Thursday, April 30, 2009

$21M Coming to Chicago to Repair "Outer Harbor Structure"

Crain's Chicago Business Reported today that $21M in Stimulus dollars will be effecting the Chicago Harbor system. Designated as monies to repair the outer harbor structure, we can only guess that these funds are part of the greater 2016 Olympic project.

To See the Video

ISAF Publish Guidelines For Prevention Of Piracy

ISAF announced today the publication of Guidelines for yachts considering a passage through the Gulf of Aden, Yemeni and Somali waters.

In view of the recent escalation in piratical attacks in the area of the Gulf of Aden, Yemeni and Somali, and the consequent very high risk, the essential advice is not to enter this area. However a yacht which, despite this advice, decides on such a passage is recommended to make contact in advance with the naval authorities and will find in the document basic guidance for her transit. The Guidelines are a joint production of MSCHOA (Maritime Security Centre, Horn of Africa), and ISAF under the auspices of the ISAF International Regulations Commission.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Consumer confidence up for April

From Trade-Only

April, 28 2009, 09:32 AM

Consumers are feeling much more optimistic about the economy than they were just two months ago, according to the Consumer Confidence Index released today by The Conference Board.
The index had been hovering near historic lows since September and in February fell to its lowest level since its 1967 inception. The index posted a slight increase in March and improved considerably in April, according to today's report.
Read More

Friday, April 24, 2009

Over 45 Beneteau Sailboats to Compete in Sold Out 101st Race to Mackinac

One-Design Section start for the 36.7 fleet.

Over forty-five Beneteaus will be competing in the sold out 101st Running of the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac. The race departs from Chicago on July 18th. The largest group represented with be the First 36.7 that race One-Design with twenty entries. A couple of the 36.7's will be competing in the new double-handed division which makes its debut this year.

The next largest group is represented by the fourteen First 40.7's. Also racing one-design, this fleet always has a competitive run up the lake in this annual race. The 'sleeper boat' of the race will be the First 10R that has doubled it's number of participants. Four First 10R's will be competing in the 2009 event. Newcomers Rod Cohee and his 'Twisted Fish' as well as Dave and Kim Hoff and "Nirvana" will be joining the fun. There are another ten Beneteau's that are racing in open divisions and the cruising division ranging in size from 36' to 45'.

Stay tuned in the months to come as the race is less than 90 days away.

To see the list of participants in this year's race visit:

Thursday, April 23, 2009

101st Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac "Sold Out"

CHICAGO YACHT CLUB (April 23, 2009) -- Today, Chicago Yacht Club announced that it has reached its entry limit of 350 boats for the 2009 Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac, presented by Lands’ End Business Outfitters. 2009 marks the 101st running of 'the Mac,' the world's longest annual freshwater sailing distance race. The 101st Race will start off Chicago's lakefront on July 17th and 18th, 2009.
“We have received a terrific response to the 101st Race, and are working hard to give skippers and crews alike a world-class race this July,” Greg Miarecki, chair of the 2009 Mackinac Committee, commented. “Unfortunately, we will not be able to accommodate all sailors that would like to compete this year, but we hope they will consider joining us for a future Race,” Miarecki added.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

May Edition of Sailing World: Showcases First 36.7

As many of you get your May 2009 Issue of Sailing World magazine this week, you will find the First 36.7 One-Design class showcased on page 77 under their 1-Design of the month section. The section offers a breakdown of the class approved OD upgrades to tackle and rigging and referenced Harken Part numbers.

As the Fastest growing One-Design Class, the First 36.7 continues to grow on Lake Michigan with new members for the 2009 season. While many other manufacturers portray their offerings as a class one-design and struggle to get the critical mass for class starts, the Farr Designed First 36.7 is it. With over 400 boats sold in North America and 30 on Lake Michigan, the First 36.7 offers the perfect blend of class racer with the ability to cruise with family and friends.

The First 36.7 has a complete OD schedule that includes class sections in all the major regattas (COLORS, NOOD, MAC and Verve Cup). This year's North American Championship will also be within travelling distance of the area. It will be held at Bayview Yacht Club in Detroit, MI August 27-30, 2009. Visit the enclosed link for registration info.

For information on the First 36.7 and to see one at Karma Yacht Sales. visit.

