Author Archive

Greenport Maritime Festival: Iceboat Display This Weekend

Come on out to Eastern Long Island this weekend for the Maritime Festival in Greenport, NY, Sep. 23rd & 24th.  The organizers have asked that we display some Iceboats again in the regular location.  I will be attending my daughters wedding but have 2 J14s and an Option Ice for display.
Back in the shop  and under construction in Greenport. A Pat Heppert design C Skeeter for George Neyssen, this will be the 3rd model to this design.

Winter Is Coming And Our Annual Swap & Meeting

It’s that time of year again so start dragging your old gear from storage and get ready to bring it to the annual Swap meet. Your old gear will be new and fast for someone else. Once again its time to get together with our winter friends. Friends that share the passion of sailing fast, sailing fast on ice.

Don’t miss out. Bring a friend or two or three. Bring someone new, drag out an old ice boater. Come one come all…

When: Saturday October 28th – 9:00 am to 3:00 pm or so
Knights of Columbus Hall 17 Willow St, Westborough, MA 01581

See you there,

John Stanton
NEIYA Vice Commodore

Looking Forward To The Coming Season


As I prepare for the upcoming season and words flowed onto the screen I knew that I had said it all before, so here it is, below. Some recycled content from a few years ago. We are in need of someone to help out with the Website as well collect and report ice conditions. The web is easy and requires no hardcore tech. I will guide.

A Look Forward

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 watches as the lakeside trees shed their leaves.

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

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

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

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

Eyes are on the lake while morning frosts creep toward the water from the shore.

People gaze 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 poke at the new ice with a stick even though they know it is not ready.

Swinging blunt instruments upon the ice, a wise man from Rockport swears by the blunt end of an axe, and drills test holes.

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

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

People report back whether, positive or negative results. Insufficient ice or unsafe conditions change. A body of water’s 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 forms all by itself but it’s a team effort to bring a group of people the ice.

Ready to help out? We are in need of someone to manage the collection and distribution of ice conditions for both Rec and Racers. Also looking for someone to manage our website. Fear not, you do not have to be tech savy, only an interest in the Web and a desire to learn. 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, Vice Commodore

P.S. Our annual meeting, swap and lunch are ON for Saturday October 28th Westborough, MA Knights of Columbus Hall. More on that shortly.

Graduation Party – Long Island (Ice Boat) Style

A graduation celebration only an ice boating family and fellow iceboaters will understand. Congratulations to Hunter Rainis on his graduation.

Pictured are Hank Kasier and his nephew Hunter Rainis and his younger brother Henry. Recent graduate Hunter was super surprised and pumped when Hank presented him with the Iceboat.

Bowing to his mother’s wishes to be clean shaven, Hunter attempted to make things right with a touch up from his newly sharpened blades.

Hank’s family joined in the celebration and presentation of the DN! Sweat rewards for all his hard work. Also pictured are Hank parents, sisters, their husbands, nieces and nephews.

Hunter has sailed with Hank on the Ice at Mecox and Swann Lake and also sailed in school at Monmouth University. All are enjoying the beach for the moment and hoping for a cold winter with smooth ice to sail on.

We look forward to seeing Hank and everyone else on the ice in an optimistic four months.

From Long Island NY

Pete Ranis


Fourth of July in January

Courtesy  John Valentine


Spring 2017 CSI Gathering Recap

A good crowd gathered yesterday and to hear of recent, past and talk of adventures yet to occur.

Commodore James “T” Thieler and Eben Whitcomb entertained the crowd with tales from their recent trip to Baikal. Through words and pictures we felt like we were there with them. Thanks to both for taking the stage…

Leo Healy, life long ice boater and NEIYA founding member, shared stories from his own Baikal trip during the closing years of the Cold War in the late 80’s. From my account they were not that different, so must be true.

No trip to CSI would be complete without getting a peak at some of the Go-Faster innovations Jeff is working on. The latest items include █████, █████████ a new ███████████ and █████. Sorry for the redaction. You will just have to show up the next time.

Big thanks to Jeff Kent for once again inviting us all to  CSI (

The NEIYA traveler’s award goes to island dwellers from Long Island, NY and Nantucket. Cheers to the eight guys that journeyed across water and land to participate. And special thanks to Paul from Albany show showed up on the CSI doorstep looking to upgrade his program for racing. Paul we hope to see you on the line next season.

It’s going to be a long hot summer but the ice will come in the third quarter.


P.S. We are putting together a group of boat to display at Mystics Wooden Boat Show 6/30 – 7/2 if your interested in participating please reach out to me. More details in the next few days.

Tomorrow – Tales from Baikal Sat Apr 29th 11:00am

Yes, I have been outside today and yes our season is most certainly over but that’s no excuse not to come out Saturday. Whether you are new to the game or as old as the hills, looking at or talking about iceboating is top on your list of things to do anytime.

Remember it’s going to be a long hot summer and this is a great opportunity to cool down.

T and Eben have promised a great dog and pony show to entertain us. Including a live bear wrestling demonstration. Something they learned from Putin himself on the shores of Lake Baikal, Siberia. Of course, there will be ice boat discussions from start to finish so join in.


Get there at 11:00 AM enjoy your favorite beverage while drinking in decades of knowledge. A tasty lunch will be provided. Feel free to bring adult beverages of your choosing. See you there!

Date: Saturday April 29th
Time: 11:00 – 3:00 PM

Place: Composite Solutions, 41 Sharp St, Hingham, MA 02043

Think Future Ice!