Catalina Fleet 21 - Chicago Region
FleetSheet Newsletter


June 2007

June 2007


Besides boats, the favorite Fleet topic of conversation has got to be the weather. It affects our plans, attendance at outings, the number of margaritas sold (115 this year and that was in the pouring rain!) and how we dress. Find out what’s the latest in weather forecasting at our June General Meeting on the 19th. There’s actually much more info available than is given in the marine forecast on the weather radio. Amy Seeley from NOAA in Romeoville will fill in all the details with a demonstration of how to navigate their web site to find all the hidden (and not so hidden ) content. The meeting is June 19 at the Burnham

The meeting is at the Burnham Park Yacht Club, located at 1500 S. Linn White Drive. Follow the signs to the Museum Campus. The Yacht Club will offer a limited menu of moderately priced items. Come early and have dinner. Call the Yacht Club at 312-427-4664 for reservations. Tell them you are part of the Catalina Fleet. The meeting will begin at 8:00 p.m. Parking may be available in the old airport parking lot. As of today nothing is scheduled for Charter One Pavilion.

Summer and Fleet Activities are here! For the best sailing summer ever plan to attend these upcoming events.

June 9          Chili Fest Burnham Harbor (flyer in this newsletter)

June 22-24    Summer Sailstice Cruise to New Buffalo (flyer in this newsletter)

July 13 – 15  LMCA Rendezvous in Holland, Michigan

July 15         Pete Duerr Memorial Pickle Race at LMCA Rendezvous

August 3      Catalina 30 Nationals

August 11    Jackson Park Jazz Fest

August 18    Cruise to Northpoint

Sept. 1         Labor Day Cruise to Michigan City

Need more information on an outing or need to find a buddy boat? Call Lois Bretall 708-974-4932,
Robin Green 219-406-2954, the outing sponsor, your Harbor Master or the Commodore



Well folks, it looks like we are officially under way with the sailing season. The harbors seem about 90% full and the usual cast of characters have shown up again. I know the sailing season is short and we all try to get as much sailing in as we can. Deborah and I had our boat in in April this year. We sailed the Friday night before Memorial Day. It felt like we were sailing in a refrigerator. Maybe we should wait until later next year. We won’t. That’s the thing about sailing We all have selective amnesia. It’s always this way in May, year in year out.

Speaking of selective amnesia, how bout the Margarita party. We had 50 or so members who forgot that standing around in the rain is something our mothers all told us not to do. In spite of that everyone had a good time. This year we said farewell, but not goodbye, to Walter and Dorthea Wolf at the Margarita party. Walter and Dorthea have been members since 1988. This year they sold their 30, Lupi, and have decided to take a different direction. Walter and Dorthea were the first members who approached Deborah and I at our very first Catalina meeting. We had Ashley (age 10) and Whitley (age 7) in tow. They made us feel welcome. On behalf of the entire Club we wish the Wolfs well. Heck, invite them sailing if you get the chance. Not only did we say farewell to the Wolfs at the Margarita party, we also got introduced to our newest members, Tom and Eddie Grove. They sail a 30 named FINS out of Monroe Harbor. Welcome aboard. We also had our first race at the Margarita party. Roger and Bev Suhar skippered Allegro to victory crewed by David and Robin Green and Ted and Francine Kuenzli. I hear they sailed so fast that they virtually left their competition sitting at the docks.

Now is the time to pay close attention to your newsletter and the Website. We have a lot of outings coming up. As has been mentioned in prior newsletters we are going to try to have sailing and racing at all of these outings. Rain and thunder held a lot of people back at the Margarita party and may have contributed to the victory of Allegro but it won’t be raining and thundering at all our outings. If you are interested in sailing or racing please contact the outing sponsor, David Green or Deborah Ruxton as far in advance as possible.

Couple of other items. Kudos’ to our club members attending the various functions at Burnham. We’ve all shown a great spirit of cooperation with the billing process and things have been working very well. I know the Yacht Club is happy with the way things have been going. Finally, let me know how Catalina Fleet 21 works for you and if you have any suggestions to improve the Fleet. I will try to get notice to our board members or general members in advance of any meetings so we can have a constructive discussion of anything anyone thinks we need to address. For example, we have formed a committee this year to re-evaluate the guidelines for administering the Mariner’s Fund. The thought is that we might be able to expand the Fleet’s generosity beyond sailing only recipients. Talk to Linda Kleitz, Mickey Thompson, Lucy Jakubas, Deborah Ruxton or me if you have any suggestions. Your board is really trying to make the season and the entire club as successful as it can be. Your thought and suggestions are all appreciated. Enjoy!

Beginning this month we’ll publish the story behind the names of our Fleet boats. What’s your boat name and why? Does it reflect a hobby, a girl friend, a memory? Send your story to the Fleet Sheet Editor at DeAre . Attach a picture of your boat if you have one. Our first story is from Bob and Cheryl Kuba on Quiet Island.

During the winter of 2001, Cheryl & I decided it might be time for a larger boat of our own. We had been partners on a Catalina 22 and a Catalina 27, and it was time to go it alone. We spent a few months surfing the internet looking for the perfect boat that was paired up with the perfect price. It was a daunting task and we really didn't expect to find a boat that met our wishlist, but it was fun to window shop. One day we ran across a Catalina 34 located on Lake Erie in Cleveland, Ohio. The boat had a list of options that was only equaled by a West Marine Catalog, and it seemed too good to be true.

