Home Activities & Entertainment WIRW Kids Camp gets Sponsor

WIRW Kids Camp gets Sponsor

by Kurt Hoehne

Charley and Schelleen Rathkopf, the new owners of Whidbey Island Race Week, are doing a lot more than talking about a kids camp. They’d already named a camp director, and now they have a title sponsor to get it started, The Brenda Van Fossen, MD Kids Zone is a reality. The staff has actually been assembled (bios below). There are a limited number of spaces, so if you’re planning on Race Week, and have kids, you might want to follow this link to get them signed up.


Press Release:

Seattle, Washington: Whidbey Island Race Week, the premier sailboat-racing regatta in the Pacific Northwest, announces the Brenda Van Fossen, MD Kids Zone at Whidbey Island Race Week, happening in Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island, Washington July 18-24, 2015.

I think Kid Zone at Whidbey Island Race Week is a fantastic idea and I want to see it be successful.What a great way to get kids into sailing and it will allow the parent to race at Whidbey Island Race Week knowing their kids are having fun too.”

 Brenda Van Fossen, MD is a board certified pediatrician with MultiCare Health System in Auburn, Washington. She started sailing as a teenager on a Cascade 29 and has attended every Whidbey Island Race Week since 2003. For her first several years racing at Whidbey Island Race Week, Dr. Van Fossen sailed the Melges 24, Cool Beans, with an all women crew. She has also crewed on the Olson 911, Kowloon, and has raced the last few years with the G&S One Ton, Absolutely. As a mom who has struggled to find quality child care to allow her to race, Dr. Van Fossen was excited to hear about the new Kids Zone happening at Whidbey Island Race Week beginning in 2015. Supporting the program financially speaks to her love for kids and for sailing, and is her way to ensure that this new program is a success.

The Kids Zone area at Whidbey Island Race Week will now be referred to as the Brenda Van Fossen, MD Kids Zone. This is where parents will pick up and drop off their kids for the new Kids Camp program and it will also be the area reserved for kid activities during the post-race party events happening each day from 6-8 pm on the south lawn of the Oak Harbor Yacht Club. Parents will not need to leave the party area to enjoy post-race time with their kids. The Brenda Van Fossen, MD Kids Zone will include a bouncy house, face painting and other fun activities inside the parameters of the fenced-in party area.

The financial support provided by Dr. Van Fossen will also help support the Kids Camp staffing requirements at Whidbey Island Race Week. A Camp Director and two counselors have been hired to run Kids Camp and their bios are included below. Registration for WIRW Kids Camp started on September 1, 2014 at: http://whidbeyislandraceweek.com/kids-camp/. There are currently 5 children signed up. The Kids Camp capacity is 20 kids for 2015.


Kellee Edwards, WIRW Kids Camp Director

Kellee Edwards will be the Whidbey Island Race Week Kids Camp Director. Kellee grew up in San Diego, California, attended Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY, and graduated with a BFA degree in Art and Design Education with highest honors. Kellee has taught in both the New York City Department of Education and the San Diego Unified School District. She ran the Child Care programs at Discovery Park for the Seattle Parks and Recreation/ARC, ages 5-12 for two years. She was responsible for the leadership and management of the entire summer camp program that included day-to-day camp activity planning and operation, curriculum development, first aide, scheduling, field trips, and budgeting. Kellee also volunteered in the education department at the Seattle Art Museum and currently works as the Preschool Director for the Ballard Community Center in Seattle, Washington with responsibility for the daily operation of the preschool program. She acts as administrator, supervisor and a primary classroom teacher. Kellee is pursuing her Master’s of Education at the University of Washington, with a concentration in Educational Policy and is very excited to be a part of Whidbey Island Race Week.

Allison Trunkey, WIRW Kids Camp Counselor & Sailing Instructor

Allison Trunkey’s passion for sailing began at a very early age. By 7th grade, she was on the school

sailing team, where she learned dinghy racing techniques on Vanguard 15s, FJ’s, and Lasers. During her summers, she taught kids how to sail, and earned her US Sailing Instructor Certification while in high school. Allison has taught Opti, Laser II, and C-Lark sailing for Kitsap Sailing and Rowing Foundation and Bremerton Yacht Club programs and is currently a college student at Skidmore College in New York. (However, she’s spending her first semester studying abroad in London, England that she describes as “an unbelievable history and Harry Potter filled adventure!”) She’s really looking forward to working with your kids at Whidbey Island Race Week in 2015 and sharing her passion for sailing.

True Loan, WIRW Kids Camp Counselor & Sailing Instructor

True Loan started sailing in 8th grade on Tall Ships, including the Schooner Lavengro, the Schooner Zodiac, the Hawaiian Chieftain, and the Lady Washington. He joined his first competitive sailing team in 10th grade and learned to sail Vanguard 15’s, Lasers, Laser IIs, FJs, C-Larks, in addition to windsurfing. He’s been teaching kids and adults to sail for the past 3 years, and earned his US Sailing Instructor Certification last summer. True is currently a student at University of California, Berkeley where’s he’s an avid member of the Cal Marching Band and he’s really looking forward to working with your kids at Whidbey Island Race Week in 2015 and sharing his love of sailing.

About WIRW Kids Camp Sailing Instruction

Sailing instruction will be designed for beginners and will cover how and why sailboats sail, sailing vocabulary, how to rig the boat, how to steer the boat, how to recover from a capsize, basic rules of sailing, the basic points of sailing and how to trim sails,jibing, docking, safety positions and storing of boats and equipment. The sailing instructors will use sailing games, some land drills and start out all kids with figure 8s until the kids can steer straight and tack well.

About Whidbey Island Race Week

Whidbey Island Race Week is the premier sailboat racing event in the Pacific Northwest that attracts hundreds of sailboat and yachting enthusiasts. For 32 years, thousands of sailboat racers have made their way to Oak Harbor, Washington in July to participate in this week-long sailboat racing regatta. The venue for the event is the Oak Harbor Yacht Club & Oak Harbor Marina and the PHRF and One Design racing is offered inside Penn Cove near Coupeville and Saratoga Passage. In 2015, boats under 24 feet will race Saturday, July 18 and Sunday, July 19. The big boats will race daily Monday, July 20 through Friday, July 24. For the past 11 years, US Sailing Certified Regional Race Officer, Charley Rathkopf, has served as the Primary Race Officer for Whidbey Island Race Week and his race committee team has earned the reputation of offering some of the best race management in the country.

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