Sea Scouts in Ship 300 competed in World competition at the William I. Koch International Sea Scout Regatta (Koch Cup) held in Long Beach California the first week in August, sailing open Pacific Ocean and in protected waters behind a sand bar with an ocean breeze. The Koch Cup simultaneously determines the United States National Sea Scout Sailing Champion, sponsored by “Boat: US” magazine, for the best scoring U.S. participant. Justin Douthat and Carter Busby, children of CYC members, Lori and Derrick Douthat and Don and Jodi Busby, participated. Justin, an Apprentice Rank Sea Scout, former Boatswain of Ship 300 and graduate of the STEM Academy in Knox County, will attend the Michigan Maritime Academy in Traverse City, Michigan this fall. Justin’s boat finished 4th in the first race of the week, which put them in the top bracket for the Koch Cup where the crew finished in the middle of the fleet. It was a situation where the New Zealanders ran away with the races, finishing 1st multiple times and never less than 3rd and that only twice. Carter Busby, an Able Rank Sea Scout (third of four achievable ranks), is the current Boatswain of Ship 300. Boatswain is the highest ranking youth officer in a Sea Scout Ship. Sea Scout units are called “ships” similarly as a boy scout unit is called a “troop.”
Another Ship member, Jacob Hogan, went to Philmont Scout Ranch. Philmont is the Boy Scouts of America's premier High Adventure™ base, which challenges Scouts and Venturers with more than 214 square miles of rugged northern New Mexico wilderness.
The Ship welcomed a new member, Ellie Tyner, who brings sailing experience. Ellie and her dad, John (CYC), were guests of the Ship on an overnight cruise in the spring. Interestingly, 25% of the youth who represented the U.S. in the Koch Cup 2016 were young women (15 women/62 total men and women). Countries with young women in their crews are Norway (1/2), Poland (1/2), South Africa (2/2), Australia (1/2), and Germany (1/2). Likewise, Ship 300 encourages women to become members, and frankly, over the years, some of the ship’s better sailors have been women.
Since no other CYC program participates in international competition, Ship 300 is, in fact, the most far-reaching outreach program of CYC and has been doing this over the past 15 years, starting in 2002 with CYC-member youth, David and Matt McCormick and John Rech sailing in the Koch Cup on Lake Michigan from the Columbia Yacht Club. Ship 300 seeks new members, no experience necessary, who are boys and girls, age 13 & 8th grade to age 21. Ship 300 sails each week year round, weather permitting, and, as part of this program begun in 1912, members maintain their fleet of boats. Thus each member has “sweat equity” in the unit where they learn to maintain a boat and enjoy messing about with boats as well as sailing and other maritime skills. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone George Hubbell at 980-0879.
In mid-July and early August, members enjoyed a family picnic as part of the regular weekly sailing meeting. July’s picnic was attended by 27 and the August picnic, on the eve of the start of school, 12 attended. At the August picnic youth gave reports on Koch Cup experiences and one on his trip to Philmont Scout Reservation, backpacking for ten days during which Mt. Baldy was climbed beginning in the desert near Cimarron, New Mexico. Consensus was the Koch Cup was a worthwhile experience, where our crews said they had good starts in nearly all races, although an excessive amount of protests seemed to be lodged by participants, mostly from other U.S. crews who were disappointingly unsportsmen-like. One crew reported the crew from Poland didn’t spend a lot of time on crossing a language barrier, as no matter what tack their boat was on, they would yell, “starboard.” There surely is humor somewhere in that. But, it’s left to the reader.