We made up a list of "eliminator" questions that would nix the deal, and then "made the call". The owner was very pleasant and answered every question to our satisfaction. AND, he was soon to be a two boat owner and was anxious to sell quickly. Was this meant to be? There has to be something wrong, it's just too perfect. We made arrangements to view the boat, showed up at the airport the next weekend, flew standby to Cleveland, rented a car at the airport, and drove to the boatyard on Cleveland's lakefront.

It was a cold and dreary day in early March with temperatures in the upper 30's and a steady drizzle falling. On the drive over from the airport I told Cheryl, "We're just going to look, that's all. It would be crazy for us to buy the first boat we looked at." Having lived in Cleveland before, not to mention, Buffalo, Memphis, Minneapolis, Anchorage, and Fairbanks, I knew just how easily "crazy" things happen. I shifted nervously in my seat as we drove through the familiar streets of Cleveland.

One of our favorite vacation spots is in the Caribbean, on a quiet island far removed from the hustle and bustle of all the tourists in their black socks, sandals and screaming kids. A place to unwind and relax. As we approached the boat sitting on the cradle the first thing we noticed was the name. "Quiet Island". The name had a wonderful graphic with a palm tree inside the letter "Q". I knew right away we were in trouble. Even the steady drizzle couldn't dampen this adventure.

We met Denny and toured the boat in its' winter storage state. Certainly not the best way to "show" a boat, but it looked fantastic to us. Somehow we could see beyond the buckets, the helter-skelter cushions, a hole in the deck where the mast should be soaring to the heavens, and a sink full of tools. All we could see were endless summers under sail, cruising to this new place Denny had mentioned, "The North Channel". He said it was like the Caribbean but with pine trees in place of palm trees, and water so clear you could see your anchor sitting on the bottom. It was somewhere up in Canada. A place where he and Elaine his wife spent every summer on their Quiet Island. Denny offered to buy us lunch in the Edgewater Yacht Club which was just a few feet from where the boat was stored for the winter. The hook was set and he was reeling us in towards our destiny. We weren’t putting up much of a struggle either.

Once inside the yacht club Denny's wife Elaine joined us excitedly for the most expensive lunch we didn't pay for. During lunch Elaine told Cheryl, "We just want her to have a good home". I could feel Cheryl's hand tighten around mine and I knew it was a done deal. After lunch Denny said, "Well, how about you make us an offer. We'll go around the table and see if we can agree on a price. I'll start, how about $$$$$$?" I swallowed hard. How could this be happening, we haven't even talked it over? I need to slow this down a bit, we're just not ready. So I opened my mouth, but no words came out, only $$$. Cheryl looked at me stunned. She could distinctly remember me saying "We're only going to look".

I was as stunned as she was. How did that slip out? We looked at each other with wide eyes as Denny asked Elaine what she thought of my offer. Elaine said, "Well I think $$$$$ is more in line with what we were thinking. So Denny asked Cheryl, "What do you think of Elaine's price?" Cheryl jumped right in and said $$$$. We turned to Denny and he looked at me and said "Well how about $$$$.50?" I blurted out, "Looks like we have a deal!" Did I say that? Denny jumped up and said, "I have the manuals in the car, I'll go get them!" Everything was a blur after that. All I remember was getting into our rental car with 40 pounds on manuals that stood 3 feet high. Denny had every manual for every piece of equipment he ever put on the boat. We were going to go home on a Southwest jet with a new boat as checked luggage! What have we done? And how are we going to get Quiet Island home to Chicago?

That's another story that you can see here:

Do you own a 30? Consider entering it in the Catalina 30 Nationals August 3 – 5. Contact
Ed Jakubas for more information or to help with this Fleet 21 sponsored event. For the official Notice of Catalina 30 Nationals are here August 3 – 5 and we’re one of the sponsors! Contact Ed Jakubas for more information or to sign up to help. The official Notice of Race is at the Association web site at or to
Plan on joining us and reserve your place now!

The Leukemia Cup is August 24-25. It’s a fun race for a great cause. Catalina Fleet 21 can have it’s own start if 5 or more boats participate. Sign up today at

Welcome aboard to our new members!
Skipper: Tom Grove
First Mate: Eddy
New Lenox, IL 60451
Boat Info: Name: FINS Size: 30 Sail #: 4541
Harbor: Monroe; Mooring: NK1

Fleet members may list items they want to sell, trade
or buy in this column without any charge. Send listings to Fleet Sheet Editor, 306 Linden Street, GlenEllyn, IL 60137 or fax to 630-668-8950 or email DeAre .
Phone: 630-469-6117. Ads will run for two issues unless requested otherwise.

It’s not too early to plan on attending Fleet 21’s Annual Awards Banquet. While many details are yet to be worked out,
We have a date: November 17
We have a place: Burnham Harbor Yacht Club
We have a band: Music Plus is returning
Can we count on you??

New this year is an opportunity to sail and attend every outing. Fleet members located at the outing harbor will take you out sailing before the event begins. What a great way to get to know members and experience the sail of different boats. Deborah Ruxton 630.279.4533 is coordinating this aspect of the outings.