Time to Give Thanks
Published on November 22nd, 2016
by Don Finkle, RCR Yachts
This is the time of the year when many clubs and sailing organizations hold their annual awards presentation dinners. The focus is usually on the winning boats and crews and the accomplishments of the sailors. What is often forgotten, or at least under-recognized, are the contributions of all those who made it possible for the sailors to have their fun in the sun.
The race committee volunteers come first to mind but they are far from the only ones who deserve our thanks. There are the scorers, the event organizers, the handicappers, measurers, those who maintain the websites, all the people who run the regattas, and on down the line. At major events there can be almost as many people afloat and ashore running the show as there are sailing in it.
On top of this, the vast majority of volunteers devote their time for free, and often absorb their personal expenses to boot. We all know how precious our free time is, and so is theirs.
Let us all take a moment to reflect on the importance of what they do and the next time we see them give a word of thanks. I can tell you how much it means to a race committee when the competitors say thanks after they have crossed the line in the last race of the day, or when they thank the volunteers before they pack up and head for home.
Some recognition at the awards dinner is certainly in order as well, and while they will never ask for it, they surely won’t mind it.