Most importantly and well deserved, thanks and recognition first go to Chris for his leadership in creating NAASA and making the fleet what it is today. His commitment and energy here has enabled all of us to better enjoy the sport of sailing.
The Board has some new blood and is excited to get sailing again! We have put together a great outline for the season ahead and are looking forward to working with the fleet to continue with the excellent high performance racing and comradery we love so much. Based on many conversations, feedback from surveys and some checking the wind, the Board has distilled these objectives and while you may notice a few changes from years past, the goal remains unchanged. The mission of NAASA is to promote competitive and athletic adult sailing in Narragansett Bay!
The topics below outline the high level plan for 2024. More specifics will be provided before springtime to help teams prepare for a strong season!
Based on decidedly positive feedback, the schedule below is similar to previous years. Confirmed dates, NORs, and registration links will be published ahead but the below is good to block off the calendar!
● June 8-9: Wickford Regatta
● June 22-23: NAASA #1 (one clinic/one race day)
● *June 28-July 5: F18 Worlds, Costa Brava ESP (*recognized but not NAASA) ● July 13-14: Newport Regatta
● July 20-21: NAASA #2
● August 17-18: New England 100
● August 24-25: NAASA #3 RI State Champs
● September 7-8: Season Closer (format TBD)
● *September 23-28: F18 Nationals, Richmond CA (*recognized but not NAASA)
The NAASA organization will prioritize fun and high level racing, including the provisioning of insurance required to host events. NAASA will continue to advertise and recruit new teams to compete, supported by fundraising and grant programs. Final costs, pitch decks, and more will be made available prior to early spring. Please continue to share the good energy and seek out supporters of the fleet effort! Also please consider donating to NAASA before the end of the year!
● Series/Event Registration. In order to arrange predictable and high quality racing, NAASA will charge registration fees for events while offering a discount for series participation vs a la carte entries.
● Fleet Sponsorship/Support. NAASA maintains its 501c3 status and will be actively soliciting tax-deductible donations and corporate sponsorships to subsidize event and fleet expenses. Title sponsorships and naming rights for each NAASA event offer increased exposure and help provide additional fleet perks such as drone footage and expanded off-the-water activities.
● Team Sponsorships. The boat wraps and sails were a big hit in 2023! NAASA will provide a refreshed pitch deck and encourages teams to seek out individual sponsorship to support racing expenses. NAASA will provide guidance but will not be managing relationships or these funds directly.
● Grant Boats. The three grant F18s previously operated by NAASA have been passed to the SSF. This organization focuses exclusively on boat donations and team enablement, and is a complimentary partner to the NAASA effort. Good news - these boats and teams intend to continue racing in the NAASA Series! And the SSF is actively seeking out other F18s and applicant teams to join the fleet! NAASA will continue to market and provide guidance to interested candidates.
Probably the most important section of this email - all NAASA activity relies on volunteers and supporters to get things done. The Board is stoked to lead the way but absolutely needs help if we’re all to have the best season possible. Many local classes make volunteering a mandatory part of fleet participation and we are entertaining a similar rule or buyout option. Before we get to that point, please reach out if you (or friends!) are interested in any or all of the activities below, or if you have other areas of interest to propose!
● Event Chairs. Encourage registrations, plan debriefs, or run the RI State Champs! The job responsibilities will vary by event but is a requirement for successful race weekends. (Big thank you to Joe for already stepping up for the NE100!)
● Social Chairs. Wrangle the fleet for post debrief debriefs at dinner and the bar… ● On the water support. Race committee members, mark/safety boat duty, photography, etc.
● Sponsorship development. Support NAASA by bringing event sponsors, award donations, and other perks that benefit the fleet.
Lots of information and ideas here, with much more to come as we get into 2024. Until then, the NAASA Board will be hosting a call for the fleet to review the above plan and get collectively pumped for some sailing. This will take place this Thursday 12/14 at 5pm. NAASA members please look out for a separate invitation and interested newcomers please reach out directly for more information.
Kaleigh, Marina, Lars, and Tripp