Delta Rat Scrapbook - February 2019

Lighted Boat Show At Village West Marina

The Christmas season was upon us and the marina held its second annual lighted boat show on Friday November 30. This one was more spectacular than last years with 17 fantastically decorated boats participating. Paul Kimble and the Lincoln High School choir along with a few others performed Christmas songs for the crowd. Children were treated to face painting and a cookie decorating contest. Naturally Santa was on hand holding court, and patiently taking instructions from the children on what gifts to deliver on Christmas morning. The docks looked like Santa′s Village and there were hundreds of folks from the Stockton area attending. Representatives from the Stockton Women′s Center were on hand accepting donations from many of the visitors. The marina management and staff go all out on this event and it is a great service to the community and a joy to the children that drop by.

37th Annual Lynn Hahn Memorial Delta Reflections Boat Parade

The Stockton Yacht Club has taken over this annual Delta event from the Marina West Yacht Club. It makes sense as the Stockton Yacht Club is close to the action for this parade. Captain Ron Malmquist and first mate Joan invited us to join their crew for the trip. We made it to the club at 1600 hours and soon the fleet from the club headed downstream to the rendezvous point offshore from Windmill Cove.

One of the things that I do is try to sit quietly while others talk so I can learn a lot of interesting things. This time I uncovered Joan Malmquist′s secret recipe for great bean dip in a pie plate. Pour a can of Dennison′s chili into the pie plate, cover with cream cheese and add grated cheddar cheese for the top coat. Nuke the concoction for a few minutes and serve hot with tortilla chips. It is great and almost a meal in itself. Joan is a good friend of mine, I hope she won′t be upset that I shared this with the world. The Malmquist′s are excellent hosts and Ron has a 1,000-watt stereo system that he uses to blast Christmas music all along the parade route.

The parade was excellent. With partnership from the City of Stockton, the Port of Stockton and other area organizations, individuals and businesses, 39 boats were registered, and they raised $1,125.00 for the Children′s Home of Stockton. Roger Hahn is involved in this event every year as a tribute to his Mom, Lynn Hahn.

Discovery Bay Yacht Club Lighted Boat Parade

Bob Clappier tells us about the Discovery Bay lighted boat parade. Here is a photo of the winner of the Commodore′s Cup in the Discovery Bay Yacht Club Lighted Boat Parade held on Dec 8. It is Mike and Grace Milne′s boat decorated as a stagecoach drawn by reindeer and driven by Santa and Frosty the Snowman. Other winners were: 25 feet and over 3rd Place - Boat #7, Ron Pargett; 2nd Place - Boat #6, Curtis Bloomquist; 1st Place - Boat #10, Roger Boaz. 37 feet and up: 3rd place - Boat #1, Rich Allen; 2nd Place - Boat #8, Ron McCaslin 1st Place - Boat #3, Dave Readler.

St. Francis Yacht Club Decorated Boat Parade

We were pleased to see Miss 102, the Areias family yacht, won the 24th annual SFYC Decorated Boat Parade. Rusty gives credit to Scott Pike for designing and installing the display.

B Dock Party

The folks that keep their boats on the B Dock at the Sacramento Marina are legendary for their adventures and parties. Commodore Les Cochren invited Sue and I to join them at their annual feast at Simon′s Bar & Café in downtown Sacramento. A lot of the shipmates were there, and we dined on bacon wrapped filet Mignon and lobster tails along with Simon′s special fried rice and salad & vegetables. Les recently returned from Hong Kong and regaled us with his stories of the trip. He brought me a t-shirt and Sue a beautiful silk scarf. Les also gave us a sample of his latest product, Sum of Dis Sum of Dat, a pepper seasoning. A lover all things hot, I am a big fan of this new spicy product. I was glad to catch up with Les as he left a few days later for another party in Las Vegas. Meanwhile the marina had their Holiday party in the marina clubhouse with a lot of food and fun.

New Orleans Military Museum

Don and Nita Rienhart, Randy and Linda Welch, Bob and Marleen Spoor along with John and Barbara Wesley, all from the Stockton Yacht Club, paid a visit to the Big Easy so they could go to the World War II Museum and see the newly restored PT-305. Randy files this report:

“On our first day we signed up for a supposed 45-minute deck tour of the PT boat. Three hours later after touring the boat, the shop and reviewing all the historical info they had we finally went to lunch. Bob Wade, the Executive Officer and Maintenance Manager went way out of his way when he found that we also had strong connections to the USS Lucid, the minesweeper project at the Stockton Maritime Museum. Both the PT boat and the minesweeper were built in New Orleans at the Higgins factory which built 20,000 craft for the allies during WW2. Don was loaded up with parts and more is to come when shipment can be arranged. Best of all, Bob had us scheduled for an unexpected ride on the boat two days later.

