had a great showing at the Canadian Championships with Commodore Thieler and Race Chairman Moore taking first and second.  Way to go guys!  Looking like T and Oliver figured out how to harness the wind off the turbines








Bantam in CT has kept her ice and maintained reasonable access with planks. The plate was sailed on both Saturday and Sunday in stiff breezes till the surface mushed over. A good turn out of NEIYA members including your secretary on Saturday and Bob Haag, Paul Zucco, Dave Burnham and Matt Brennan from NJ.   How about some pictures next time guys.  Always amazes me how the southern NE state of CT turns out so many ice boaters. Something in the water?

Doing my part by introducing a couple young guys to the sport. No they are not mine!



Paul Delnero has reported that Lake Attitash’s plate has broken in two and he has move onto some great sailing on Lake Massabesic Manchester NH. They had a good crowd and are likely sailing there today as I type this (lucky them). Let’s hope it survives the coming weather. Paul, where are the pictures? prying eyes what to see.

Some members have slipped off in the night and boarded a plane for the hard fast Ivanpah playa in NV and the America’s Land Sailing Cup.  Who can blame them. It’s warm, the wind usually blows stink, the weather is reasonably predictable and it’s right next to Las Vegas.

Good luck over the next four days of racing to Bob Schumacher, Greg Cornelius and Paul Gervais!  Show the dirt boat guys how we race in New England.

Photos and results pinched from Facebook land sailing page FB sign in required (sorry just the way it’s set up).

I have not been out in a number of years but highly recommend it to anyone looking to extend the thrills of their ice boating season or just for the hell of it.  If you love ice boating you will love sailing in the dirt.  The North American Land Sailing Association is holding a huge international event in mid July Info at

I am getting that super powerful feeling of Deja vu.  It’s the beginning of the week and all eyes are on yet another weather system plowing up the coast.  Barring disastrous impact the New England DN championships and the NEIYA “Spring Fling” will take place on a nice big plate of ice.  Run whatever you bring.  You know the drill, location TBD but lots of eyes are on Maine.

As T has already stated don’t put away your gear just yet and keep the car packed.  The NEIYA “Hell on Wheels” will be arriving at a nearby lake this weekend for racing and Spring Fling celebration of #lastice2014.

See you on the ice,

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary

Still More Ice – March 15-17th Recap

It is that time of year again, #lastice2014.  Ice is out on many of our favorites and all eyes are watching the melt down and nightly resurfacing on others.  In my backyard Holly Pond, a brackish mill pond opening up to the Long Island Sound, was skimmed over shore to shore at 7:00 am this morning.  I’d like to think otherwise but  know it’s done for the next 10 months.

Bantam lake in CT was sailed on Saturday and Sunday. Things were a bit mushy on Saturday and the better day was certainly Sunday.  We will have to see how long this lasts.  As we near the end, be especially careful.

Webster lake was the place to be for St. Patrick’s Day. No green ice but seven boats sailed in a good breeze of 10-15 in the morning, moderate mid-day, and lightening toward late afternoon.  Ice was hard snow ice, somewhat rough, but fast enough with a breeze to be fun. It was cold, 20 degrees, and the ice was tight to the the shore in the launch area. It is expected to be cold through Tuesday. This may not be the last of Webster. Stay tuned and be extra cautious.

As you have no doubt already read on the CIBC site the snow melted and people are sailing once again.  Looking like there may be a couple more road trips in the near future.

We will continue till #lastice2014.  Keep the faith there is more sailing to be had and the New England’s to run.  With the return of T and Oliver, competition will be at it’s peak for the season!

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary

P.S. I know I am missing something out there in New England.  Please don’t keep it to yourself.
P.P.S. Maybe an occupational hazard or some other strange affliction but the NEIYA speaks hashtag.  #lastice2014 use it…

March 8-9th Weekend Picture Recap

The weekend report is running a little late as I had one eye on the weather and was hoping to bring good news for this coming weekend.  Well, lesson learned don’t delay as this season continues to challenge us all.

Reporting from Long Pond in Lakeville  Jeff Soderholm and Bill Converse both got some sailing in challenging spring like conditions.

Ice softened to slush over the weekend by early afternoon.  Some people started out at dawn to get the most in for the day.  If there is ice they will come, even setting up in the dark. Proving once again that in tough years extra efforts are required to get in ice time.

Click images for more from Long Pond and Sebago

As promised by the CIBC gang Sebego had a good surface and easy drive on access. We got to fly the NEIYA banner for the first time, thanks to Greg Cornelius for securing this for us. Looking forward to having it and it’s counter part proudly flown when and where ever we gather.

Flying the NEIYA Colors

As previously reported the Don “Doc” Fellow was held on Saturday and the Maine State Open on Sunday. Thanks to Steve Madden and Dave Fortier for their advance scouting and officiating. I don’t know who to thank from Nason’s Beach & Campground but thanks just the same for the convenient access. All that’s left to talk about is where the clipboard went, the good competition (no Bob, I don’t count this one as a win over you) and the pictures.

Special thanks go to John Hayes from Pownal, ME for sharing his photography with us. Even though I said everything I could to discourage him, John wants to get a boat and join us. Anyone have a decent reasonably priced craft that needs a good home?  The full album is available here

I was reminded recently of something we all know from someone who has logged 40+ years of ice time. Keep an eye out not only for yourself but your sailing buddies as well.  This  is especially important during spring-like and other unstable times to.   Keep a sharp watch out during the day.  If anyone gets in trouble you may be their only hope.  Ice is a living thing and pressure ridges and other hazards can emerge while your out sailing about.  Always be aware there are know, unknown and hazards forming on the horizon.

Sail fast, sail safe and be aware and watch out for everyone on the ice. Keep the faith as the season is not over just yet. Lets hope we gather somewhere this weekend.

John Stanton
NEIYA Secretary

2014 Don “Doc” Fellows Regatta is Completed!

The NEIYA Don “Doc” Fellows was run Saturday 3/8/14 on Sebago Lake (big bay), N. Sebago Maine on a big patch of good ice.  Patience was the rule of the day and a gigantic high over the lake ruled the wind.  The race was to be called off at 3:30 if the wind had not arrived.  Well, the wind Gods must have be listening.

Just before the abandonment call, the wind rolled in.  It did not slowly build as usual but came in at 12 to 15 mph, almost instantly!

We were off to the races to quickly set the marks and line.  Four races were completed before darkness set in.  One throw out was allowed with the completion of the 4th.

Eric Anderson ruled the day with 4 bullets.  Nicely done Eric!  On his heels was the tough competitor Greg Cornelius with a solid second place sporting some of his light air gear and still managed to hang in there.  Dave Fortier nailed third place and was super fast catching the fleet.  It was fun to watch the two Canadians Warren Nethercote (4th) and Peter Van Rossem (5th) duke it out with Warren just edging out Peter.  Thanks for going the distance.  Jack Erikson (6th) hung tough and consistent and was quoted ” I had a blast”.  Doug Raymond (7th) struggled a bit, but likely due to lack of racing ice time.  We look forward to seeing Doug rekindle that competitive spirit.  We were honored to have two NEIYA officers, Secretary John Stanton (8th) and Treasurer Bob Haag (9th) participate and gave it their all.  Unfortunately, Bob broke his tiller early on but he was later overheard saying ” All I wanted was to kick John’s butt”.  Must be some officer thing! Just kidding guys!

See you at the New England Champs.

Steve Madden

P.S.  Don “Doc” Fellows regatta history including a list of past winners and recaps.  We are a little short on some of the history so please let me know if you can help filling in some early info.