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How to Hold a BURP in a Foreign Port. It's easy!

Rob Murray

Avant
Beneteau First 44.5 Sloop
November 22nd, 2016

Now that Fall is here, and the Mexico contingent of BCA’s Currently Cruising members is returning to the sunny Mexican shores, this article, submitted by Rob Murray a while back, comes in very handy! So, read carefully and host as many BURPS as you can, and please send a recount of the fun time to Currents.

Rob’s Guide to Hosting a BURP

Bluewater Cruising Association (BCA) members offshore are often faced with bleak social schedules. Endless potlucks, coffee klatches, happy hours, beach combing, domino games, snorkeling, dinghy explorations, sailing azure waters in gentle breezes, hikes ashore and other happy events, but no BCA “unofficial” rendezvous or BURPS (Bluewater Unofficial Rendezvous Places). Without the ‘adult supervision’ of an active watch to plan and execute the events, these great events just don’t seem to happen.

But there is a cure. You can take the initiative and make it happen. As they say in the Nike ads, ‘Just do it!’.

Avant has ‘hosted’ BURPS in Guaymas, La Paz, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta. We may hold the club record for hosting BURPS in Mexico. We ‘hosted’ a BURP in La Paz at the beginning of February, and had over 20 folks attend.

It’s really easy!

In any port where there is a cruisers radio net, just announce a BURP. Do it for at least three days in advance to make sure you get on people’s calendars and all local BCA members have a chance to hear about it. Pick a location (usually a local bar, restaurant or cruisers lounge), a date and time, and simply let people know and they will show up. It’s magic! And because you are the ‘host’ you can guarantee the event will be on a convenient date and time, and at a venue you like!

Anchorage in La Paz

Anchorage in La Paz

The day of the event as ‘host’, try to show up a little early (or at least on time), and bring a BCA burgee to wave around as a rallying point. There is no need for an agenda, speeches, door prizes, introductions, presentations, etc. It’s just a BURP. Optionally, you can post the event and/or pictures of the event on the BCA Facebook page (I suggest you do this simply to make those members in cold dark places jealous).

To ease the planning of your first BURP, here’s a radio script you can use to announce your BURP:

This is {your name} on {boat name}. For members of all chapters of Canada’s Bluewater Cruising Association in {port name} there will be a Bluewater Cruising Association rendezvous at {location name} at {time} on {day of the week}, {date}. All members, past, present and prospective are welcome. Please plan to attend. {boat name} out.

Every time we have ‘hosted’ a BURP, those attending have thanked us and said ‘we should do this more often’. We have always been surprised by the number of members in port too, often having 20-30 people attend, representing 10-15 boats.

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