PT-305 is the only restored and active WW2 war veteran PT boat in existence. It served in Europe around France and Italy where it sank two Axis ships. Due to fortune and luck, the boat was returned to the U.S. for refurbishment and redeployment to the Pacific when the war ended. The vessel was then sold and used for tours in New York and then further in the fishing industry. It was saved by another museum in Texas, but they did not have the resources to tackle such a large project. The World War II museum in New Orleans acquired it and spent eight full years restoring the boat under Restoration Manager, Tom Czekanki, along with hundreds of volunteers many who had worked in the Higgins factory during the war.

The day of the ride the skies were storm threatening but we avoided any heavy rain and had the time of our life! The boat can do about 43 knots with its three twelve-cylinder Packard engines that put out a combined 4,500 hp. We were treated to a 40-minute ride that simulated torpedo runs and evasive maneuvers that showed us the stability and maneuverability of this 78-foot boat. The sound of those engines was just pure music to us motor heads on board. Every single piece of this boat is authentic with only the systems required by the Coast Guard being upgraded. Looking forward while underway, the entire crew was dressed in period uniforms and with the guns, torpedoes and flags flying, we were taken back in time when these small craft and their crews were put in harm′s way with mahogany versus steel in some of the most daring battles in World War II. I recommend to anyone traveling to New Orleans to visit the PT-305 and the World War II Museum. They are on a par with the Smithsonian and any other top tier museum in the country!”

Ebony Boat Club 29th Annual Inaugural Dinner Dance

Dr. Sharon Fuller was emcee of the affair and introduced guests and luminaries after which Dane McCoy led us in the pledge of allegiance. Rear Commodore LC Fuller performed the invocation. We dined on chicken and beef with green beans, mashed potatoes, and some excellent deserts all prepared in the club galley.

The club awarded two scholarships: one to Haleigh Haagensen a graduate and Valedictorian from River City High School in West Sacramento, among her many accomplishments she took first place at the UC Davis robotics competition. She has studied Marine Biology and Oceanography along with Law and Forensic Psychology. She plans to become a trauma surgeon.

The other scholarship went to Zoe Washington. Zoe was sponsored by Bill and Roxanne Washington. Zoe is a member of the National Honor Society and World Language National Honor Society among many other academic and community service awards. I am confident both these young adults are headed for illustrious careers.

Next on the agenda was the installation of officers. Kerry Davis assumed the role of Staff Commodore while Frank Whitehead came on as Commodore. The clubhouse was decorated with some photos of Frank dating back to when he was a toddler aboard his father′s boat. Frank says he has been boating since age three and has a photo of himself sitting at the helm of his father′s boat to prove it. Frank bought his first boat at sixteen and later sold it to a neighbor with the proviso that he could use it anytime he wanted. One day he went over to borrow it and the new owner was out fishing in another boat. Frank took the boat and went out fishing, he was amused when he was headed back and passed the fellow that bought it being towed back in after a mishap in the other boat.

A View From The Top

Most of us have boated under, flown over and have traveled over it in automobiles. Some of you have walked across it. I am speaking of the Golden Gate Bridge naturally. Kerry Davis recently retired from his job as an ironworker on the bridge, he has been all over it. From the top of the towers to below the deck. He sent me some photos from his tenure on the bridge. This is especially interesting to Sue who is terrified of heights.

The Lost Dinghy

Bob and Beverly Cain recently spent some time in the Bay on their yacht Beverly Ann. One night, Bob carefully tied his shore boat to a stern mooring cleat and prepared to enjoy the evening with onboard guests. Sometime later he was shocked to see an object a few hundred yards away drifting while he watched. A quick look around and he discovered his shore boat missing. Bob also had a kayak aboard and with a little help he was able to climb in and paddle off after the wayward boat. Anyway, Bob can tell the story a lot better than I can:

“In mid-October my wife, Beverly, and I were getting near the end of our two-month extended cruise to the San Francisco Bay from our home port at the Stockton Yacht Club. We decided that a quiet weekend on the hook in Clipper Cove would be a nice way to wind down the last two weeks of our cruise.

