These great sailing days are coming again! Here is Roger Livingston sailing #4096 GHOST in a regatta on Webster Lake, Mass. He writes, "This year's race (August 30th) was sailed in almost perfect conditions... you can see I am getting beat by a 1963 Mariner with original sails. I finished in the middle of the pack and had a great time." That's what sailing is all about, Charlie Brown.
Back in the summer, Jim Schwarz (#2703 IMPROV) raced in the Tuesday night series on White Bear Lake, Minnesota. Jim writes, "On that particular evening, the winds were consistently over 15 knots with gusts well over 20. I raced a Catalina Capri 22 for five years... and always dreaded windy races like this one. Now with the Mariner I love these conditions - it's a blast. We finished first that evening well ahead of bigger boats."
Gary Flomenhoft (SYNTROPICAL II) took part in last year's Wellfleet Regatta in Cape Cod, Mass. According to Gary, "There were three Mariners racing and four Rhodes 19s. The wind died so the guy was probably standing up looking for wind." Gary has a lot of first-class sailing experience, and he gives sailing lessons and charters his Mariner during the summer season from Wellfleet Harbor.
Jan. 26-Feb. 1
I love this picture of Jim Watson's NAUT-A-TOY, #1647 - All you need to do is hop in, raise the sails and cast off the lines. This day was only the fifth or sixth time Jim had taken her out, and he "was still in the process of fixing her up, but she was in fine shape for an afternoon cruise that day." NAUT-A-TOY is one of the rarer keel boats, offering spacious accommodations in the cockpit and cabin with the absence of a centerboard.
How many of us wish we could have our boats at a dock right off our own front yard? While this picturesque summer scene shows a Mariner waiting for a lazy afternoon sail down the river, we can only wait for the return of summer sailing as we dig our Mariners out of the snow in our backyards.
Although typical for this time of year in New England, this sure is a depressing picture! Here is another shot of Roger Livingston's GHOST the first winter he owned her. Roger writes, "Every morning I would look out my kitchen window wondering if spring would ever come. Sailed Saturday (iceboat), but it is not the same." Roger had titled this picture "Long Winter".
This tranquil picture of Deborah Barber's Mariner, #3303, is entitled "Lonely Sailboat". She writes that her boat is "the only sailboat at our marina west of Dardanelle, Arkansas on Lake Dardanelle on the Arkansas River. We had to make our own concrete anchor and have to wade out to her each time we sail." Mariners truly can be found in every corner of this country!
Feb. 23-Mar. 1
This is Bill Larson's LADY ST. CLAIRE after receiving the finish coat of Interlux Brightside "Fire Red". She is one of the few Spindrift Mariners built between 1980 and 1981, after O'Day stopped making Mariners in 1979 and before the molds were bought by Stuart Marine in 1982. The most distinguishing feature of Spindrift Mariners are the double portlights on each side of the cabin.
Here's a picture of #1703, recently bought in Minnesota by Eric Bluhm. The title of this picture is, "New captain gets a look at her first command." Eric writes, "My oldest daughter, Rebecca, 15, got her ASA basic keelboat certificate late last summer, and... it was time for the family to get a boat. Once the snow-bird owner was tracked down, we made a deal and brought it home February 20. Come on summer!"
Time for an action shot! This was taken during the 2008 Nationals held at Surf City Yacht Club, New Jersey. There are three "generations" of O'Day Mariners shown here: the early style boats with an open cuddy cabin (#584, #707, #738, #1091); the early style 2+2s with the "bump top" and forward hatch (#1418, #1535, #1741); and the later style 2+2s with the streamlined cabin fronts (#2537, #3237, #3569). 23 boats total.
This beautiful picture was taken by a fellow named Jason on Prince William Sound in Fairbanks, Alaska. This is officially the farthest north a Mariner has been documented at which to reside! Jason had bought this Mariner last spring and sailed on a two week trip in July and a four day trip in August. His two week journey logged 250 miles (sailing half the time and motoring the next) - he even caught an 80-pound halibut!
