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The Official Magazine of the Bluewater Cruising Association

Thanksgiving Rendezvous 2017

Fiona and Mike Gregory

Hunter, 49 Sloop
November 28th, 2017

The 2017 BCA Thanksgiving Rendezvous was held at Thetis Island Marina from October 7 thru 9, 2017.  We had 20 boats (plus a few virtual boats) and 48 sailors attending from Calgary, Victoria, Vancouver, Nanaimo and ports in-between.

  • Lolani
  • La Vie Jolie
  • Mischief
  • Segue II
  • Heron
  • Ostara
  • Loki II
  • Solstice Tide
  • Toketie
  • Gypsy Lady
  • Inceptus
  • Ragtime
  • Magpie
  • Celestina
  • Stray Cat
  • Camdeboo
  • Tillikum
  • Freedom
  • Blue Rose
  • Kaimana
From L to R: Katharine Ackerman and Karen Jensen, Loki II; Heather Marshall, Mischief; Phoebe Gilday, Heron; Heidi Dandurand, La Vie Jolie. MIA: Yvonne Harwood, Ostara.

From L to R: Katharine Ackerman and Karen Jensen, Loki II; Heather Marshall, Mischief; Phoebe Gilday, Heron; Heidi Dandurand, La Vie Jolie. MIA: Yvonne Harwood, Ostara.

Five (25%) of the boats were skippered by women, setting a new record for BCA!  And as usual, there were a few last minute cancellations as the wind conditions on the Georgia Strait hindered some crossings from the mainland on Friday.

Saturday morning dawned cool but dry for the most part, so participation in the scheduled activities was no issue.  RCM-SAR from Ladysmith arrived around 1300h, with their new rescue boat, to give us a brief hands-on safety presentation focusing on Man Overboard Drills.

Royal Canadian Marine Search & Rescue vessel

The event was well received, with many of the BCA members taking an active part in the presentation.

RCM-SAR volunteers demonstrate MOB retrieval

Thanks again to the Ladysmith RCM-SAR unit for their contribution to our Rendezvous.  They are more than happy to provide instruction/training to any area boating group – simply reach out and if they can accommodate they will.

Thanks to Ladysmith RCM-SAR!

Kudos to the Thetis Island Marina – their venue seems to fit our Rendezvous perfectly.  Lots of dock and anchoring space, although most boats do dock as weather conditions cannot always be relied on. Best of all: the Rendezvous rate was $1.10 per foot (regular rate being $1.50 that weekend!). The Marina handles the registration and payment for the turkey supper that they supply for the group, and the price includes tax/tip/meal all in one ticket, which saves them and us a lot of extra accounting.  As well they managed to accommodate our free drink tickets for each registrant, with no issues at the bar or on the final invoice.

Thetis Island Marina docks

The meeting room, although a squeeze for 50 people, helps make our pot luck and turkey dinners cozy and very social.  But as boaters, we are used to “close quarters”!  New items that can be incorporated for next year, weather permitting, include a fire pit in the pavilion as well as BBQ.

Our meeting / dining / hang-out room at Thetis Island Marina

New this year was a Sunday afternoon scavenger hunt, which was well received, although I think next year, if it continues, will have to be much harder.  I anticipated at least one hour for completion and some teams blew through the questions in 40 minutes.  We had 6 teams participating and I think everyone had a good time and boy, are we a competitive group.

Keen participants getting scavenger hunt instructions from Fiona

Also new this year was an Exchange Corner, where you posted on the bulletin board in the meeting room if you had any items for sale, and if someone was interested they could contact you at your boat to purchase and/or view.  This eliminated the need for sitting with your items while you displayed them for sale.

The Members Boat Tour was fantastic – many boats signed up and most of Saturday afternoon was spent seeing and hearing about how our fellow BCA members set up their boats. Thanks to everyone who participated; I can’t say enough about how enjoyable it was to see other boats and meet everyone.  The camaraderie was great.

Open boat visits with old friends

Saturday Pot Luck Dinner was very good – next year we will make sure we set up the room before we start to serve the food!!

Saturday pot luck dinner

The Saturday night presentations were outstanding.  Thanks to Anne Woodson and Heather Marshall.  Anne did a quick presentation on her trip to Haida Gwaii before the quake, which closed the Haida Hot Springs. The pictures were fantastic – thanks Anne.  Heather showed us the photos of the devastation from Hurricane Irma, which slammed into the BVI’s in September 2017.  Heather’s boat Sea Otter was unfortunately moored in the BVI’s when the storm hit, and although she was severely damaged, did manage to weather the storm much better than many others – thanks again Heather for sharing.

Of course it goes without saying that the Turkey Dinner on Sunday night was great.  There was lots of food and it was all good.  And to end the evening, Tim and Pam hosted a sing-along aboard Tillikum for those who wished to participate.  Who knew that we had such exceptional singers among the group – Pam, Phoebe and Jennifer!!!

Happy scavenger hunt winners: “The Upper Spreaders”

We have reserved our space for 2018 with Thetis Island Marina for October 5-8, 2018.  Hope to see you there.  If you have any suggestions or comments, please send me an email.

Thank You

Many thanks to all who participated in making the Calgary Chapter’s Annual Thanksgiving Rendezvous a success.  A special thanks to our prize sponsors this year; we appreciate your support for BCA.

Weekend Photo Album

More photographs from the Thanksgiving Rendezvous can be found here.  Enjoy!




  1. Jennifer Handley says:

    Thanks for a great weekend! It was so much fun.

  2. Michael Stask says:

    Great article!! Looking forward to next year.

    1. Fiona Gregory says:

      We enjoyed meeting you and Phoebe and definitely hope to see you again next year. Merry Christmas to you both.

  3. Sue Chapman says:

    thank yiu for an inspiring article! maybe next year. Cliff & Sue, SV. Catherine J

  4. Katherine Ackerman says:

    Karen and I (Loki) had a fantastic time, thank you for your hard work. We have marked our calendars for next year. We had a fun trip back to SSI “racing” Phoebe and Michael on Heron. We are so happy that we joined this group.

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