Category: Opinions

The State of Sailing

When asked about the trends in sailing, the obvious answer is that new boats are not being sold like they once were and there are fewer boats on many starting lines. Okay, agreed, but Sailbuzz decided to dig a little deeper. Predictions are always tricky but two essential elements stand out.  First, we’ll do well to embrace the sailing’s diverse offerings rather than over generalize and, secondly, focusing on industry strengths, rather than the weakness move us to the favored tack faster. There are bright spots among the numbers: Grandparents are introducing their grandchildren to sailing and the kids...

Read More

Pam Wall on Sailing

You have been involved with the sailing industry for over 20 years.  What changes have your experienced since you began? I have been involved with the sailing industry over 40 years! The greatest change I have seen in the industry is electronic navigation and communication. What is the number one issue the consumer faces in 2016? The number one issue the consumer faces is rising prices in marine stores, marinas, and services for yachts. How have you experienced getting new sailors into boats and on the water? My experience in getting new sailors into boats and on the water...

Read More

Sailing Vintage FJ’s

Midwest Collegiate Sailing Association is unique as all the school teams are considered clubs and most are student led.  That means they receive little or no money from the universities so they scrape together funds  for a coach,  insurance, boat repairs, and gas to get to regattas.  It takes passionate, dedicated sailors to pull this off. The University of Toledo team exemplifies both the financial model and the resolve to having sailing at the collegiate level.  They are looking to repair their 1970’s vintage FJ’s for practice boats, find a used 420 for regattas and maybe even  find a...

Read More

Support Local Sailing

There are two ways to participate with problems.  1. Be part of the problem.  2. Be part of the solution.  Building sailing is simple; if you want sailing to grow, act locally. A quick google search of Chicago sailing reveals that that Chicago has: Six sail lofts Ten dealers Seventeen sailing/yacht clubs Eleven places to learn to sail At least two racing associations beyond the club racing Additionally: Over 150 clubs are located within a few hundred miles of downtown Chicago Many sailing schools and community sailing programs just outside of Chicago. A third of the companies that participate...

Read More

New Partner Growings Sailing

I thought I’d kick off this week with some topic that would spark a sailing spirited discussion but then I realized that the election has left me fatigued of animated language. So instead, I’ll share agreeable good news. My home lake is nestled in Cowan State Park in southwestern Ohio. The lake small and beautiful, and on good days, the pair of nesting eagles fish while we race. A robust public education program led by two park naturalists includes a kayaking, canoeing and SUP’s and this summer it was expanded to include sailing on Hobie kayaks. The pilot program...

Read More

Annapolis Show Shines

The Annapolis Sail Show, October 6-10, Annapolis, MD, generated a buzz and not just from the plethora of parties. The Annapolis waterfront was filled with boats, gear, crowds and sailing celebrities.  Ken Read, Dawn Riley, Gary Jobson, Peter Neilson, Dave Reed, Caleb Paine, Rick Doerr, Brad Kennedy, Peter Harken, Nigel Calder, Margaret Podlich, Mark Pillsbury, George Day, John Arndt, Craig Leweck, Bob Bitchin and many more sailing luminaries were spotted around the show.  It simply seemed as if all of sailing turned up. The show sported more than 150 boats in the water and acres of well-organized land and tent...

Read More

Sailbuzz for Sailors’ News

Sailing needs its own forum for news, ideas, products and services. Simple as that. As a group we are stronger when we all sail to the same mark. Like a regatta, we can be fierce competitors on the race course but when the racing is over we meet as friends to evaluate the day’s events and make plans for a better tomorrow. Sailbuzz is much the same. While we may compete in some areas, ultimately we better when are informed, share ideas that work and think strategically about the future. Sailbuzz is our virtual gathering place and the forum for...

Read More