It is hard to follow up last week's picture of such a beautiful sunset, but I would say this does the job. This is Mike McCormick sailing #2707 on Sebec Lake in Maine - you may remember it was another picture of his that started off this "Picture of the Week" column back in November of 2008. Be sure and click on #2707's link under "Other Mariners" to check out pictures and more from his five-day cruise on his Mariner.
Mar. 30-Apr. 5
Here is a great shot from last year's Nationals at Surf City. These are two early-style 2+2's, #1880 (Steve Goldberg and Hank Schleckser) and #1771 (Bill Cooper and John Quigley), approaching the windward mark. In the "President's Fleet", Steve would eventually take second prize and Bill came in 8th. This year's Nationals will be held at Riverton Yacht Club from September 18-20th.
Not many Mariners out there have a fixed keel, but NAUT-A-TOY has one. Here, Jim Watson's Mariner #1647 (see the Jan. 26-Feb. 1 Picture of the Week) is about to enter the water to begin a new season of sailing in Toronto, Canada. Be sure to check out his videos listed in the menu at the top of the webpage especially video #2 when he encounters elephants (!) on Sturgeon Lake.
This picture, taken in 1963, is one of the oldest pictures ever taken of an O'Day Mariner. This is hull number 12, skippered (and currently still owned) by Bill Mears on Lake Lanier, Georgia. Bill Hicks, owner of this photo and friend of Bill Mears, "I have owned several boats but the centerboard Mariner is the best one ever."
Here is another older-style Mariner, Mike and Linda Wicklein's MISS L (#200). She is berthed at a marina on the Chesapeake Bay. Mike writes, "This is the first boat that we've owned. I've always enjoyed sailing and boating with friends and have wanted to do this for some time. The opportunity presented itself and now we have our own. There are three other Mariners docked next to us."
Apr. 27-May 3
Rich Weston is the proud owner of Mariner #2290 (the sail number is actually incorrect), and he recently joined the Riverton Yacht Club as well. He writes, "I got SWEET CAROLINE in the water last Saturday for the first time (for me) and it sailed great." He goes on to say that, unfortunately, his wife "got to the Yacht Club too late to take pictures of us out in the river with the jib up."
Here is Bruce Franz and Neil Carey in #3415, the THOMAS J. SWEENEY, rounding marker #9 on the Nanticoke River during the Bivalve (MD) Thursday night races in 2004. This great shot is courtesy of Tim Fuhrmann who writes that "the Sweeney consistently placed at the top of the Bivalve fleet racing against the much faster Tanzer 22s. It got so bothersome to the Tanzer leaders that they voted and created a Tanzer one-design class in order not to be embarrassed by being beaten by the SWEENEY."
The Riverton Yacht Club (New Jersey) had their first Sunday afternoon Mariner race almost a month ago on April 19th, while many more of us Mariner owners were still struggling to get our boats in the water! The dark-blue hull is #1249, SILK PURSE (David Reily) followed closely behind by #2781, O'MITZVAH! (Chris O'Brien). The black-hulled boat is #664 (Harry Mayer) with #2842 in the background.
Bob Wood (Mariner #3121) is 84 years young and is a founding member of the 11-year-old West Coast Trailer Sailing Squadron (WCTSS), located on the West Coast of Florida. This photo is of him sailing on a windy day last November on an outing to Lake Harris in Lake County. Besides owning #3121, Bob also owns an O'Day 20 he keeps in Maine for summer sailing out of the Northport Yacht Club on Penobscot Bay. Thanks to Ron Hoddinott (founder of WCTSS) for the picture.
Tim Harincar has been a professional internet website engineer for 13 years. In 2004, while shopping for a boat to own, the "Mariner was on my 'short list' of daysailers that I was considering... and was doing illustrations of a number of boats/sailplans." He drew this remarkable sailplan of the Mariner with Adobe Photoshop. Be sure to check out one of the other websites he owns and operates - SailBlogs.com.
