Burgee Burgee Flag

April 2020



1 – Final payment for slips, dingy/kayak racks and boat corral due

1 – Advanced member transient slip reservations open

11 – Dock Day Cancelled

30 – Winter slips terminate


Watch email for events as scheduled


Greetings!  It is my sincerest hope that this finds you healthy, safe, and coping with the stress of these difficult days.  In times of uncertainty, many difficult decisions need to be made that used to be unthought of:  Should I avoid going to the grocery store?  Should I avoid going out for walks?  Should I avoid contact with friends and family?  All of these questions are rooted in concern to avoid exposing ourselves and others to a potentially deadly affliction.  We do this out of love and genuine care for others.  Social distancing has become the new normal and is impacting all aspects of our lives and that of the Newport Yacht Club.  Rest assured that your Club will be here for you once we get past all of this.  I miss seeing the vibrancy of our Club when we are in full operation as we are very much a great extended family.

Please understand that even though our Clubhouse is closed, much work continues by the Board and Club staff.  We all are working behind the scenes to assess the impact this coronavirus outbreak has on our members, infrastructure, programs, and finances. I am in frequent contact with our Steward and Committee Chairs to ensure the Club stays abreast of changing conditions to assess potential impact to our planning.  The Newport Yacht Club Board of Directors met on Thursday 26 March in a virtual meeting by teleconference.  Imagine the potential for confusion and inefficiency when 21 people, on the same phone call, discussed matters of significant importance.  I am pleased to report that not only did this board meeting go smoothly, but it was also very successful. We got through an arduous agenda with many motions discussed and approved.  Every vote was at the call of the roll, meaning that each voting member was polled by name for his/her vote that was recorded by the Secretary.  The key outcomes of this meeting sadly included the cancellation of several activities:

  • The remainder of the Frostbite season is cancelled
  • Dock Day is cancelled (work to complete dock readiness for the season will be done by the Float and Dock committee and staff who will observe social distancing guidelines)
  • Easter Brunch is cancelled
  • New Members reception is postponed
  • Commissioning Day is cancelled

It was also approved that the Club seek out members who hold US Coast Guard Masters License credentials to be drivers for our launch Patience and committee boat Volunteer to avoid the cost and uncertainty of hiring launch drivers while we are in this period of uncertainty.  It was very difficult to make these decisions but the board was unanimous in support of doing what we could to ensure member health and safety would not be impacted by a club event.

A plan is being developed by the House chair to be reviewed and approved by the Board for the re-opening of the Club.  In this plan will be the key indicators that would need to align so that an informed decision to reopen can be implemented as soon as possible.  It is anticipated that the Clubhouse will be completely closed through April with only essential staff permitted access to the building.  We will keep you informed of any changes to this.  At this time, access to the parking lot, outside main deck, and docks is still permitted but no restroom facilities or garage access will be available.  Slipholders will be allowed on their boats and all access to the NYC premises must be subject to social distancing guidelines.  The Clubhouse has been completely cleaned and sanitized by our staff and much progress has been made by them readying the Club for the 2020 season.  We all should be thankful for their efforts.

A detailed financial review was completed by the Finance chair and myself which has determined that, with the closure of the Club over a term of varying lengths up to June, our finances are in good enough shape to avoid having to tap into our cash reserves and not adversely affect the approved financial budget.  This should be good news to all members – it gives me reassurance that this coronavirus outbreak will not break the Newport Yacht Club.  We will continue to monitor the Club’s financial health and make appropriate adjustments as may be required. 

Many of you have asked about the Club staff and the impact to them that this virus is having.  The Board decided that our hourly employees will be offered work that needs to be done to prepare the Club for the upcoming season, as long as the work advances the state of readiness of the Club.  Also, it was the desire of the Board that if an employee would benefit greater by filing for unemployment insurance vs working at the Club that they be encouraged to file.  We do not want to lose any of our dedicated employees but their financial welfare is of paramount importance.  Our salaried staff will continue to do their important work while maintaining social distancing so that the Club can be up and running in as short a time as possible once State and Federal guidelines allow.  When the US House of Representatives approves the Coronavirus Relief bill, I will be investigating whether a small business loan, that would be forgivable, would be appropriate for us to look into.

A few more points of interest are:

  • All of the Club perishable food items were donated to the Martin Luther King Center
  • The Junior Activities chair is developing a contingency plan to address the impact that this coronavirus related shutdown will have on the Marine Adventure Camp.
  • The Offshore chair is evaluating its racing schedule and will decide shortly whether to cancel the Mitchell Regatta; registration has been closed.

I know you must be missing the camaraderie of our great Club, as I sure am.  Please be assured that we are working hard to have the Club ready to welcome each of you back as soon as we can.  As always, if you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, please reach out to one of your four members at large or myself at commodore@newportyachtclub.org.  It is important to maintain communications and I will continue to update you all regularly. Wishing you fair winds and following seas,

Tom Rowe, Commodore

Newport Yacht Club


We have complained about how terrible our Springs have been lately, but this is over the top.  With the closure of businesses, stock market hysteria and mandated self-isolation, our personal and private lives are completely turned upside down.

Those of us that have boats still have to do something with them, so it is the intention of F&D to have the south west docks in place by May 1st.  The only thing that could prevent that would be if we are prevented from working on them due to a more restrictive state imposed self-isolation mandate.

If all of the south west docks are not in place, we would be able to put you in another slip, temporarily.

We will be operating with a reduced staff for the early part of the summer season and will be trying alternate launch operations. The services will be available but will not come up to normal levels until the Club re-opens. Stay well and watch your emails for updates. Please see below for important changes to transient slip requests.

