07 Jul 2014

Letter from the Commodore

Well we finally made it. Summer! Enjoy it while you can as it is fleeting. As I write this note at least half the membership is out somewhere on the lake and life has resumed its normal July rhythm of long hot days and equally warm nights.

I wanted to update you on a number of initiatives that have been taking place since the Annual General Meeting in May. Of course the highlight of the period was the 50th Anniversary celebrations on June 7th during what was a perfect weather day. The sight of 175 members and former members gathered under the big tent, grounds perfectly trimmed, trees washed in lighting while all present enjoyed a fine meal together was truly memorable. A tremendous amount of volunteer effort went into the preparation of this event with members pitching-in as required. Hats off to the Gala Organizing Committee for all their efforts and to so many members for helping make this event a huge success!

Your Board of Directors has been busy following up on a number of infrastructure issues since the SGM. The TYC water system has been one of the primary focus items. As you know from the VC presentation, our water challenges are on many fronts including our river water system, well water system, water treatment and distribution/water pressure. A small discovery committee has been charged with the orderly assessment and renewal of the water infrastructure. Progress is happening. The committee met with MacLellan Water Systems of Kingston late last month, the firm that has been doing our water testing for years. They are experienced commercial contractors and have great local knowledge of larger scale operations like our Club. Shortly, they will be supplying us with some concrete recommendations on pump capacities and configurations etc. and provide a proper path to remedial action that we can take to address our issues. They have already tested our well capacity, which is at the heart of our water supply, and their report suggests that we have more than adequate, good quality well water capacity. This
is excellent news. Of interest to all members is the learning that we will be able to use river water, deemed potable following treatment via infra-red interface, as our water source for showers/washrooms. This will meet local health codes. This is particularly good news as it means we can separate the ‘house’ water supply needs (washrooms, kitchen, laundry, etc) from the potable water needs of the dock system and the normal water needs for the gardens etc. It also means that we can have our entire water system readied in time for the building renovation which will be a real asset.

With MacLellan’s advice, we will address this summer through local plumbing contractors and member expertise a reconfiguration of our water system. The Board is fully aware of the importance of getting this right. I will let you know of progress. I thank you for your patience.

At the SGM, the VC touched on Trident developing a Marketing Plan to help us create opportunities to promote our Club regionally and hopefully increase our membership base. Both Phil Gertler and Gilles Archambault have been exploring options and I am pleased to note that we have been successful on a few fronts getting TYC and its story out in the public domain. First, we were successful in getting some local Gananoque/Kingston mention via radio prior to our June 7th Gala event. A press release had been prepared at the time, and of interest GAM magazine picked it up and will be publishing a 2-page TYC story in an upcoming edition of the magazine complete with photographs. Given GAM’s circulation in the sailing community this is great notoriety for the Club at no cost. We will arrange to
have extra copies of the magazine available at the Club and the article posted on our website. We continue to look at other promotional options over the summer.

I am also pleased to report on a related marketing initiative. Our renewed TYC brochure, developed by the Communications Advisory Committee (Carole Gervais) is now ready and copies have been printed. This is a great marketing tool for TYC and I suggest every member take a few on board their vessels and share strategically as you meet potential new members in your travels around the lake. Finally, our new TYC website is undergoing some graphic treatment and the Committee is reviewing content prior to launch. More news on this later.

The TYC Building Renovation Project is still active. As you know, the membership
approved our adjustment in schedule to October 1 for Phases One (Washrooms) and Phase Two (Front Entrance) and the choice of J. L. Richards and Associates to help us manage the entire building project, pending their review of our existing concept and opinion on cost. The JLR team was on site in early June with their lead local architect and chief engineer to gather the necessary information for their initial
review. We had expected to receive the results of their work the last week of June, however, the Kingston-based lead architect left the firm at that time resulting in a delay in receipt of work. Our file is now under the management of JLR’s chief Ottawa-based architect. He has committed to deliver their report to us by mid-July.

Over the summer we will be addressing the tearing down of the east cottage at the top of the hill and assessing whether there is merit in moving the free-standing Panabode garage elsewhere on the property. We will keep you apprised of progress in these areas.

Before I leave infrastructure, we can expect the new vacuum pump-out equipment this month and RC Lee Gerig has an installation plan to execute this project in the near term. You will recall that this capital expense was approved by the membership at the SGM.

On the matter of membership, we are making slow but sure progress. We have secured three new members since the SGM, two this year and one beginning in 2015. We are pleased to report that Associate members Fred Lloyd and Dana Petrmichl will be returning to TYC with a Catalina 27 very shorty. Also in harbour is Ron Rose and Nancy Stableforth’s new SeaRay 380. Finally Jean Marcotte and Marie-Lise Delisle have returned to TYC with a Whitby 42. All good signs and congratulations to all! We are still actively speaking to other potential members at Treasure Island Marina, Britannia Yacht Club and Nepean Sailing Club to see if we can attract more boats to TYC.

The Board of Directors is meeting regularly over the summer and will be looking more closely at the Capital Plan process trying to prioritize and sort the various capital outlays that potentially face our Club over the next 5 to 10 years. More information on that work will be forthcoming.

Let’s not forget all of the important ‘fun’ events that are upcoming. The Kerr Bay raft up is around the corner (July 19-20), the Long Distance Cruise to Sackets
Harbour and Henderson Harbour starts August 2-4, followed immediately thereafter by the “Long, Long Distance Cruise” to points west (Oswego, Sodus, Little Sodus, etc.) Next big event is the Howe Island race August 23rd followed by the Final Fling September 06. Watch for email communiqués highlighting these events and other summer BBQ options from the Social Director and Fleet Captain.

Please do not hesitate to contact me or any member of the Board directly with any comments or criticisms. We appreciate the feedback.

I hope everyone continues to have a wonderful and safe summer sailing and cruising experience

Robert Toller