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The Official Magazine of the Bluewater Cruising Association

Thanksgiving Weekend with BCA

Fiona and Mike Gregory

Hunter, 49 Sloop
October 29th, 2018

Many thanks to all who helped make the annual BCA Thanksgiving Rendezvous a success. Sponsored and organized by the Calgary Chapter, this was the third and final BCA Rendezvous of 2018.

Twenty-four boats and 51 sailors were in attendance, and all three chapters were well represented.  Special thanks to our prize sponsors this year:

The weekend was beautiful and sunny on Saturday;  liquid sunshine was “enjoyed” on both Sunday and Monday. However, the rainy weather did not dampen spirits and a good time was had by all.

Calgary Chapter Vice Commodore, Cathy Norrie, throwing a line in preparation for the boat turning exercise

A spontaneous activity on Friday afternoon of turning boats around in their slips – three in total, of varying lengths and maneuverability – got the weekend off to a good start.

Knot tying with Dick Towson

This was followed on Saturday by a knot tying session with Dick Towson, who gladly volunteered to show us some  difficult knots. We were tied up in knots by the time the session was over.

Exploring Thetis Island

The good weather on Saturday also allowed for lots of onshore exploration.  Small groups of walkers headed off in all directions on foot or on bicycles to check out the island, including a fairly recently developed trail that meandered through nearby woods and pastureland before leading back to its starting point.

Nine model boats ready for competition

Back by popular demand this year was the the model boat contest aka the “Boat Building from Garbage and Race Competition.” It was won handily by Barbara Erickson and Lionel Dobson, who made their sail from pieces of reed they wove into a sail, just like those that many BCA members have seen in the South Pacific. Dee Logan and her teammates, Valerie Gunn and Guy Gauvin, took prizes for the most inventive boat, the largest boat and the boat using the most scavenged items. Nine boats participated in the race, among them a Chinese junk, a Trojan Horse, a Pontoon Boat, a Mouldy Barge, and Floating Dishpan. Based on its resurgent popularity, this event will likely continue at future October Rendezvous. Thanks so much to Chris Stask for organizing the event – next year you will be provided with more notice!

The winners! Guy Gauvin, Dee Logan and Valerie Gunn; and Barbara Erickson and Lionel Dobson

This year the marina had their own Saturday night entertainment, which was enjoyed by a few of the BCA Rendezvous attendees. In light of that, our usual evening presentation was held on Sunday, after a traditional turkey supper with all the trimmings and pumpkin pie for dessert. Of course, it goes without saying that Thanksgiving Dinner was great.

Jim and Andrea’s boat, Island Prism, approaching Moorea

The presentation was outstanding, thanks to Jim Shortreed and his wife, Andrea England, who spoke about their trip across the Pacific, around Australia and New Zealand, to Thailand and back the wrong way (as Jim put it) across the Pacific to BC. It was a great presentation and Andrea’s fantastic art work added so much to it. If you were unable to attend the Rendezvous, Jim and Andrea will be presenting to the VI Chapter at their Victoria club night in February – this is a must-see presentation.

Saturday pot luck dinner

Kudos to Thetis Island Marina and their new owners – the venue accommodated BCA members and boats very well. The meeting room was a squeeze for our Saturday Pot Luck, but the pleasant evening weather enabled some spillage outside onto the deck. We were the marina’s sole guests on Sunday evening, which meant lots more room for us. Despite the poor weather outside, we were toasty warm and well taken care of.

Mark your calendar; the Calgary Chapter has already reserved the marina for the 2019 Thanksgiving Rendezvous (October 12-14, 2019).  Please reach out to the Calgary Rendezvous Watchkeeper if you have any comments or suggestions for next year; we hope to see you there!

Thanks to all the photographers who shared their pictures of this fun weekend;  the photo album of the weekend highlights can be found here.




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