Rich Weston, owner of #2290 SWEET CAROLINE and member of the Riverton Yacht Club, snapped this picture of Mariners back in the middle of May. They are, starting from the top: #2778 DOUBLE TROUBLE, #2448 SECOND WIND, #3599, #2290, #1534 FROGGER and #919 RAPP-A-TACK. Riverton Yacht Club has one of the largest Mariner fleets in the nation - last year 13 boats participated in the Sunday Summer Series.
At the end of last month, Steve Hock, owner of Mariner #3627, took this picture at Lake Nockamixon, PA. It was, in his words, "A beautiful day for sailing here. Too bad my boat is in Indiana." (But not for long - Steve picked up his "new" Mariner this past Saturday.) This great shot shows #1573 4 SAIL skippered by Ralph Hall, the Mariner Fleet Captain at the Nockamixon Sail Club.
For their January/February 2008 edition (No. 49), the good folks at Small Craft Advisor reviewed the O'Day/Stuart Mariner. They test-sailed #4186, a 2002 Stuart Mariner at La Conner, Washington, and this great shot is one taken during that day. It was thoroughly reviewed and given high marks - it is definitely worth a read. There are a bunch of pictures and lot of insightful quotes by other Mariner owners. Thanks to Joshua Colvin and SCA for permission to use their picture.
This picture of Dave and Leslie Stapleford's #3237 GREYHOUND was taken several moments before a collision during a race. Dave writes that "GREYHOUND is out of commission after losing four feet of her starboard side. It seems that rookies don't understand the proper application of rule 16.2." Repairs are underway and she should be back in the water in a couple weeks.
June 29-July 5
This website was a day late in being updated as my wife and I sailed in ORION from Niantic to Essex and back Sunday into Monday. We rented a mooring at the Brewer Dauntless Marina and stayed overnight at the famous Griswold Inn before heading back this morning, and I shamelessly present this picture as the next "Picture of the Week." ORION is visible on her mooring at the end of the historic Main Street. A wonderful trip!
Mariner #223, FINALLY, has been well cared for since Joe Lallande took ownership of her in 1995. Joe writes, "Stuart Marine restored the floor boards last year, and this year we had the hull and interior repainted, centerboard cleaned and primed, etc." The fantastic paint job is evident by checking out the mirror-reflection of the trailer winch in the hull. Joe sails her on freshwater "Long Lake" in northern Maine.
The Notice of Race for the Mariner Nationals in September has just been posted, so I offer this picture as the next Picture of the Week. This shot is from last year's Nationals as the boats all head for the leeward mark.
Tom Katula, past Cleveland State rower and assistant coach, "wanted a boat that I could row from Cleveland to Key West and be able to live aboard it. The trip involves stopping at cities along the way to work with Habitat for Humanity." His search for a boat ended when he found Mariner #3010, stripped her of all sailing hardware and ballast, and transformed her into a rowboat (named NOT FOR SAIL).
July 27-Aug. 2
This is a scratch-built model made of a Mariner - quite a work of art by Barry Waldman. He writes, "On this particular model, most of the wood is sassafras. I like sassafras because it sands easily...not too hard, not too soft and looks really great after staining. The centerboard and rudder are walnut. For this model I only had the profile and top view we see in the old Mariner ads...no true plans."
This picture of Mariner #3507 is from one of the last O'Day Mariner advertisements (1978) I have been able to find, and it is a beautiful shot. Be sure to check out more pictures and ads by clicking "Old Mariner Ads" at the top menu bar. If you own an old O'Day catalog, brochure or flyer that features the Mariner, please e-mail me as I am always hoping to add to my collection.
