Home Making Waves Making Waves – May 2022

Making Waves – May 2022

by Randy Woods

The ‘20s Will Finally Roar Again for Opening Day 2022

The 2020s didn’t quite have a great start, to say the least, but that’s no reason to dampen the coming “Roaring 20s” party in Seattle for the Opening Day of boating season. On May 7, the ‘20s of this century can finally begin on a high note, with the return of Seattle Yacht Club’s annual party and parade. After skipping the 2020 and 2021 festivities due to Covid protocols, the boating community is ready to kick up its heels with a much delayed celebration of recreational boating and traditional host Seattle Yacht Club expects to have a heavy turnout.

Admiralette Jan Holbrook said the 1920s were a time of celebration. “Much like today, it was a progressive period in time where culture and lifestyle were evolving and growing in a positive direction,” she said. “We want to channel that as we bring people back together again for Opening Day this year.”

The festivities will begin at 10 a.m. with the Windermere Cup Regatta, then following the Regatta, the traditional cannon blast will sound at noon to raise the Montlake Bridge and begin the two-hour parade of vessels adorned with decorations from the 1920s as they cruise through the Montlake Cut. On the SYC lawn at Portage Bay, a jazz band will play music from the era to get revelers in the mood for flapper dresses and pinstripe suits.

A wide array of small and large boats is expected to take part in the parade, including row and paddle boats, antique boats, yachts, and sailboats with spinnakers flying. The Seattle Fire Department will participate with its fire boats sending out clouds of spray to mark the occasion, and to set the musical tempo, two small flotillas of yachts will carry members from the University of Washington and Washington State University marching bands.

Vice Admiral Lance Rummel pointed out that 1920, which was the first year the Opening Day event was held in Montlake Cut, also marked the end of the “Spanish Flu” that held the world in its grip a century ago. With Covid finally in retreat, “this is our booming return to tradition with a parade, University of Washington crew races, and enthusiastic spectators,” Rummel said. “It all really resonates, then and now.”

For more detailed information about Opening Day events, please visit: seattleyachtclub.org.

The University of Washington men’s & women’s rowing teams won both of their races in the Windermere Cup held on Lake Washington and the Montlake Cut in Seattle on May 4, 2019. (Photography by Scott Eklund/Red Box Pictures)

Windermere Cup Racing Returns to the Cut

If a rowing regatta is held, but there’s no one there to watch it, did it really happen? Well, yes, it did in 2021, even though no spectators were allowed. But this year, with Covid concerns on the wane, boating spectators are highly encouraged to bear witness to the return of the Windermere Cup in front of a live audience.

Held concurrently with the May 7 Opening Day festivities around Seattle’s Montlake Cut, the Windermere Cup race will have an international feel, with the women’s national team from Great Britain, the men’s national team from the Netherlands, and the men and women’s varsity teams from the University of Washington. More than 800 athletes will compete in the Regatta, including masters, juniors, collegiate, national, International, and Olympic racers.

The night before the race, on May 6, the celebration will begin with the 4th annual Party on the Cut, which will feature boats, bites, brews, and bands. A $25 entrance fee gives spectators access to food trucks, drinks, games, and other fun activities, from 6 to 10 p.m. Attendees can also get sneak peeks at the Windermere Cup racers as they perform mini twilight sprints on the Cut. Live music will also be provided by the band Nite Wave, who will perform the top hits from the 1980s. The party will be held at the northeast corner of the Montlake Cut, near the UW Waterfront Activity Center.

The first of two dozen races begin at 10 a.m. on May 7, which can be viewed along the shores of the Montlake Cut, or by boat that’s anchored to a log boom in Lake Washington. Following the races, fans are invited to join the Regatta winners for an awards ceremony and presentation of the Windermere Cup Trophy on the stage located near the video board on the northwest side of the Montlake Cut, near the finish line.

For more information on the Windermere Cup and Party on the Cut events, please visit: windermerecup.withwre.com.

Marina Reservations Increasingly Made Online via Dockwa Platform

Summer boating season is almost upon us. Have you made your marina reservations yet? If you have, the chances are increasingly likely that your reservation was made through Dockwa, an online booking platform for marina space.

