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Mary Rolling, SPSC Commodore, 2017
 

Commodore's Comments January 2017

Teamwork makes the Dream Work!!

It is an honor to serve as Commodore for the Shell Point Sail Board Club for 2017. I have been a member for the past 25+ years. The one phrase that comes to mind first is "Team Work makes the Dream Work," (A little cliche, I know) but, In my past 25+ years being a member of the SPSC that is the one thing that keeps the club thriving and Jibing, ha-ha.

Being an avid windsurfer and a member for the past years has given me lots of pleasure. The first and utmost, time on the water, second to that the comradery and last but not least the pleasure of working with fellow members and current and past board members.

My first experience with windsurfing started with Tina; I had the pleasure of meeting her my first time visiting Shell Point while on the end of a spring break vacation with a coworker. I inquired about the rig on the water and she, in turn, offered it up for me to try it out, of course, with a little instruction. That was it, and I was in!

When I say time on the water, I am also referring to time in the water, between beach starts, water starts, and water flops.  And after several attempts, I was finally able to enjoy the ultimate pleasure of being on top of the board, hooked in, sitting back and enjoying the ride! All the while worth every & any effort I put in!!

Not to get all personal and all, but I do have to say that SPSC has provided me with lifelong friends, fabulous windsurfing events, and the emotional support I needed at a couple critical turning points in my life. So what's the point? I guess the real point is, SPSC has always been there for me. So, now it's my turn to be there in return!

Serving on the board these past 2 years has given me insight to how important and crucial our board and club members are. Vince Lombardi writes, "The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual,."  That sums up the SPSC Non-Profit Organization for me, although each member and board member have a role and a title, ultimately, it is all of us that participate and help each other throughout every event and meeting. I had experienced it personally in chairing for the 2015 Rum n' Rootbeer when I realized my debilitating fear of public speaking to a large group, and Bob Graves stepped up and MC'd the entire event! (Thank you, Bob). Also,  this past years 2016 Christmas Party. Wow, so many members came to help set up and stayed to help clean up! I won't go thru all the names, but a big THANK YOU to all of you!!

Our past Commodore Chris Graves and myself had already put in a request for a Wireless Windy. I feel very fortunate as the incoming Commodore to be starting 2017 with the knowledge that the board has approved the device and a timeline of installation by the SPSC Wind Ceremony, quite appropriate, don't you think?  In addition to the Wireless Windy we will also have access to a web cam on Shell Point Beach, a big Thank You to Dave Spitzer, for he will be the one hosting the web cam!

It is my goal to recruit new members for 2017, starting with reaching out to like-minded individuals, such as FSU Sailing Club (Macks' & Wrights' Idea). Also, to use our social media, website and something as easy as a Thank you email to anyone participating in our lessons or attending our meeting for the first time, i.e., guest speakers... (If you can think of a person or organization that aligns with our interests, please let me know).

One other idea for engaging our current members and hopefully new members is doing another summer series or a series of windsurfing races conducive for all levels of Windsurfers.

In closing, I plan to fulfill the role as Commodore to the best of my abilities and look forward to a full year of attending windsurfing events, including a few days in Fiesta Key and 1 week in Bonaire!!

See you at the next club meeting & look forward to seeing you on the water,  "North, South, East, West, Festoons."

Your Commodore, Mary Rolling in service with pleasure,
AKA Commodora


Christmas Party Memories

 



S. Newman Darby, Inventor of the Sailboard, Dies at 88

Reprint from New York Times by RICHARD SANDOMIR DEC. 26, 2016

S. Newman Darby, a sign painter whose passion for boating led him to invent a sailboard that is widely acknowledged as the first windsurfing craft, died on Dec. 3 at his home in St. Johns, Fla. He was 88.

His daughter Wendy Darby Brown confirmed the death.

Mr. Darby created his sailboard in 1964 out of frustration because the waves on lakes, like the one near his home in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., were not big enough to surf on.

