Stories from the Alberg 30 Association
The Alberg 30 Association
ALBERG 30 ASSOCIATION BECOMES NSHOF FOUNDING MEMBER
A message from our Commodore
While worthy of its affiliation with the National Sailing Hall of Fame, the Alberg 30 is very much the affordable family boat of the future. Whether you seek competitive one design racing or a boat that can take you anywhere in the world, you need look no further. These boats have strong bones. You can buy a fifty-year-old Alberg today and be passing that same boat to your children fifty years from now. If you take care of her, she will take care of you. In fact, she will outlast you. Join us, the young at heart of all ages, the Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 One-Design Association.
David Cooper, Commodore
50 Years on the Chesapeake Bay
The Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 One-Design Association held a 50-year celebration at the National Sailing Hall of Fame at the Annapolis City dock in 2014. The event included a parade around the harbor on Saturday and an “old-timers” race on Sunday. The Mayor of Annapolis proclaimed August 9, 2014 as “The Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 One-Design Association Day.
In 1964, two Annapolis sailors, Jack Martin and Rolph Townshend, saw the first Alberg 30 delivered from Whitby Boat works in Canada to Arnie Gay’s Yacht Yard. They felt the Alberg 30 was the perfect boat to create a cruising/racing one-design association on the Chesapeake. They quickly struck a deal with Arnie to purchase 10 boats for a sum of $100,000, an impressive amount of money in 1964. So began the Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 One-Design Association and the long-term love affair with the Alberg 30 in Annapolis.
Where are we today?
In 2016, the Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 One-Design Association became a founding member of the National Sailing Hall of Fame. Our individual members rose to the challenge during a membership fund drive late in 2016 to accomplish this generous donation. Considering that we are a small, local, one-design sailing organization, this achievement is significant, since it represents more than half of the annual operating budget of our entire Association.
Racing on the Bay
Two weeks after the initial 10 boats were ordered in 1964, there were ten sailors eager to begin the fiberglass large boat one-design racing fleet. The Chesapeake Bay Yacht Racing Association (CBYRA) gave the fleet a provisional sanction for racing as a one-design class that year and in 1966, with the A30s boasting the largest one-design fleet in the area, they were given active sanction and the racing was solidly in place. It was not uncommon to find as many as 30 Alberg 30s on the starting line on the AYC Fall Series.
In 1965, the International Team races began on the Chesapeake against the Great Lakes Alberg Association. Also, in 1968, The Syronelle Regatta began in Toronto as a reciprocating racing event in which the Chesapeake Alberg Association sends racing teams to compete on Lake Ontario. Both annual events continue to this day.
The Alberg 30 was one of the first classes to join the Annapolis Yacht Club Wednesday Night Races. You can still find many Albergs racing in this event today.
Cruising on an Alberg 30
While there have been four circumnavigations (all single-handed) and numerous blue-water cruises on Alberg 30s, most of the cruising in the Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 One-Design Association is on the home-waters of the Chesapeake. The cruising schedule is jam packed with weekend cruises, a 2-week summer cruise and a very popular week-long fall cruise called “The Wild Goose Chase.” Point-to-Point races often coincide with a cruise destination that allows families to race together and enjoy the pleasure of rafting up with fellow Alberg cruisers.
What keeps us going?
It is often said “you are not just buying a boat, you are joining a family.” Life-long friendships (and marriages) have developed through the Chesapeake Bay Alberg 30 One-Design Association. We hold many events each year that helps us stay in touch with each other. Our publications like our monthly newsletter, the Mainsheet, our annual handbook, our winter educational seminars, and our online forums such as our public forum… http://lists.alberg30.org/listinfo.cgi/public-list-alberg30.org , tell us about upcoming events and provide tips for keeping these old boats sailing.
Video: Old Timers Sail the Chesapeake Bay