To find out about the Lake Michigan Fleet and National One-Design Class.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Beneteau Attracts the Artistic Eye

Love for Sail

On certain nights, the California Yacht Club in Marina del Rey can feel like a gathering of the American Institute of Architects. There, out on the patio, is Frank Gehry with a couple of people from his office. At another table, Greg Lynn is knocking back a few beers after a race with the artist Casey Reas and some other fellow faculty members from the U.C.L.A. School of Arts and Architecture. Men who spend their days dreaming up monolithic buildings — or, in the case of the artist and sailor Charles Ray, 18-ton sculptures in solid machined steel — would seem to possess some fundamental attachment to terra firma. So what’s up with all this sailing? ‘‘A sailboat is the ideal microcosm for a self-sufficient dwelling,’’ says the architect David Hertz, perhaps hitting the nail on the head.

Ray, a Los Angeles-based conceptual artist, seems happiest when it’s just him and the open sea. ‘‘My dad bought us boats,’’ says Ray, who spent childhood summers on Lake Michigan. ‘‘I think he thought sailing was a wholesome way to spend time.’’ These days, Ray sails C-Squared, a custom Wyliecat 44 from the San Francisco designer Tom Wylie. (The name, Ray explains, refers to the speed of light, ‘‘but C is also for Charles and a pun on sea.’’) It makes you think of one of his sculptures, cool and smooth and almost entirely white — a pure archetype of a boat. And in fact, it’s an edition of one. Built for speed, it has a free-standing carbon-fiber mast that bends in the wind like a fishing rod and a wishbone boom that makes it look like a giant windsurfer; the square footage of the mainsail is larger than an average New York City one-bedroom apartment. ‘‘It freaks people out, which is why no one else was interested in buying it,’’ Ray says. The streamlined cockpit is designed for shedding water but not for comfort, and the head is in the middle of the cabin. ‘‘Women aren’t so crazy about it,’’ he adds. ‘‘But it’s a good boat for solo sailing.’’ Ray, who was the commodore of his club, P.S.S.A. (Pacific Singlehanded Sailing Association), admits that technically, solo sailing is illegal because you cannot keep a constant watch. ‘‘The danger is being hit or being washed overboard,’’ he says, bringing to mind the Dutch-born California artist Bas Jan Ader, who disappeared in 1975 after setting out to cross the Atlantic for one leg of a three-part conceptual project, ‘‘In Search of the Miraculous.’’ ‘‘As soon as you step into the water, you are part of the food chain, you’re part of the wilderness. That’s why I like solo sailing. You can be macho, but at least you can be macho on your own.’’

For Greg Lynn, on the other hand, sailing is above all a social pursuit. ‘‘I could have either recruited super-hot racers or come out with friends and teach them all how to sail,’’ he says, listing the architects Kivi Sotamaa and Heather Roberge among his regular crew. Lynn, whose studio is just down the block from Ray’s in Venice, Calif., captains Kraken, a Beneteau First 36.7 named for the sea monster celebrated in the poem by Alfred, Lord Tennyson and later thought to have been a giant squid. His daughter wanted him to name the boat Bubbles. ‘‘No one would take us seriously on the starting line with a name like that,’’ says Lynn, a dedicated racer. (His laid-back Southern California demeanor on land all but evaporates on the water.)

Lynn is currently designing the cabin for a friend’s 47-foot catamaran and putting together a book about sailboats for Rizzoli; he is into sailing as much for the materials as for the fun. He has integrated boat building into the curriculum for the classes he teaches at Yale, the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and at U.C.L.A., taking field trips to local shipyards. And, like Ray, he can quickly leave you scrambling for a lifeline when he starts talking about things like composite construction and Kevlar sails. ‘‘Architects and artists love that stuff — the rigging and the material culture of shell construction,’’ Lynn says. Some of that knowledge and enthusiasm was applied to the house that he designed for Jason and Jackilin Bloom. As it turns out, the contractor, Oliver Garrett, is also a sailor and has a boat identical to Lynn’s called By Design. ‘‘I’m always racing my nemesis!’’ Lynn says.

David Hertz also sees a material connection between sailing and his chosen profession. Hertz is salvaging cut-up boat hulls for a project in Nova Scotia. ‘‘We turn them upside down and use them for roofs,’’ he explains. The 44-foot ketch with teak decks and a spruce mast that Hertz is restoring has turned him into something of a wood fetishist. ‘‘People basically want Clorox bottles for boats,’’ he says. ‘‘All-fiberglass boats don’t have the emotional relationship to the water.’’

