Summer Sailstice News & Stories


Double Duty for Pantaenius Tracking in the Bermuda Race

2014 Bermuda racers have a unique opportunity to utilize their Yellowbrick tracking devices sponsored by Pantaenius, also a Summer Sailstice sponsor, by tracking their miles on June 21 to help Sailors for the Sea's ocean conservation programs.  The Bermuda race begins on Friday, June 20th meaning on Summer Sailstice, Saturday the 21st and many of the boats will be well offshore in or about the Gulf Stream.

May 8, 2014 by John A

Footloose Invitation for Sailstice 2014

Footloose has invited everyone to come sail with them this year on a Footloose charter for Summer Saisltice:  

Celebrate Sailing with Summer Sailstice

May 2, 2014 by John A

SmartPhone Apps For Tracking Your Ocean Conservation Miles

With our ocean conservation partner, Sailors for the Sea, we've recently announced the goal of all Summer Sailstice sailors sailing a collective circumnavigation to raise funds for the oceans.  You can read the announement here.  

May 1, 2014 by John A

Join a Virtual Circumnavigation to Save the Oceans

As a kid learning to sail on the coast of Maine in the 60s the ocean was still an enormously abundant resource.  One annual treat was heading down to the docks with the family for the annual Bailey Island Tuna Tournament where we'd watch the lobsterman who'd rigged up for tuna fishing bring in the 'catch of the day'.  It was impressive with large tuna often coming in at 5-700lbs and the largest one ever caught being over 800lbs.  They're all gone now.

April 28, 2014 by John A

Marinas Celebrate the Sailors in Their Slips

The National Marina organization which, for many years, has worked with marinas nationwide to promote marinas and the access they provide to the water is now also incorporating Summer Sailstice into their summer event plans.  It's an opportunity for marinas to highlight the sailors in their slips, another reason to bring people down to the water and to demonstrate the sailing side of boating.

April 28, 2014 by John A

Nqoba Mswazi Sails and Hails from South Africa.

The Clipper Round-the-World Race just passed through San Francisco in the midst of the latest iteration of the 44,000 mile race.  We’ve felt a strong connection to the race over the past for several reasons; this is their fourth trip around the planet with a stop in our home sailing waters of San Francisco, the last few times the boats have all been signed up and sailing for Summer Sailstice usually in the North At

April 24, 2014 by John A

Convoy in the Pacific Northwest

Cruising World magazine has been covering, supporting and inspiring sailing and sailors for decades.  The recent March issue contained another great cruising adventure by writer Elaine Lembo but this one also included their 2013 Summer Sailstice sail and celebration under the 'supermoon'.  Sounds like a super nice voyage.

April 23, 2014 by John A

Summer Sailstice At Strictly Sail Pacific

The recent Strictly Sail Pacific at Jack London Square in Oakland California was once again a terrific place to introduce this year's t-shirts, hats and buurgees plus see old friends and new.  A couple hundred new folks sign up to participate in Summer Sailstice 2014 but this was down from past years.  Now why is that?

April 22, 2014 by John A

Multihulls Magazine Features Summer Sailstice

We're always happy to see when publications invite their readers to join all of us in a global celebration by including a story.  Multihulls Magazine has been reporting on the catamaran and trimaran world since 1975 and wrote a great story on Summer Sailstice in their most recent issue.  The issue also has a tribute to our multihull hero Hobie Alter and 

April 20, 2014 by John A

McLube winners from coast to coast!

We decided to get a jump start on distributing prizes this year and have recently award Mclube Prizes for boat owners that had already registered their sailing plans!  We have sent prizes to owners of all kinds of boats including: Erickson, Catalina 400, Beneteau First, Rafiki 37, Catalina 30, Sabot, and a Cabo Rico sailboat! 

Anthony in San Jose will have his camera ready to snap some shots! 

Mark in New Brunswick Canada will be sailing his Beneteau (pictured below)!

April 16, 2014 by Abby

Thank You New York Times

The recent story about the couple and their children rescued 900 miles West of Cabo San Lucas reminded me that when I was 24 years old I helped sail a Westsail 32 from North Carolina to the Virgin Islands with very good friends and their almost 1 year old baby.  As all sailors know the oceans, the wilderness, the highways and the whole world is filled with young couples taking children out for adventures.

April 16, 2014 by John A
Sailstice Tales, News

Sprioll winner sails Tangier Island

April 11, 2014 by Abby

Renowned Cruisers Lin & Larry Pardey Comment on the Value of Racing

In a terrific new book Herb McCormick’s ‘As Long As It’s Fun’ covers the life and times of renowned cruising sailors Lin and Larry Pardey. They’ve lived a remarkable life sailing hundreds of thousands of miles on boats they built themselves all without an engine and all the ‘modern’ safety gear most of today’s cruisers feel is essential.

