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How will 2020 help the future of sailing?

Published on October 11th, 2020

The mission of the Inland Lake Yachting Association is to encourage, develop, promote and foster amateur yachting and yacht racing on the inland lakes of the Middle West of the United States.

The ILYA dependably exhibits the kind of leadership needed to fulfill this mission, with people like Candace Porter consistently lending their guidance for the good of the sport.

With COVID-19 cancelling most championships in 2020, US Sailing went forward with its annual Championship of Champions, having 19 teams across the USA gather in California. As Scuttlebutt has shared the sentiment of staying local this year, Candace offers a view from her station in Wisconsin:

What a season this has been! I find it interesting there is the US Sailing Championship of Champions event this year when so many of us have learned the joy of sailing at home – new race committee structures and methods, new launching procedures, new schedules to decrease gathering, no or diminished social events.

But what an understanding we have now of how much sailing means to us however we practice it.

In the Inland Lake Yachting Association, we held no adult regattas this season. What a heartbreak but at our home lakes, folks were borrowing boats from moth-filled garages, families sailing together, people forming “bubbles” to safely sail. Clubs who had restaurants or successful bars were brainstorming creative ways to survive and enjoy our clubs. So. . .

1) Would folks share how they are different? What did you learn that will make you more active in 2021 even with COVID-19? Little Lake Beulah learned a lot; bet you did too.

2) A Championship of Champions – they may crown a winner in a year when regattas really weren’t held but the real champions are all of us who continued to sail and built home lake fleets, changed our methods to enjoy this sport that has become a lifestyle or most serious avocation for all of us. We all took the time to assure sailing continued in perhaps the most challenging conditions many of our clubs have experienced.

3) Lastly, remember to support our Olympic athletes who are weathering another year of financial outlay. The hurdles are nearly overwhelming dealing with governments and differing policies related to COVID-19, travel nightmares, visas or other legal hoopla. Pick your favorite team and send them a donation — NOT CASH or CHECK. We have all learned touchless! The old dogs have learned new tricks.

Congratulations to all of us who have learned techniques to make our clubs more efficient and streamlined. Happy sailing in 2021.

Please share the lessons of 2020 which will help the sport in 2021. Send to

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