Merced County Times Newspaper
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Photos by Chris Martin

Lake Yosemite sailors celebrate annual Awards Night

It was a short sailing season for the Lake Yosemite Sailing Association; however, the crowd who attended the Annual Awards Night was out in force. The reservations-only Asian dinner served nearly 70 people and the weather accommodated the crowd with an excellent evening by the lake.

First place in the racing season went to Jerry Johnson, who just by chance set up the catered dinner with Norm Martin. The two of them teamed as Social Chairmen for the season.

There were only seven boats which raced during the season, with a promise of a better turnout next season if the lake water levels stay up.

Rachel Hadley, the Association’s Race Captain, was the MC for the evening. She announced that she would be giving up the job next year because, “I want to race.”

Debbie Harden, LYSA’s House Captain, commended her helpers for their hard work keeping the house clean and up to top standards.

Commodore Jay Sousa said the club did well under the circumstances and he introduced next year’s Commodore Thom Grimaldi, a longtime member.

The Sailing Association has maintained a membership of about 70 families or over 200 people if all members of the families were counted.

John Derby presented a special award to Owen Cooper for being the youngest boat captain at the age of 13. He was a graduate of several sail classes.

Craig Anderson’s work as gardener and maintenance man was very well appreciated.

Kendall Nightengale was thanked for his work as Dock Captain.

The Lake Yosemite Sailing Association is only possible due to the volunteers who come out to help with its programs. The Association leases its property from the Merced Irrigation District while Merced County has the lease on the park itself.

In normal years LYSA holds an Annual Regatta in the Spring and a Shrimp Feed in the Summer, but because of fluctuating water levels, the Regatta and Shrimp Feed were postponed to next year.

Membership in the club is open to the public. Simply go online for the monthly newsletter and info on how to join. The club also maintains and rents the docks at a very low cost per season.

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