Beverly′s brother, Larry Jackson, and his girlfriend, Kimberly Bridges, were planning to join us that afternoon for an early dinner onboard the Beverly Ann before we would return them by dinghy to their car in the parking lot on Treasure Island.

As planned, Beverly and I picked up Larry and Kimberly in our dinghy and returned to our boat several hours before sunset. Because the westerly breeze was much stronger than usual, I elected to tether the dinghy to the stern of the Beverly Ann by way of a brand new single .375-inch bow line and allow the dinghy to swing freely some ten feet off the back of our boat. I was careful to tie a proper double cleat hitch to one of the cleats on the stern of our boat.

The east span of the Bay Bridge made a beautiful backdrop for our afternoon and evening enjoyment of adult beverages and a wonderful dinner prepared by Beverly. Somewhere around the 10 o′clock hour, Kimberly said, “What′s that floating out there?” Sure enough, in the shaft of light cast on the water by the tower of the Bridge was a dark object floating some fifty yards off the stern of our boat. Being a Delta boater, my first thought was that we were looking at a clump of tulles adrift. But, obviously, that could not be the case here in the Bay. Kimberly said that she thought it was our dinghy. I said our dinghy was tethered to the back of our boat where it had been for no less than six hours. But, as I stood up and looked over the transom, I was shocked to see that the dinghy was gone!

The next couple of seconds must have seemed like a scene from a Keystone Cops movie. I said to start the engines and raise the anchor, we will chase it down. That idea was quickly dismissed as the dinghy was rapidly drifting toward shallower water. If we ran the Beverly Ann aground attempting to rescue the dinghy, we would be worthy of some sort of a bad boater award.

Next, Beverly suggested calling Vessel Assist and that sounded like a better idea but at 2000 hours on a Saturday, by the time someone could reach us, our dinghy would be lost in the dark somewhere in Emeryville or Oakland. Now what?

Beverly reminded that we had our kayak with us. That′s right! I dig my out my $70 plastic kayak. Larry and I grabbed the kayak while Beverly retrieved my inflatable life jacket. The next few minutes was a comedy unto itself as Beverly and I tried to figure out how to get that lifejacket properly strapped onto me. That would have been a good skit for late night Saturday television viewing. Before I knew it, I was in the kayak and paddling with all my might toward that tiny speck that now looked like it was nearing the bridge. As I pressed on into the darkness, the water was starting to get choppy and the wind was pushing my rather unstable kayak around making directional control difficult. But, I had just enough of the adult beverages to believe I could do this so on I pressed.

Sitting in my kayak hacking my way through the choppy water, I had my first moments to truly contemplate my situation and my next moves. Getting out of this kayak is difficult enough even when firmly attached to a dock or swim platform. How would I get out of the kayak and up into the dinghy without winding up in the water and if I were successful, could I save the kayak in the process or would it be lost to the darkness? Little did I know that back onboard the Beverly Ann, Beverly, Larry and Kimberly were having a conversation about what they would do if I had difficulty. I′m glad I did not know about that until later in the evening.

Suddenly, out of the darkness and almost to my surprise, came the dinghy into full view. Somehow, I managed to grab the bowline and pulled myself alongside. Into the dinghy went the paddles. Now I was committed. I must find a way to get into the dinghy. To this day, I cannot tell you what kind of a maneuver I made to thrust myself up and over the side and into the dinghy, but I did it without getting wet and I managed to hang onto the kayak in the process. Thank heaven I had left the key in the ignition switch earlier that afternoon. That little detail had not crossed my mind in my rush to launch after the errant dinghy. Upon my return with the dinghy and kayak, there was much celebrating and another round of adult beverages to toast the victory.

There are many lessons that could be learned from this adventure. Most of which you can derive for yourself. But, remember, new nylon lines, especially wet ones, if you tug and tug on it long enough, even a double cleat hitch will eventually untie itself. I secured the dinghy to the Beverly Ann using three methods and got out of bed twice during the night to make sure it was still there. Oh, yes, the final chapter to this story; when we took Larry and Kimberly back to shore later that evening, the card key that I had rented earlier that day would not unlock the gate to let Larry and Kimberly out and into the parking lot. When you see me, ask me about the card key. That is a story unto itself.” (Editors note #1- I spoke to Beverly Cain and she says that somehow a bottle of Patron tequila enters into this adventure, I will have to investigate further), (Editor′s note #2 - I was involved in hauling out a 55-foot steel ketch in Honolulu in my youth. We had about a three-inch diameter nylon hawser to use and for the life of us we could not get a knot to stay in it, we finally used a bowline on a bight and about fifteen or so half-hitches and it held)

Marina West Yacht Club (MWYC)

On Saturday December 15th, MWYC held their lighted boat parade with a potluck dinner at the clubhouse afterwards. Twenty-four boats participated, and the decorations were spectacular.

