Alberg 30 Association Seminars

Each February, The Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 Association holds a series of four seminars, one on each Saturday in February. There's a seminar on racing, one on cruising, another on maintenance and a final catch-all category called "potpourri" These seminars, in addition to discussing the upcoming racing and cruising schedules, are a great vehicle for sharing information on all aspects of boat ownership.

Who could forget Karl Gerhard's lesson on spinnaker handling. With a plywood "boat", a large fan and a real miniature spinnaker, he taught the basics of using this sail to novice racers and cruisers who didn't know what to do with this sail that came with their boat. I think some of the experienced racers learned a trick or two, too.

In the above picture, Ward Rosenberry is giving an entertaining and informative talk on cruising up to Maine. As you can see, there was a big audience for this mix of practical advice and hilarious anecdotes.

The biggest audiences always seem to be for the maintenance seminar. It's not unusual for people to drive long distances, say from Boston, to learn more about the care and feeding of their boats. There are some real experts in the association, and they're more than willing to share their wisdom. As this seminar generally concentrates on things that can go wrong, it can be pretty scary. People have come away thinking that their boat might sink at any minute. Fortunately, that's not the case (if you've kept up with a few basic items), and these boats are very sturdy and reliable.

You'll find some pictures, and associated information, from various Maintenance Seminars in the maintenance section.

There's one other aspect of these seminars. The association's annual dinner is in January and the sailing schedule doesn't start until late April. The seminars provide an excuse to get together and spend time with old friends (and meet a few new ones) in the Winter doldrums. Consequently, there's always an "aftergathering," generally at someone's home, for less focused discussion over food and drink.

Cruising the Chesapeake: A Gunkholer's Guide cover Cruising the Chesapeake: A Gunkholer's Guide 4th Edition

My favorite Chesapeake Bay guidebook. While it mentions marinas, it concentrates on anchorages—the kind of places I prefer to spend my time. And in addition to listing shore facilities, it rates each location for Beauty/Interest and Protection. This is the guide you need to really cruise the Chesapeake Bay—a smorgasbord of small creeks and coves.

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