April 5, 2014 by John A

Thank You Hobie - Global News Tribute

Sailing lost one of it's most admired contributors.  Hobie Alter, creator of the ubiquitous Hobie cat, passed away leaving behind millions of sailors who's lives were enriched by their first and often many more sails on a Hobie plus the company that continues making affordable, fun sailing available to all.  The original and all subsequent Hobies have been colorful, quick and simply the expression of joy on the water.

April 1, 2014 by John A

Never More Than 50 Km From The Coast and Usually Closer To A Sailor

There aren't many countries on a continent that can say you're never more than 50km and fewer still that might be so interspersed with sailors.  Yes, some island nations just might post a challenge but, reading some recent sailing 'fun facts' coming with Aarhus, Denmark's bid to host the 2018 ISAF Sailing World Championships, you'd think there isn't a country anywhere that can compare.   It sounds like there are so many sailors you'd be practically tripping over them everywhere.

March 25, 2014 by John A

Northwest by Northwest by North

It's a popular week for the North! For some reason the most recent three events to post their invitation on the Summer Sailstice site all have North in their name: Sail Northwest in Seattle, the NorthWest Sailing Association in Chicago and the Northstar Sail Club in Detroit.

March 19, 2014 by John A

How Sailing Helped Transform the World

Would you pause a moment to think how, as a sailor, you’re messing around on one of the world’s greatest innovations? Have you thought about how the boat that gives you so many bruises but so much fun was part of the long march of human technological progress? If you’ve never thought about it that way you’ll be happy to know 12 very smart and accomplished American thinkers included the sailboat on a list of the world’s greatest breakthroughs.

March 15, 2014 by John A

2013 winner showing off their schwag!

Here are a few pictures of Capt. Jon Plowman wearing the America's Cup shirt he won in the Summersailstice drawing.






March 12, 2014 by Abby

Connecting the dots

Summer Sailstice is a unique global event celebrating sailing across the world from raceboats to cruiser to lakes and oceans. As our audience grows we wanted to let the new members of our community in behind the scenes to see what goes on during a week at Summer Sailstice.  

March 8, 2014 by Abby

Faith in the Future

Polar vortexes, deep snow, frozen lakes, frigid forecasts but still there is faith in the sailing future.

March 4, 2014 by John A

New Prizes and Recent Winners For 2014

2014 already has winners in Israel, Virginia and Kentucky!  More early drawings coming in the weeks ahead.  An updated prize report follows:

February 24, 2014 by John A

26 Reasons to Love Sailing

Alistair Murray, CEO of marine hardware manufacturer Ronstan, recently sent out a company newsletter including a list of about 26 reasons to love sailing.  We'd have to agree with every one of them.  If you have your own add them in the comment section below.  Alistair's list:

So, what is great about sailing?

My top 26 (or so!):

February 10, 2014 by John A

Good Memories - Encinal Yacht Club Summer Sailstice 2001

How do traditions get started?  Way back in 2001 we floated the idea of a global sailing celebration and about 200 people signed up for what was the very first Summer Sailstice.  This mostly included 'friends and family' who just liked the idea of a virtual sailing get-together.  This spawned one of the first group gatherings when friends at the Encinal Yacht Club in Alameda gathered in the Oakland estuary to toast sailing in their inflatable tenders.

February 9, 2014 by John A

Are We Asking Too Much From Junior Programs?

In the recent Scuttlebutt Sailing newsletter #4005, January 22, Geoffrey Emanuel wrote some excellent suggestions for changes needed in many junior sailing programs. However, I think the problem may be deeper and can’t completely be addressed within programs. Go to any junior sailing dock and it’s hard to see anything wrong.

January 25, 2014 by John A

'You don't need a weatherman...' Bob Dylan

In 'Subterranean Homesick Blues' Bob Dylan sang, 'You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows' and today that's more true than ever.  And, since sailors have an almost endless fascination with the wind, we thought you'd like to see one of the coolest wind websites we've seen.  Click on the image below and you'll see the essentially real-time graphic display of current wind anywhere in the world. 

January 21, 2014 by John A

OSD = OSSD, Ocean (Sailor) Sampling Day

Any chance you'll be sailing in the icy reaches of the North Atlantic on Summer Sailstice 2014?  Or Chesapeake Bay? Or the Marshall Islands?  Or anywhere on the salty waters of this globe? The photo shows test samples at Palmer Station, Antartica on the Southern hemisphere summer solstice of 2013 and scientists are looking for similar ocean samples on the summer solstice in June 2014.

