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Cruise Report: Early Bird to St. Michael's

Post Cruise Report – Early Bird to St. Michaels

Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum (CBMM)


Cruise Leaders : Al and Liz Sutherland aboard S/V Outward

Dates of Cruise: Friday 5/3/2024 – Monday 5/6/2024


The Early Bird Cruise has a checkered reputation due to the unpredictable weather in early May. This year was no different from many of the previous Early Birds. Rain was predicted throughout the weekend.


Despite the poor weather predictions, we had a good number of boats and crews lined up:

- Al & Liz Sutherland (S/V Outward)

- Amelia Whitman & Jeff Nachreiner (plus pooch Kobe) (S/V Rumrunner)

- David & Rachel Dawson (plus pooch Honey) & Guest Crew, Jody Gibson (M/V Festina Lente)

- Joe & Pat Casey (M/V Otter)

- Justin, Lucy & James Hardeman (S/V Stella Maris)

- Erick & Maggie Chiang (M/V Au Lapin Agile II)


Friday’s weather, as predicted, was rather difficult. Winds were strong and against us the entire trip. The only folks who sailed were Amelia and Jeff, who arrived quite late (9:30 or 10:00) but that was their planned arrival time. All boats but Erick and Maggie arrived on Friday. We lined up dinner reservations

in town at “The Fools Lantern”; fun restaurant with beer and wine ‘on tap and serve yourself’ along with a good selection of tapas. Unfortunately, the Hardeman’s son, James, developed an ear infection and they were concerned about cruising and decided not to sail; however, they joined Sutherland’s and Casey’s for the Friday night dinner via land yacht.


Saturday was not too rainy and several of us got to walk around town and have lunch at Carpenter’s. The Chiang’s arrived later in the afternoon. The traditional Happy Hour was held in a protected, covered patio at the Steamboat Museum – as always with delicious, heavy appetizers. Guests of Amelia and Jeff, AJ and Christine joined us as well. We ended the evening visiting on board Festina Lente and Au Lapin Agile II.


Sunday’s trip home had very light SE winds. Rain was predicted, but we only saw some spotty showers. Amelia & Jeff sailed home. The rest of us motored. Caseys stayed an extra day and came home Monday through pea-soup fog covering.


Planning for next year’s Early Bird will take some thought. We should still make long range plans to go to St. Michael’s; however, if we get early, bad weather predictions we could change it to have a day sail to Thomas Point and a picnic at the Club pier. Of course, this change of plans is dependent on any planned Club one design regatta.

Rum Runner at anchor (Amelia & Jeff's Tartan 40)

Early Bird Crew (less Liz taking photo)

Otter (far left), Festina Lente (center) Outward (far right)

Flooding in St. Michaels

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