One of Dockwa’s most recent additions is Roche Harbor Marina on San Juan Island. As one of the most popular destinations for boaters in the Pacific Northwest, Roche Harbor’s limited dock space is at a premium in the summer months. As a result, Dockwa, which handles the immense complexity and variability of dock space management, has become a user-friendly option for boaters, much like online airfare reservation services transformed the airline industry 25 years ago.

Dockwa co-founder and CEO Mile Melillo said in a letter to his customers in January that the company had recently completed a $30 million Series C venture funding round to expand the company internationally, given that marina bookings thought the site had grown by 300% over the previous year’s figures. One of the reasons for the popularity of online bookings has been the Covid pandemic, which has greatly boosted interest in boating as a way to find recreation while social distancing. Melillo also said that the $18 billion marina industry is one of the last to embrace digitization. Many marinas, he said, rely on telephone contact to handle reservations, and several are still cash-only businesses. 

The platform is one of many players that are emerging in the marina management software segment. Companies like DockMaster, Anchorsoft, EasyPier, MarinaOffice, Harbour Assist, Marina Controller, and many others are beginning to modernize what has been a relatively old-fashioned system. So, if you’re a boater who still need to reserve space in the San Juans this summer, or at one of the more than 100 marinas in the Puget Sound area, your better bet might be to hop online, rather than play phone tag.

To see a list of all Washington marinas using the platform for reservations, visit: dockwa.com.

Rolls-Royce, Westport Yachts Join to Debut ‘Clean’ MTU Engines in U.S.
Known mostly for producing exceptionally luxurious cars and advanced aircraft engines, United Kingdom’s Rolls-Royce has joined forces with Westport Yachts out of Westport, Washington, to create the new MTU Series 2000 eco-friendly engines, which have recently debuted in the Westport 125 model yacht.

The release of the new 16V 2000 M97L in the Westport 125 is be the debut of the low-emissions engines in a U.S.-built vessel.

The MTUs, with an output of 2,600 hp, are designed with an integrated Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system, which drastically reduces nitrogen-oxide emissions. By using the Rolls-Royce technology, the Westport 125 earns the IMO III certification, which will enable it to operate in emissions-protected areas, known as ECA zones, along the U.S. and Canadian coasts, as well as in the North and Baltic seas.

“This is an important milestone for the next evolutionary stage of this engine series, as well as for our efforts to become a provider of integrated sustainable solutions,” said Christof von Bank, director of Marine, Americas, at Rolls-Royce.

Daryl Wakefield, president of Westport Yachts, described the MTUs as the “cleanest” marine engines in Westport’s newest motor yacht. “They ensure maximum power, reliability and ease of mind to our customers, who can concentrate on enjoying their yachting adventures,” he said.    

In addition, Rolls-Royce said it will approve the use of sustainable biofuels, such as synthetic diesel, by 2023 in the MTU Series 2000 and 4000 engines. The British company also said it is building new, CO2-free, fuel-cell systems and methanol engines to help reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the environment.

Save the Date: Classic Yacht Association to Resume Bell Harbor Rendezvous

Following the last two years of either nonexistent or severely reduced rendezvous gatherings in the Puget Sound region, the Classic Yacht Association (CYA) said it will resume its annual Bell Harbor Rendezvous in June.

The Bell Harbor Marina on Elliott Bay will be the site of the June 18-19 event, which will mark the 25th anniversary of what CYA said is the “largest gathering of classic power yachts in the United States.” Admission will be free to the public, with several of the participating boats open for tours.

One of the show’s highlights is the annual bestowing of the Engine Preservation Award, which recognizes the dedication of classic boat owners in maintaining their vessels’ decades-old power plants.

While the CYA Bell Harbor rendezvous began in 1997, its origins go back to the Port Ludlow show  of June 1983 that featured free moorage for two nights, public viewing, and an outdoor barbeque. With the opening of the new Bell Street Marina in 1996, the CYA event moved to the Seattle,waterfront at Pier 66.

In most recent years, the event has had more than 40 Pacific Northwest yachts in attendance; the record high was 54 boats in 2006. With the 25th anniversary looming, CYA said it plans to “stuff as many boats as possible into the Bell Harbor Marina.”

The CYA show is supported by the Port of Seattle and several sponsors, including Lake Union Dry Dock Company, Haven Boat Works, the Port Townsend Shipwright’s Co-Op, Fisheries Supply, CSR Boatyard, Pacific Fisherman Boatyard, and Canvas Supply.

For more information, visit: cya.wildapricot.org/pnw-events

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