December 27, 2013 by John A
Sailstice Tales

NorCal Sailing Sailstice Report from San Francisco Bay

NorCal Sailing has been covering the San Francisco Bay waterfront online for several years and brings us this story from the racing on San Francisco Bay to the boatbuilding at the Encinal Yacht Club:

December 27, 2013 by John A

Winter/Summer Solstice 2013

Our December 21, winter solstice newsletter brought several responses from across the US where sailing continues despite the shortest day of the year.  In fact, since the solstice was on a Saturday, like it will be in June, many sailors were out on the water.

December 26, 2013 by John A

2013 Winter Solstice Newsletter

The event map has been cleared of 2013 events and is now open to post your 2014 Event/Sailing Plans.  Yes, we know it's pretty far in advance to know exactly how you'll be celebrating sailing in June 21, 2014 but, hey, like all plans you can change them later as they develop.  But today's the winter solstice - a great time to be sailing if you're in the Southern Hemisphere and a great time to be planning to sail if you're in the North.

December 21, 2013 by John A

"A day without sunshine is like, you know, night."

So says Steve Martin. It's not quite night in the Northern Hemisphere (unless you're in Sweden, Norway, Alaska or a few other places) but it is dark.  But that all changes as the Sun hits the Tropic of Capricorn at 23 degrees, 27 minutes South on December 21st.  For many of us these are the chlly months where we're trying to hang on to whatever sun we can.

December 15, 2013 by John A

There Are A Lot Of Ways To Sail On Summer Sailstice

One of the great challenges and opportunities for sailing is connecting with the kind of sailing you enjoy most.  Just have a look at a sample of they types of sailing folks are doing on Summer Sailstice:

December 15, 2013 by John A

New Ideas for Summer Sailstice 2014

Every year we add new stories from Summer Sailstice celebrations around the world.  They all add up to a menu of ideas for how you might want to celebrate with you club, class and friends locally.  Beyond Summer Sailstice races, cruises and rallies we've seen things such as:

December 15, 2013 by John A

27' Sailboat - Ocean view and other benefits - $5000 (Marina Del Rey)

Someone should buy this guy's boat!  Just because he wrote it,because he says it better and because he explains why you should get off the 405 and onto the water.  Or out of the mall and on the water.  Or just get out on the water - with this Catalina 27.  If you want to act fast and read this on the Craig's list listing go here now: 

December 12, 2013 by John A

Can Sailing Save the World?

Just maybe.  Reading the following from Elaina Breen, who just crewed aboard 'Henri Lloyd' in the Rio to Cape Town, South Africa leg of the Clipper Round the World Race, you get some insights on how and why individuals put their ego aside to survive and succeed.  Something sailing can teaches all sailors on a crewed sailing adventure. 

November 26, 2013 by John A
Featured Events, Sailstice Tales, News

Summer Sailstice in the BVI's

Join Bob Diamond of Spinnaker Sailing in Redwood City for this annual trip to the BVI's.  Bob has been a longtime supporter of Summer Sailstice and we are thrilled that he will be spending the holiday on holiday in one of the best sailing destinations in the world!  If you are looking for a way to take your Summer Sailstice to the next level I would recommend finding out more information from Bob! 

November 17, 2013 by Abby
Sailstice Tales, News

Sailing on the Chesapeake Bay

Tony, who owns a Tartan 37 in Annapolis Maryland, was the winner of the Lightening master prize from Forespar!  Pretty good prize for his location.  He shared this great video of sailing on the Sailstice!  

November 15, 2013 by Abby
Prizes, Sailstice Tales, News

Footloose Winner 2013

We have awarded the Grand Prize of $5000 certificate for a charter in the BVI's from Footloose! Jose was the winner of this prize and he took the time to tell us about his sailing story:

What kind of boat do you sail?

November 11, 2013 by Abby

Rozalia Project and American Promise

One of the great things about Summer Sailstice is connecting with sailors doing great things for both sailing and the world's oceans.   

November 9, 2013 by John A

Where Sailing Comes First

It's a simple 'mantra' but it's one we love.  And it's true for Summer Sailstice.  Over the years people have suggested Summer Sailstice would be a much better event if we made it a 'boatstice' - you know an event that is for all boats, i.e. powerboats too. Now it's nothing against power boats - they start races, tow home sailors, rescue people and can be tons of fun.  Of course, it's a reciprocal arrangement, sailors do the same powerboaters and it's a code of the sea.