Tim and Erin Reiche are the proud owners of this early-style 2+2 named MAGGIE. Tim writes, "Here is a picture of MAGGIE on the shore of Lake Nockamixon for a family picnic. We finally found a suitable motor... we bought it from a gentleman who owned an O'Day Day Sailer who was kind enough to knock $25 off the $125 price tag because we were fellow O'Day owners."
Dave Chambers' #4172 is currently for sale in Michigan, but that hasn't stopped him from using it when he can. He writes, "After 20 years of sailing Potter 15's, O'Day Javelins and the like, the Mariner is just so much more boat. [This] picture was taken by my wife, Thea, last week during a morning sail on South Manistique Lake in Michigan's upper peninsula." He even confides, "I'm not convinced I want to sell her."
Fred Carlson restored his 1972 Mariner ZOOMIE with great results. Here is his pride and joy anchored at Dog Island, Florida. He writes, "We sailed for 30 miles before getting to Dog Island. The sail was great with the wind increasing to about 20 knots giving us an exciting finish to the trip. The sail home was just as exciting with my GPS recording a top speed of 11.5 mph while surfing four-foot waves." Amazing!
Aug. 31-Sept. 6
This picture from 1965 shows #30 MICES, owned by Bill and Joan Hicks in Panama City, Florida. The fixed keel on #30 created problems for ease of trailing, so Bill traded the boat for #1580 which has a centerboard. Bill writes that he "moved up to a CT34 Cutter for 15 years; however, I still have the Mariner. Sold the big boat and am cruising the coast of Florida in the Mariner. It is the best boat a man can have and still live on land."
Scott Dronen's Mariner #3733 was made in 1979, the last year O'Day manufactured Mariners before concentrating on larger boats. This serene shot is of his pride and joy moored on Cotton Lake, near Detroit Lakes, in Minnesota. This is actually his second Mariner - his first was a 1975 model, but he upgraded to this boat two years ago.
Eric Flower, owner of #1871 and a member of the Southeast Connecticut Mariner Fleet, sailed to Flat Hammock (a small spit of beach just north of the West Harbor, Fisher's Island entrance) with a couple friends last month. Eric writes, "We decided it was a good time to eat lunch and get a better look at nearby North Dumpling Island until the sailboats racing in the background sailed through the area."
This is one of the "breezier" moments during the 2009 Nationals at Riverton. The light air which plagued us over the course of the weekend only allowed two races on Saturday and one on Sunday. ORION came in 10th out of 22 - not too bad for a first showing and for a boat meant more for cruising than racing. This picture was taken by Louise McCarthy, ORION's previous owner and whom I finally met in person for the first time this past Saturday!
Sept. 28-Oct. 4
Tracy Tomlinson, of British Columbia, has worked hard to restore and customize his Mariner, #333 TIME O'DAY. Here she is afloat at the Quadra Island Canada Day celebrations of this year. According to Tracy, "She... has carried me all through the Gulf Islands and Desolation Sound area. I get a lot of comments from other folks sailing big yachts about how good looking and sound she still looks. Kinda like her captain!"
John Pacetti writes that he "purchased my Mariner [#1252] back in March and have been sailing her happily all summer. This picture was taken in northeast Ohio on West Branch Lake." The open cabin was the style for the earliest generation of Mariners from 1963-1968. This particular boat was made in 1968, just before they closed the cabin and added two quarter-berths, thus creating the Mariner 2+2 around Mariner #1385.
Jason Idler is the proud owner of MEAGAN (#1731) that was one of the few boats built in Brampton, Ontario. He writes, "Here she is, barely floating off the sandy bottom, at the dock behind my house." Jason came to this boat after six years of windsurfing. The stiffness of the Mariner in heavy winds became apparent to him one Sunday: "After really pushing the boat... I'm the most excited about it I have been."
