Opening Day Ceremonies

By Lynda Millner   |   March 15, 2018
Commodore John Koontz and wife Teresa, vice commodore Scott Deardorff and Leslie, Garry Pawlitski and Susan at the Yacht Club opening

For the 146th time, the Santa Barbara Yacht Club celebrated the inauguration of their sailing season. Members and guests who came from far and near were greeted by red, white, and blue balloons and buntings all about the clubhouse. At the “helm” of the receiving line was commodore John Koontz, vice commodore Scott Deardorff, and rear commodore Garry Pawlitski. Visiting yacht club commodores came from as far away as San Francisco and San Diego, and navy-blue blazers were de rigueur.

The day began at 8 am, with a delicious decadent breakfast that was more like brunch. Besides the usual breakfast fare of eggs benedict, bacon, and sausage, there was prime rib,crab claws, cheeses, an omelet station, and a whole table of tiny desserts. The coup de grace was the miniature donut machine churning out fresh hot donuts with a choice of four flavors of icing. This brunch was under the auspices of the new manager, Layosh Toth.

The Cub Scouts presented the colors, and the blessing was giving by Rick Comstock. It was the best blessing using humor that made us think and laugh too. Teen Star finalists McKenna Gemberling and Nicole Truillo sang for us. Commodore Koontz told us how he came to love the sea. “When I was ten, my folks bought a 40-foot boat and we sailed to Tahiti with my two brothers. We were out of school for a year. My own kids started boating at six months.” He and his wife, Teresa, won the trophy for the best-kept boat, the Cherokee, which they bought in 1994. He also praised the women’s auxiliary who does so much for the club. And another facet is the youth sailing program.

All the visitors were introduced, and the canon was shot off signifying the opening of the racing season. There was a parade of the fleet on the water in front of the Yacht Club, followed by the Casper Opening Day Race. The day ended with trophy presentations. Ship ahoy!

Deise Mendonca and Mauricio Vera from State Street Ballet at the toy party
Yacht Club treasurer Mark Shevetz and Kate with Leslie Power and secretary Dennis

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