November 8, 2013 by John A

Clipper Racers in Southern Hemisphere

The twelve yachts competing in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race headed out of Table Bay the other day to start a 4,700 mile Southern Ocean sleigh ride to Albany, Western Australia. The new, matched 70 foot ocean racers are headed deep into the Indian Ocean and are sailing these Southern Latitudes as the local Summer Sailstice approaches on December 21.  

November 6, 2013 by John A

Share the Bay: Sharkfest Swim on June 21, 2014

Are these guys crazy?  Sailing San Francisco Bay can be tough enough but swimming across the entrance of the Bay, under the Golden Gate Bridge would be very challenging. For Summer Sailstice 2014 sailors will be sharing the Bay with swimmers doing just that.

October 31, 2013 by John A
Sailing Inspiration, Sailstice Tales, News

No really, is this a scam?

I love awarding the prizes for Sailstice.  I get a huge mix of responses.  Some from doubters:

I've never won anything before...I thought it was spam!  What do I need to do? ..........Tony

no, somehow I missed this!  .......... Now, Abby, are we sure this ins't some kind of scam? :-).............Kris

Some from people excited to have won something: 

October 20, 2013 by Abby

Weta Sailor Bruce Fleming SoCal and NoCal Winner

Weta Summer Sailstice organizer in SoCal managed to win himself an Easy Stow fender when he signed up for Summer Sailstice.  At the end of the summer, during the America's Cup on San Francisco Bay, he traveled North to race at Richmond Yacht Club in the Weta West Coast Championships.  He kept up his prize winning ways picking up a 3rd in a fleet of 14 Wetas.  Keep it up Bruce.  

October 16, 2013 by John A
Sailstice Tales, News

Ocean Grafix helps Sailstice sailors navigate

We awarded 3 charts to Summer Sailstice sailors;

Congratulations to Collenne who is moving her boat Mariah to Holland, MI from the Chesapeake. Her mast has been taken down and the 18-wheeler arrives next week. We'll be sailing Lake MI and possibly other of the Great Lakes, she will now have a new chart to get to use when exploring new waters! 

October 15, 2013 by Abby

Win A 34th America's Cup Hat

We've just picked up some 34th America's Cup sailing gear and want to offer it to some first time Summer Sailstice participants.  We're just starting to plan ahead for Summer Sailstice 2014 which happens to fall right on the solstice - Saturday, June 21st!!  If you want to put Summer Sailstice on your calendar and sign up today, we'll award you a 34th America's Cup hat!

October 7, 2013 by John A
Sailstice Tales, News

Spiroll Rope Protector Winner Tales

We awarded 12 pairs of Spiroll Rope Protectors to boat owners and got some great pics and stories back:

Mark from Michigan shared pictures of his Camper & Nicholson 58 Ketch, 36 tons displacement.  Photo on Sailstice is ROXY visiting at the Muskegon Yacht Club; Muskegon Lake; Michigan.  Muskegon Lake is one of many along the West Michigan shore that connect with Lake Michigan.  She looks like a beautiful boat that can handle any condition Lake Michigan can throw at her! 

October 7, 2013 by Abby

Kiting, Foiling, Sailing?

What we call sailing continues to expand.  There was a day when a dhow on the Nile was the only sailboat on the planet.  How that's changed!  The South Pacific was populated by Polynesians sailing outrigger multihulls.  Now, thousands of years later, the vision of sailing continues to evolve.

October 2, 2013 by John A

AC Prize On The Way

Believe it or not prizes continue to be sent out after the 2013 Summer Sailstice.  Summer sailing always seems to slow the process and an active summer of America's Cup racing on our homeport of San Franciso Bay didn't help but even now, with the America's Cup drama continuing to unfold, we're sending more prizes out the door.  And what better prizes to be sending now than more AC goodies.  

September 22, 2013 by John A

A Sailor's Fall Equinox

Packing up or heading South?  Or shifting gears?  September 22 is the fall equinox and for us that means time to shift gears on the sailing scene.  The sun is right over the equator today and and tomorrow it will be shifting its sunny rays towards Southern Hemisphere sailors.   Lucky them.  Sailors in the Northern Hemisphere need to think about either putting boats away or hustling South to some warmer climes.

September 22, 2013 by John A

Americas Cup Prizes Awarded

The Americas Cup has been happening right here in the home waters of Summer Sailstice and it has been exciting to watch thes boats fly around the bay!  We were so pleased to have formed a partnership with the Americas Cup and get some great Americas Cup prizes including a backpack, waterbottles, fleece jackets, polos and most importantly lots of Americas Cup approved chocolates!

September 18, 2013 by Abby