Gather 'n Gab Details

Hello CHESSSmates!

I realize that the pandemic disruptions have caused us to rush the Gather 'n Gab with short notice but I hope you'll try to join us. We already have 8-10 boats committed to attending. This email contains the critical details. Also, keep watching the website front page for updates.

Who: Members in good standing and the "shorthanding curious." (skippers interested in CHESSS)

What: 2nd Annual Gather 'n Gab- Racing start clinic and Spring General Meeting Raft-up

Where: Buoy GC1 off Hackett's Point, Annapolis

When: Saturday, June 6th at HIGH NOON

Why: The racing start clinic is meant to help reluctant racing skippers practice maneuvering their boats behind the starting line during the starting sequence, and get accustomed to hitting the line at full speed, on time, in the optimal position in a controlled environment.

Skippers will: Check in with the RC boat upon arrival at NOON in the vicinity of GC1 off Hackett's Point, Annapolis. The RC boat will most likely be a trawler. Flag LIMA will be flying. Tune to VHF 68. After each start, sail out enough to be safe and clear and circle back to return well behind the starting line in preparation for the next start. DO NOT SAIL BACK ACROSS THE STARTING LINE.

Race Committee will: Set an upwind starting line. The first couple of starts will have cues over the VHF as well as standard horn and flag signals. The next couple of starts will not have the VHF cues, so that skippers can become accustomed to the sequence with horn and flag signals only. If we have enough boats, we will break the group into 2 "classes." The RC will inform you over VHF which class you are in.

Remember: According to the Racing Rules of Sailing, in real life, FLAG SIGNALS trump all other signals. The Race Committee is NOT obligated to give VHF cues. Horns and signal guns fail. All that's left is the flags.

Here is a link to a refresher on the starting sequence:

Finally: After everyone has had their fill of practice starts, the fleet will travel a short way up Mill Creek for the raft-up.

CoVid Raft-Up Restrictions: Our insurance carrier has all sorts of restrictions and jargon thanks to the pandemic. Aside from the legal issues, we genuinely do not want anyone to get sick. We request that all skippers remain on their own vessels at the raft-up as much as possible. If there is an audibility issue, we can allow a member to move closer by crossing boats provided that masks are worn and 6 feet of distance is maintained. PLEASE provision for yourselves! Bring ample water or beverages for yourselves as well as food. The board did not feel comfortable risking contamination by providing food or beverages. For this, we profoundly apologize.

Questions? Email me at:


Rich Acuti

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