by Bob Appleton
This festival is designed to foster the recreational use of trailable yachts throughout Victoria and will bring together, trailable yacht owners and their families, for a weekend of that pleasurable activity known as ‘mucking about in boats’.
The weekend kicks off at 1pm on today with a briefing which will be followed by a 'Tag-along' cruise to the Royal Geelong Yacht Club through the little used North Channel.
Following the cruise, boats will pull up onto the sand at Eastern Beach, where fun and games, such as beach cricket and sand castle building will follow! There will also be some Access dinghy sailing to include the Round Robin Championship for the ‘Sheep Station’ trophy.
Then at 1900, (7 pm to the landlubbers) a social get together and BBQ at the Royal Geelong Yacht Club is planned, with most entrants spending the night in the RGYC Marina.
At 1000 on Sunday morning, the fleet will sail back to St. Helens for a free morning and lunch at the Geelong Trailable Yacht Club.
During the afternoon, demonstrations and displays will take place from 1pm onwards and the general public is welcome to attend and watch the boat judging.
Visitors to RGYC will enjoy a spit roast meal at 5.30pm in the Branscombe Room at Osborne House followed by an information evening at 7.30pm.
Richard Hawkins (OAM), the author of the ‘Creeks & Harbours series of books, will be the guest speaker, talking on issues relating to recreational boating, cruising opportunities, the role of clubs and class associations, the role of Yachting Victoria and other related issues.
On Monday, an Anzac Day Service will be followed by a visit to the Naval Museum in Osborne House Stables and the Festival will close at 1200 on Monday.
There are three different categories for trophies for the best presented boats: Best presented boat, safety, set-up and accessibility; best set up boat for cruising; best presented boat overall. Two lucky entrants will also win one year's insurance to the value of $500 from Club Marine Insurance.
Many alternate activities have been arranged, including tours to local wineries, a kids adventure tour and a tour of Geelong's highlights.