His solution was to attach a sail to a surfboard, and the combination worked. But it was flawed: It could not turn sharply or go well against the wind. So he created a universal joint using a nylon rope to link the sail to the board. This enhanced his control of steering and speed.

Mr. Darby’s enthusiasm spilled over into an article he wrote for Popular Science magazine in 1965 about his invention.

“Sailboarding is sailing with a difference,” he wrote. “You get all the fun of handling a fast, responsive boat. You can have the fun of spills without the work of righting and bailing out. And you can learn to master a type of maneuvering that’s been dead since the age of the picturesque square riggers.”

He began a sailboard-making business and started to pursue a patent, but the growing cost of lawyers short-circuited the effort. Around the same time, two other men, Jim Drake and Hoyle Schweitzer, had devised their own version of a sailboard, and in 1970 they obtained a patent. They called their board the Skate before renaming it the Baja Board and finally the Windsurfer.

When Mr. Darby and his wife, Naomi, saw how similar the rival sailboard was to the one that he had written about in Popular Science, they contacted the federal Patent and Trademark Office. They later told American Windsurfer magazine that a top patent official had advised them to write letters to the agency, as well as to the Windsurfer company, to invalidate the patent.

Ms. Darby wrote the letters but was told not to send them out. “The lawyers scared Newman left and right that we would get in trouble,” she said in an interview last week.

Mr. Schweitzer bought out Mr. Drake and expanded the company, Windsurfer International. A lawsuit by the company against a licensee led to the discovery of Mr. Darby’s invention, and to the recognition that it had preceded theirs.

Sidney Newman Darby Jr. was born on Jan. 31, 1928, in Wilkes-Barre. His father owned a sign shop and taught engineering at Pennsylvania State University; his mother, the former Alice Mae Zeisloft, was a homemaker.

Mr. Darby worked for his father and took over the business before starting his own in a large garage next to his home. There he painted signs for Big Boy restaurants, a lumber store and pizzerias, among other businesses, Ms. Brown said.

But all the while he was tinkering with his original invention, and building trimarans, skiffs and catamarans, among other things.

“He was very playful and a prankster,” Ms. Brown said. “He built stilts for the kids to race with. He built modern airplanes and sent a cat off the roof with a parachute — safely.”

In addition to his wife, the former Naomi Albrecht, and Ms. Brown, his daughter, Mr. Darby is survived by another daughter, Cindy Tucker; a grandson; and a brother, Ronald.

The patent controversy was painful for Mr. Darby. When American Windsurfer published a profile of Mr. Drake and Mr. Schweitzer in 1996 depicting them as the fathers of windsurfing, Mr. Darby responded with a letter and a video, containing early footage of his wife and his sister-in-law sailboarding, that argued for his credit. The magazine responded by conducting two lengthy question-and-answer sessions with Mr. Darby and his wife that let them tell their story.

John Chao, who edited the magazine until it ceased publication in 2004, said that was all it took to convince him. “We loved it,” he said in an interview. “We were delighted to bring recognition to him.”

Mr. Darby received further recognition for his invention when the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History in Washington was alerted to his story by Chad Lyons, a windsurfer. In 1998, the museum acquired Mr. Darby’s archive of sailboard sketches, mechanical drawings, notebooks and film, and mounted an exhibition.

The belated acknowledgment did not bring any financial reward to Mr. Darby, who continued to make his living as a sign painter (and who continued to windsurf into his 70s). But, his daughter Wendy said, the recognition was enough: “He just didn’t want someone else to take credit for it.”

His wife recalled in an interview that when Mr. Darby was first experimenting with his sailboard in 1964, he said to her, “This is so much fun, it could be an Olympic sport.” Twenty years later, in Los Angeles, windsurfing became part of the Summer Games.



Club Officers ad At-Large Board Members 2017

Commodore: Mary Rolling
Vice Commodore: Joe Sisson
Scribe: Adam Bennett
Purser: Wright Finney
At large members:
Bob Andrews
Ric Edmonds
Danielle Deprelle
Mac Paschal
Past Commodore: Chris Graves

 

 

"Whitton Effect"






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