Frank Gehry might beg to differ. Gehry sails a fiberglass-hulled Beneteau First 44.7 named Foggy, a play on his initials. He bought the boat for his office, and some 30 of his current and former employees sail and race it. Gehry, who is currently designing a sailboat for a client in New York, started sailing in the ’50s when he was a student at the University of Southern California. ‘‘A bunch of guys in the architecture department were sailors,’’ he recalls. ‘‘They liked me, so they invited me to go with them.’’ His sailing pals had a 23-foot sloop but not a lot of money. ‘‘I bought the anchor,’’ Gehry says. ‘‘I think at the time it cost 20 bucks.’’ He couldn’t afford to buy his own boat until many years later, but he had caught the bug. ‘‘We used to go out in high winds; we were nuts like Greg is,’’ he says, referring to Lynn, a close friend and frequent sailing companion. ‘‘One day we were going out to the boat and we passed John Chamberlain,’’ the artist, ‘‘standing on a corner in Venice and brought him with us,’’ Gehry continues. ‘‘He was in a suit. He got soaked. He loved it and learned how to sail.’’

The geometry of sails has inspired some of Gehry’s most famous works. ‘‘I love the sails,’’ he says. ‘‘They make an architectural space. The Disney Hall is wing-in-wing.’’ But like the others’, Gehry’s affinity for sailing is more primal than professional: ‘‘There is a freedom about it, a purity about it. There is nothing like going out there and cutting the engine. It’s the one thing that quiets me down.’’ http://http//

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

45 Reasons to Learn How to Sail

How Peaceful is This? (Photo credit: Melanie Tisdale)

So the sun is shining today and you might be looking for something to distinguish 2009 for you. How about Sailing? Enclosed is a list we ran accross that provides some great reasons why as said best by John Edward Harris.

What are you waiting for?

45 Reasons To Learn How To Sail by John Edward Harris

Awhile ago I entered a contest that required me to list 45 reasons to learn to sail. Here is my list.

1. Learning to sail is safer for you than trial and error.
2. Learning to sail will lead you to greener recreation since sailing burns no fossil fuels.
3. Learning to sail is a great way for you to meet potential partners, either members of the opposite or same sex, or to take your current significant other on a great romantic getaway.
4. Learning to sail helps you keep mentally and physically fit.
5. Learning to sail will help you better appreciate Thomas Cahill’s Sailing the Wine Dark Sea.
6. Learning to sail can lead to a new lifelong passion.
7. Learning to sail could lead to new employment as the captain of a sail boat for hire.
8. Learning to sail is more fun than learning to sell.
9. Learning to sail could come in handy if your home is reposessed and you need portable, floating living accommodations.
10. Captain Jack Sparrow would want you to learn to sail.
11. Learning to sail might be the gateway to your next great vacation: sailing around the Bahamas.
12. Learning to sail would improve your employability if you lived in Ocracoke, NC.
13. Learning to sail will lead to a quicker and less strenuous way to circumnavigate Manhattan rather than circumnavigating by sea kayak.
14. Learning to sail is good for you.
15. Learning to sail is good for the world.
16. Learning to sail will include comprehensive classroom and on-water sailing instruction.
17. Learning to sail epitomizes the beauty of sailing
18. Learning to sail is intense.
19. Learning to sail is fun.
20. Learning to sail is challenging.
21. Learning to sail is relaxing.
22. Learning to sail is rewarding.
23. Learning to sail will be one of the most exciting adventures of your life.
24. Learning to sail will be an exhilarating tonic for your senses.
25. Learning to sail will be refreshing.
26. Learning to sail is all-natural and very, very clean education.
27. Learning to sail can be a very spiritual experience. After all, one of the most respected spiritual leaders in history sailed on Lake Galilee.
28. Learning to sail will provide great stories to tell your children and grandchildren.
29. Learning to sail could lead to your publishing your first novel.
30. Learning to sail is natural.
31. Learning to sail is not taxable.
32. Learning to sail gets you into the great outdoors.
33. Learning to sail gets you off the couch and away from the television.
34. Learning to sail is for real men and women who love life with a passion.
35. Learning to sail requires no computer skills.
36. Learning to sail is part of the natural evolution of humanity.
37. Learning to sail frees you from the concrete jungle.
38. Learning to sail could provide you with your next way of commuting to work.
39. Learning to sail will lead you to some of the best fishing spots in the world, and thus a free meal.
40. Learning to sail is what movies and memories are made of.
41. Learning to sail is not hazardous to your health.
42. Learning to sail should have been one of the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights.
43. Learning to sail will help you learn to speak like a pirate.
44. Learning to sail will impress your friends and help you make even more friends.
45. Learning to sail returns you to your home, the sea.
So many adjectives so much to experience. I'll add one of my own: Learning to sail is available to you regardless of your age or ethnic background.
Contact us at Karma Yacht Sales and we can point you in the direction of some local sailing centers and other resources for learning how to sail. You'll be glad you tried it as it is never to late to learn.

