It looks like we can expect a break in the rain by tomorrow - please join us at the After Race Party for the Lake Monona Sailing Club, which has races every Wednesday night and Saturday afternoon. We will be hosting a party for the Mendota Yacht Club, Lake Monona Sailing Club, Madison Youth Sailing Foundation, and their guests this Saturday at ~ 4:00 on our lawn, after the scheduled 2:00 race. This party has some special significance for us—and perhaps for you—as we are working hard to help the Madison Youth Sailing Foundation to launch a new X sailing clinic for kids this summer on Lake Monona, to complement the Opti program on Mendota, and will have a few of the boats here to display and take out for a spin.
Perhaps college is a long way off for your family, but I grew up sailing this same boat on Lake Mendota, and still recall my very first college recruiting letter: the University of Hawaii wanted me to sail for their team. It is a reminder that sailing is a not just a kids’ or college sport, but lifelong, which one can do at any age, whether recreationally or competitively, and which teaches a huge amount of independence, physics, teamwork and camaraderie, as well as an awareness of the world and weather around us.
Already, more than 150 kids a summer are participating in the Madison Youth Sailing Foundation’s (MYSF) Optimist classes each summer, held on Lake Mendota near Warner Park: MYSF
Please check out their web site. The “Opti’s” are the smaller boats for 1-2 younger kids, under close supervision, and this has been very successful. We will have at least one of these on display and ready to go.
However, as you will see on the home page, “X-boats are here!” This is a larger, very stable and forgiving sailboat, which is usually raced by two children, up to age 16, but can accommodate an entire family, as well. Thus, it is an excellent platform for learning, as well as socializing, meeting friends, crossing the lake, or spending a family afternoon on the water. It is also very common, durable, and the primary junior training boat of the Inland Lake Yachting Association: ILYA Class X-Boat
The X is the perfect step up for kids who are (literally) outgrowing the Opti, and the plan this summer is for the inaugural cohort of older kids to participate in a 2-week clinic (Mon - Thursday) beginning on June 29th. It will be run by the MYSF’s certified US Sailing Instructors, and will be held at our house. This will be followed by a fully supported trip to the ILYA X regatta on Pewaukee Lake (see the ILYA site for more details.) Thus, this weekend’s party will provide a little preview of the fun.
Please stop by to see or sail the boats (all ages OK!) or just to say hi and have a snack, a drink, a brat, and a light meal. Even if your kids are too young for the X this year, they may be interested in the Opti or X Program in the future!
Members of the Lake Monona Sailing Club, Mendota Yacht Club, and Madison Youth Sailing Foundation will be there, and you’re welcome to bring your own guests!
We hope to see you! Look for the sign.
4627 Tonyawatha Trail, Monona
(608) 556-0602 (Parker)
If you come by boat:
Pier B 1228, look for the red and white tent.
Whether or not you can make it tomorrow, please feel free to call or write with any questions or for more information.
Parker and Jet Waller
Two family images: this is the same X in 1983 and 2013 - once on Mendota, and later on Monona. In between, it was sailed and enjoyed by many kids, adults, and families between Madison and Oshkosh!
We hope you will join us on the water one day soon, and help to carry on this tradition of sharing our lakes and breezes with the next generation.