The boats paraded from the guest dock up Georgiana Slough almost to the Tyler Island Bridge and back. After the parade, everyone headed to the clubhouse for a potluck dinner. The marina owners provided a ham and a turkey. From the reports I received it sounds like no one went hungry. We arrived to take photos and had a great vantage point but had to leave before the party.

A Couple Of Birthdays

Dave and Linda Breninger invited Sue and me to join them at the Grand Island Mansion for Sunday brunch. Their daughter Cindy′s birthday is on December 20 (another Sagittarius). While we were talking to them Sue let it slip that my birthday was on December 19th so the Breningers instantly decided that the celebration should include me too.

Sue and I picked up Cindy at her new residence, Area 51 (I leave it to Cindy to explain that to you). We met the rest of the group at the mansion, they were engaged in taking photos in the front yard when we arrived. Cindy′s sister Monica and cousin Hannah Davies were in the group too, you would be hard pressed to find a more charming family than the Breningers.

After the round of photos, we headed in for brunch. We found our table in the dining room and then headed to the serving room for a feast. We filled our plates with salad, potatoes, string beans, eggs benedict and prime rib. The Mansion is noted for its French toast and I am not sure exactly how they prepare it, but it is mouthwatering, you could easily have it be your entire meal. There was even a separate dessert table with gelato, cheese cake, creme brulee, custard tarts and other delicacies.

We enjoyed mimosas and champagne with the brunch. Dave arranged for Cindy and me to have our dessert with burning birthday candles. After making wishes and a chorus of Happy Birthday we relaxed with a cup of coffee. Personally, I was stuffed but did have enough energy to join the group for a tour of the mansion. I had not been here for a few years since we had a masked ball there a decade ago. While we were there I ran into Vince and Pam Meyer who I know from the San Francisco Bay Area Nordic Tugs Association. I also met Rosemarie DeHerrera a vocalist from the Bay Area who has performed with Lee Greenwood and other country greats. You can checkout some of her work on Facebook or on her website rosemaries music.com

The Grand Island Mansion is still one of the most beautiful estates in the Delta. Lewis W. Meyers farmed close to 900 acres on Grand Island with a variety of fruit trees and asparagus. He could ship produce nationwide from his own landing on Steamboat Slough. In 1917 he decided to build his dream house on the island. He turned the project over to his wife, Henrietta, who hired San Francisco architect J. W. Dolliver to design the four-story, 24,000 square-foot, 58 room mansion. The building was completed in 1920. Sadly, Meyers passed away in 1922, Henrietta along with their son Louis J. Meyers, kept the estate maintained and the farm running until the great depression of the 1930s. They kept selling off parcels of land and eventually sold the building.

The estate fell into disrepair until the mid-1950s when Frank Parisi took over. Frank opened an Italian restaurant on Fulton Avenue in Sacramento in the early 1950s. It was run by Frank and his wife whose name escapes me. The food was fantastic, I still remember it after all these years. My parents went there so often that they became friends with Frank and his wife. At some point in the 1950s Frank acquired the Grand Island Mansion and at about the same time he came into possession of John Wayne′s stern wheeler Putah (she was the star of the film “Blood Alley” filmed on the San Joaquin River around Stockton). Frank renamed the boat Mansion Belle, he had a mooring in old Sacramento and would take groups down the river to the mansion for dinner. Well I think he only did that once or twice, Mansion Belle did great going down the river with the current but coming back up was a long chugging haul. He decided to cruise the boat upstream from Sacramento and serve food during the cruise. My mom owned a dress shop and would hold fashion shows aboard the boat and in his restaurant.

Another Birthday

John Romero, Marina West Yacht Club Commodore is another Sagittarius. The beautiful Patti Romero put together a great party for him at the clubhouse. Many of John′s friends attended which led to a good crowd at the clubhouse. Patti provided lasagna, ravioli, and other delicacies.