Steve Damas Chair, Bob Morin, Roger Hemond, Frank Person III, David Stewart, Peter Herne, Andy Vouras


  • Touch and go: < 31 min (preferably on 30 min loading dock [no charges apply])
  • Temporary tie: 31 min – 5 hours (charges apply)
    • On race nights, some boats come into slips for over 30 min – charges should apply
    • Starting fee: $15, additional $10 per hour
    • Limit of stay is determined by Dock Office (due to other incoming reservations)
  • 1 Night: > 5 hours (charges apply $50 minimum)
  • Maximum length of stay per reservation: 14 nights
    • If a vessel wishes to stay longer than 14 days, a separate reservation request must be made
  • Beginning and after April 01, no more than 3 reservation requests per day per vessel/member
  • $50 holding deposit for confirmed slip assignments (either per reservation request or per Diem)
    • Exception of temporary ties (which are less than $50 minimum per night fee)
    • Canceling reservations requires a 2×2 rule – reservation must be canceled by 1400 hours (2pm) 2 days prior to reservation
    • $50 holding deposit is non-refundable once 2×2 cancellation period has been exceeded unless otherwise omitted (by general manager/dock master) due to inclement weather or other reasonable emergencies

If a reservation is created by dock office AFTER the 2×2 rule effects (due to last minute float plans, last minute reservation requests, etc.) no holding deposit will be taken, and the reservation must be paid in full at time of stay.


  • The Mitchell Memorial Regatta is CANCELLED
  • The Offshore 160 and New England Solo/Twin have been put on hold.  No more registrations will be allowed until we have a handle on what is available as we get nearer to the events.
  • The flare requirements for the Bermuda One-Two have been updated in the Notice of Race which is expected to be made available in November.
  • Please note the press release below regarding the MailASail 2021 OSTAR TWO STAR.

Roy Guay

Chair, Offshore Committee

Gustave White Realty


Unfortunately, the Coronavirus has put an end to our season just as it has for so many other sporting events. Our last race was held on March 8. Unfortunately, the wind was upward of 20 knots which limited us to two races for the day. In spite of a shortened season we managed to get in a total of 8 days of racing – just under the 9 days recorded in 2019. We had a record number of 48 participants, 28 of whom qualified with at least 13 races. 29 racers managed to win at least one race. Two of our newcomers, Dave Read & Susan Beese, broke into the winner’s bracket in what turned out to be a very competitive season. The final results have been posted on the Club website. 3.

Kudos to all of the racers especially the following:

  • 1st Place Overall – -Rick Nebiolo
  • 2nd Place Overall – FJ Ritt
  • 3rd Place Overall – Dave Read
  • 1st Woman – Susan Beese

We plan to get together to celebrate in the not too distant future. In the meantime, thanks to my Committee members FJ Ritt, Bea Grimmitt, & Roy Guay and  to the staff of the Club whose hard work made for a successful, if short, season.

Winkle Kelley, Frostbite Committee Chair


  • We continue to monitor the Corona Virus and assess the impact it will have on the Junior Activities Marine Adventure Camp (MAC) this summer. Optimistically, WE CONTINUE TO ACCEPT CAMPER REGISTRATION which will help for resource planning.  Visit the Junior Sailing website www.newportyachtclub.org/junior-sailing for MAC updates.

  • The Junior Activities Annual Fundraiser and Silent Auction scheduled for May 15 has been postponed until Fall.

Junior Activities Committee

Chair Michael Barszcz, Kate Wilson, Jon Bixby


  • Shortly you will receive an update on the Club opening.  Currently, slip owners are allowed to visit their boats. All other Club facilities, including restrooms, are closed. With regard to re-opening, we are intending to follow the Governor’s rulings on restaurants as they evolve. We anticipate that when initially opened, the Lounge will be members-only with occupancy limited. And, no one will be allowed to lounge in the main deck. However, guidelines may change.
  • The reconstruction of the east deck has been placed on HOLD.
  • We are awaiting bids on replacing the East and West deck canvas.

Jack Ellis

Chair, House Committee


Hi everybody!! Hoping you are all social distancing and staying safe & healthy!! We are fast approaching (hopefully!!) Racing season!!  Keep your eyes on the Club website for the Notice of Race (NOR’s) for both one-design and PHRF classes as well as the Sailing Instructions (SI’s) and the registration form. Stay safe and very much looking forward to seeing you all soon!!


Nancy Parillo

Regatta Committee Chair


The Royal Western Yacht Club of England announce the rescheduling of their MailASail OSTAR TWOSTAR that was postponed in 2020 due to the Covid 19 virus, to a new date of May 9th 2021. We are extremely grateful to our title sponsor MailASail who will continue to support us for this rescheduled event. The 2021 race will continue to run between Plymouth England and Newport Rhode Island as before. A new 2021 Notice of Race, Entry form and World Sailing 2020 – 2021 Offshore Safety Regulations for Cat 1 yachts can all be downloaded from the event websites at www.rwyc.org/ostar/ and www.rwyc.org/twostar/  The Notice of Race outlines all requirements that must be fulfilled in order to compete, and includes contact details for general information, entry and communication with RWYC event management. Additionally, in the NoR are the event Facebook page and the Facebook Group addresses where competitors and potential competitors can interact with one another. Neil Dunkley, Race Director MailASail 2021 OSTAR TWOSTAR RWYC.

Gustave White Realty

If you have something you’d like to share with the Club membership in the Burgee, please send your submission to: communications@newportyachtclub.org for review and consideration.   

Gustave White Realty


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