Steve Hock, owner of #3627 WHITECAP, took this picture at Sandy Point Park Marina (on the Chesapeake Bay near Annapolis) before heading out for sail with his wife during the summer. They "sailed upwind to Baltimore, about 17 miles before turning around (a really fun sail)." Steve is also a professional photographer and was on hand at the 2009 Nationals in Riverton last month.
Oct. 26-Nov. 1
This is a shot taken during the Southeast Connecticut Fleet's Rendezvous earlier this month. It was a blustery day (a Small Craft Advisory was in effect), and we beat up the Niantic River to where we had some protection and calmer winds. Dan Meaney is at the helm of #2024, and Chris Ely, a recent member of the Association joined him as crew. It was a great way to wrap up the sailing season.
Bill Hicks, of Atlanta, Georgia, owned Mariner #30 (see the April 13-19 "Picture of the Week") before eventually upgrading to a 2+2 for more comfortable cruising. This is #1580 with Bill sailing with family on St. Andrew's Bay, Florida. Bill writes, "I have trailed all over the south to lakes and down the coast of Florida from Panama City to Key West. [The Mariner] is the best boat a man can have and still live on land."
The first Mariner Bob Tarantino (now Class Association President) owned was #2537 (now owned by Bill D'Autrechy, Association Treasurer). Bob writes, "When I had it I first used it as a family boat and then got interested in racing. I began racing with my son as crew and when he got older, my daughter took his place." The trend continued after Bill bought the boat - he now races it with his own son and has named her GENERATION GAP.
Peggy MacDonald of Burlington, Vermont, proudly owns Mariner #3086 WINDIGO. This was taken on "Day 3 of our annual cruise Lake Champlain camping trip. Tidying up Windigo and hanging our laundry in the calm and sun of Barn Rock Cove. Our tent was pitched 200 feet above the boat on a precipitous over crop. We woke to a dozen anchored boats also dodging the three-foot whitecaps the evening before."
Steve Clark owns #560 COOL BREEZE, an early style Mariner he keeps in immaculate condition. In the summer of 2005, he and his son took Cool Breeze for an extended cruise at the Isle Royale National Park in Lake Superior - here they are tied up at Isle Royale. There were few other people, and at one point they went two days without seeing anyone else. Their remarkable story is recounted in the 2007 Summer Notice to Mariners newsletter.
Nov. 30-Dec. 13
Andre Barata took his 1967 Mariner to Lake Sonoma in Northern California back in October. He writes that it is "a beautiful lake, not very wide except for the end, close to the dam, but with excellent wind. It was my second time sailing a Mariner. It was my first time trying in-boat camping. I loved it and will definitely try it again in the summer." Although his boat has been renovated, he writes that "there is still a lot of work left. Is any boat renovation ever done?"
Barry Waldman acquired #3306 in June of this year. He named her QUIXOTIC, sailed her all summer, and began restoration projects in October. This particular picture was "taken at the slip with some Photoshop enhancement." He sails QUIXOTIC on Canyon Lake, Texas, about an hour north of his home in San Antonio. He also writes, "Having never sailed a 19-footer, it was a new experience. The more I sailed her the more I liked it. By September, I had fallen in love." Welcome to the club, Barry!
Here is another outstanding shot of a sunset taken by Jason up in Fairbanks, Alaska (see the March 16-22 "Picture of the Week"). There are not many places as beautiful as Prince William Sound in which to sail - the coastline offers countless islands and fjords, a few of which have tidewater glaciers. While Prince William Sound continues to be altered by the effects of the Exxon Valdez disaster in 1989, it nevertheless is a most rewarding and stunning place in which to sail.
Dec. 28-Jan. 3
For the last "Picture of the Week" for 2009, I humbly offer this picture taken of ORION on September 30th of this year. At 6:30 in the morning, the sun had just started to appear, and my father was able to capture this shot of ORION on her mooring. I wish you all a wonderful New Year - keep in touch, keep sending pictures, and don't forget to visit your Mariner every now and then during the winter months to remind her Spring is coming.