39th Annual Frozen Bun Run

Rob and Kim Burnham hosted the 39th Annual New Year′s Day Frozen Bun Run at their Rusty Porthole Restaurant on Bethel Island. Participants either ski or most wakeboard from the dock at Boyd′s Harbor out into Franks Tract and return, trying not to freeze to death in the process. There were a few thousand people there lining the levee and docks to watch the action. The harbor was packed with boats and their crews. Rob and Susan Bernhard had the same reserved spot for their classic Matthews yacht, Susan Gayle, that they have had for the last 20 years or so. Jack Hanna, Katie Senior, Danny DeLuca and many other local luminaries were on hand. I met Lucas Brandon just as he was starting his run. He said he did his first run fifteen years ago when he was 11 years old.

Ty wanted one of Bay & Delta Yachtsman staff to participate in the event. I nominated Kim Haworth, but she did not show up so that left just Ty and me. Luckily, he drew the short straw and would do the run and I would stay on the dock and take photos. I mean you are talking water that is around 45 degrees. I did not think that even my ample layer of fat would protect me. Ty is a lot younger and quicker, so I figured he had a lot better chance to stay relatively dry. He did great a great job with good form and stayed up right to the end. Next year I am confident we can get Kim to participate while Ty and I take photos.

Rob and Kim′s son Ryan drives the boat for the run nowadays, he has been driving boats since he was about ten and was the dock attendant for valet docking. Now he is about six-feet, six-inches tall and an excellent boat driver.

This event is the perfect way to start the new year. Even if you don′t want to get wet you can still have a great time. The Porthole is one of the most popular spots in the Delta and Rob and Kim along with their staff do a great job entertaining their customers and serving great food and drink. Eventually my hands were so cold I could barely operate my camera, so I headed up to the restaurant, the place was packed with folks having a great time. Even outside you had to make your way through the crowd to check out the various booths with t-shirts and other cool stuff.

Eight Bells

As I close out this month, I get late word from Blair Hake that David McDonald has crossed over the bar. His passing is a great loss to boating and to the community. David you may remember cruised his beautiful yacht Casino Royale into the downtown Stockton Marina back in 2012 and spent the summer here. The boat attracted many visitors to Stockton and showed what possibilities the marina had and even graced the cover of our own Bay & Delta Yachtsman as photographed by Ty back in May of 2012. David spent much of his time and resources on community service. After the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks he sent planes to New York to pick up first responders and brought them to Fresno to honor them. David McDonald was a great man.

Irish Pennants

The St. Francis Yacht club has invited me to do a presentation on the history of yachting in the Delta. It will be on February 6 at the Wednesday Yachting Luncheon at the club house. You do not have to be a member of the club to attend. Call 415/563.6363 for information.

The Marine Recreation Association is holding their 4th annual boaters congress in Sacramento on Tuesday, March 5th and Wednesday, March 6th at the Embassy Suites Sacramento Riverfront Promenade hotel. A cocktail reception welcoming early attendees will be held on the evening of March 5th providing hosts, sponsors and attendees an opportunity to meet and mingle before the main event. Keynote speakers and a summary of legislative issues will be featured on the 6th starting in the morning, followed by breakout sessions focused on key issues and legislator meeting instructions. Lunch will be served, and then attendees will proceed to the State Capitol for meetings with individual legislative representatives throughout the afternoon. If you register early you can save a little money. For more information go to www.calboatingcongress.com

HydroHoist Marine Group (HMG) announced Delayna Trease as Director of Marketing. Trease joins HMG with 10 years of experience in sales and marketing and has played key roles in referral development, marketing planning, social media and web development strategies. “I am excited to have Delayna join our team. We are in an aggressive growth pattern and Delayna′s experience will be pivotal in the direction our marketing will take in the coming years,” said Mick Webber, HMG President and CEO.

Delayna worked as a receptionist at HydroHoist while she was in high school and vowed to get a marketing degree and come back. “I am excited to be a part of this dynamic company. It has always been a dream of mine to work in the marine industry, especially with HydroHoist. I admire how this company has maintained the industry leader boat lift status and I am thrilled to work with the best in the industry,” Trease said. Delayna can be reached at marketing@boatlift.com

Jerry Wolfe has taken over management of the Windmill Cove Bar & Grill. We met him at a recent event in Stockton he catered for the Delta Chamber. He is a great fellow and excellent chef. He is open for business and I am confident that he will do great at this popular Delta spot.

2019 is going to be a most excellent year! Let me know what you are doing! Commodorewells@msn.com or 916/869.9141. H


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