Local Sailor Showcases Sailing for 2016 IOC

Chicago trader's sailing group shows off for IOC
Posted by Shia K. at 4/15/2009 11:09 AM CDT on Chicago Business

A new Chicago sailing organization put on a show last week during the visit by International Olympic Committee evaluators. Sailing crews ran races on Lake Michigan’s choppy waters in front of the Shedd Aquarium, where IOC members were dining at the time. "The races are short, so it was perfect for them to see while they ate lunch," says sailing enthusiast Donald Wilson, founder of Chicago-based DRW Trading Group and the new Belmont Harbor-based
Chicago Match Race Center.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Picture of the Week: April 6,2009

This Week's picture of the week: Sailing must be the 'Pot of Gold' they talk about.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Reason #2: To Buy a Beneteau

Reason #2: Embrace Family Values

Everyone is busy these days and the hours of each day seem to fly by. Slow things down and go sailing with your family. Turn off the Wii, the computer and the television and spend some time having fun together... Read more.

Beneteau 34 Featured in Yachting Monthly

The Beneteau 34 (marketed as the Beneteau Oceanis 34 in Europe) will be featured in the May issue of Yachting Monthly. Replacing the popular 343, the new Beneteau 34 promises to deliver quality, innovation and value in a size range that has been very popular in Lake Michigan. Regardless of whether you sail short-handed or with guests, the Beneteau 34 will meet your needs. She has a smart deck layout with a generous sized cockpit and ample open layout down below. The Beneteau 34 was named Cruising World BOTY -BEST VALUE this past December.

Visit this link to read the Yachting Monthly review online.

To see the KYS specs on the Beneteau 34 Visit our Website.

Additional Information on the Beneteau 34:

Beneteau 34- Cruising World Magazine Boat of the Year-Best Value

Monday, April 6, 2009

NY State's Luxury Tax is Nixed

The Marine Industry Publication 'Soundings Trade Only' announced that the state of NY would be dropping their proposed 'Luxury Tax' effecting the sale of boats retailing for more than $200,000. Much like the proposed Illinois Luxury Tax (HB 0451) that was tabled this past February. The NY tax (like the proposed IL tax) would have punished marine retailers in the NY State area and adversely effected employment within the industry.

It is an economic reality of the times we live in that many state and local municipalities are struggling to shore up their operating budgets. Unfortunately,it seems like boating is a ripe target atvarious levels. It will require that the boating community become vigilant of such practices, but most of all,vocal about taxation of the sport that is shared by a enthusiasts from diverse economic backgrounds. The over 300 marine businesses in the state of Illinois that deal with the sales, service and brokerage of boats (both power and sail) would have been negatively effected.


New York drops luxury tax proposal -Soundings Trade Only

Karma Yacht Sales Takes Leadership Position in Speaking out against proposed Bill (HB0451) - Illinois State Luxury Goods Tax- KYS Press Release February 23, 2009

Boat Legislation Proposed in Illinois- Dock Talk-February 20, 2009

Get Involved: Proposed Bill HB0451- Luxury Tax- Dock Talk-February 21, 2009

Update on Proposed HB0451- Dock Talk- February 25, 2009

HB0451 (Illinois Luxury Tax) Update -Dock Talk- February 26, 2009

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Do Your Part for the Environment-Sail

In what might be considered some of the best news to come out of Washington, D.C. , the legislative and executive branches of the government announced today that they would like the "carbon zero benefits of sailing to be taken into consideration as business grants are being doled out to strengthen the marine industry". In what might be considered a bit of an April Fool's joke when you take today's date into consideration, it reinforces something that many sailors already know- Sailing is Green. For the full press release- see the link at the bottom of this page.

So maybe there is hope for Washington? Just Look at Today's date and see why...

Obama to back yachting initiatives -IBI Magazine/Yachting Monthly