Saturday and Sunday, April 11-12, sailors with disabilities in Martin 16 sailboats will race 8 nautical miles to Chula Vista and back in the Challenged Sailors San Diego 2015 Dash to Chula Vista hosted by Chula Vista Yacht Club.
The following weekend, April 18-19 will see the Martin 16s race to Glorietta Bay and back in the Kyle C. McArthur Memorial Regatta at Coronado Yacht Club.
Each regatta will start near the east end of Harbor Island at 12:00pm on Saturday. The return leg from Chula Vista will start at 12:00pm on Sunday (April 12) and from Coronado at 1:00pm on Sunday (April 19).
At each regatta there will be a BBQ at the host yacht club after the first race on Saturday and a party and awards presentation at Sunroad Resort Marina on Harbor Island after the return race on Sunday (approximately 3:00-5:00pm).
“These are important events because of the camaraderie they foster within the group but also to get the word out to the community about this program and what it offers. Learning from each other and improving our skills allows us to become better sailors and to apply those abilities to our day to day lives. It’s about fun, friendship and the volunteers who make it all possible.” Colin Smith
At both regattas there will be a raffle and silent auction at the after-race party to help raise funds to purchase new sails for the Martin 16s. Donations of gift certificates or other auctionable items are being solicited from the community and would be most welcome, as would participation in the raffles and silent auctions.
About Kyle C. McArthur:
LTJG Kyle C. McArthur was born and raised in Coronado, CA. An avid sailor and all-around athlete, he was named one of the top senior athletes at Coronado High School by the Coronado Rotary Club. He attended the United States Naval Academy where he was a member of the sailing and lacrosse teams. After graduating from the Naval Academy, McArthur trained as a Naval Aviator and carrier qualified in a T-45 on the USS George W. Bush. A short time later, on June 16, 2013, he died as a result of an automobile accident.
About Challenged Sailors San Diego:
Challenged Sailors San Diego (CSSD) is a non-profit (501(c)(3) status pending), all volunteer driven program whose mission is to provide therapeutic and recreational adaptive sailing opportunities for people with disabilities to enhance their dignity, well being, and independence. CSSD has a fleet of eight Martin 16 sailboats specifically designed for adaptive sailing. CSSD serves participants of all ages and most disabilities can be accommodated in the program. All experience levels (from none to advanced) are welcome. See www.challengedsailors.org for further details.
From the Frequently Asked Questions on the website (http://www.challengedsailors.org/faqs.html):
Q: Who are we?
A: Challenged Sailors San Diego was founded by a group of disabled sailors and volunteers who have been involved in adaptive sailing for many years. The leadership includes disabled sailors in key roles including our president (amputee/cancer survivor), our secretary (multiple sclerosis), scheduler (deaf), communications (blind), among others. Our key volunteers include professional maritime captains, sailing instructors, experienced boat owners and many others. Everyone in the organization knows the joy of sailing and of sharing this joy with others.
Q: Isn’t there another organization like this in San Diego?
A: Challenged America (a program of the Disabled Businesspersons Association) has been a program in San Diego for many years. Recently, Challenged America ended their small boat program and a group of volunteers has acquired a fleet of 8 Martin 16 sailboats. This new group has formed Challenged Sailors San Diego.
Q: Are the two organizations related in any way?
A: No. While many volunteers previously participated in Challenged America, there are no legal, financial, or operational ties between the organizations.