Akuna Bay Cruising Club

Commodore's Annual Report - Year 2010/11

Club Fun at Akuna Cafe - Jan 25th © ABCC 2008

Club Fun at Akuna Cafe - Jan 25th

Monday 18 July, 2011

Well what another great year for the Akuna Bay Cruising Club! We've had a busy year of social and educational events for Members to participate in both at the Marina and on the water. Judging by attendances at most events we've had something for everyone - I hope you've enjoyed your Membership in 2010/11.

At the end of the year I am pleased to report on another successful year for the Club. Your Committee laid out a calendar of great social events with something for members to participate in each month. I would like to thank you all for your support and participation in these events which have again provided many social gatherings for our broader membership and friends. I know it has been great to get together and catch up on a regular basis with each other during the year. A problem from time to time was inclement weather which affected some events, in particular the Beach Ball for the second year running. Sadly some of the extreme weather this year had a much more serious impact on people's lives around Australia.

We have been fortunate to have a great Committee in place during the year and I would like to thank them for their ideas, energy and expertise in managing the Club's affairs. We conducted nine Committee meetings during the year where we had a healthy exchange of ideas and much discussion. At the AGM we will have some of our longer standing Committee members standing down for a well-earned break so I would particularly like to thank them for their substantial contributions to the Club's success over the years, in particular Vice-Commodore Kim Murray.
In looking back over the year we conducted 16 organised events, at least one every month. On our website www.akunabay.org we have a record of these good times in the photos and comments arranged by Keith Turner. Thanks again Keith for putting such a good compilation together and for managing the website! The social networking through the Club has also been strong through other more informal social occasions, such as marina arm parties, Mafia lunches and other get-togethers between Members during the year.
As well as social events two other priorities have been pursued by your Committee:
- providing training opportunities to help improve the seagoing capabilities and safety awareness of Members and
- raising funds to support medical research and charitable causes addressing health issues which have affected various Members in recent years.
One of the Committee's initiatives was to arrange with D'Albora's management to have a sign erected at the front gate to the marina under the D'Albora's sign. The message is "Home of the Akuna Bay Cruising Club / www.akunabay.org". I think the sign looks great and I would like to thank Brian Budden for his professional design of the sign and in refining the "anchor" logo. The purpose is to increase awareness of the Club with other boaters and visitors to the Marina and also invite usage of the Club's website.

We kicked off the new boating season with an enjoyable Season Opening Dinner Dance held in the Cafe where Joe provided a spectacular "braised meats" buffet. We heard from Marina Manager Garry Crowhurst and Joe who updated us on developments and plans for the marina and the Cafe. Unfortunately the inclement weather meant that on-water events over the weekend were largely cancelled. Our first Cruising lunch for the year was arranged by Warren Armour at the Berowra Waterview Restaurant on November 13 with a convoy of boats venturing to Berowra and overnighting on the newly refurbished marina.
The ABCC Christmas Party was held on Saturday December 11th at the Marina's upstairs "Cielo" function centre and was another magic afternoon with good food complemented by great weather. The catering by the team at "Cielo" provided a traditional buffet Christmas lunch for the 40 plus Members and friends in attendance. Unfortunately "Cielo" had a short life as a restaurant and now operates solely as a function centre.

In January the Australia Day events became complicated because the holiday on the 26th fell on a Wednesday. As we did last year a BBQ on the Marina on the prior Friday night was our main celebration and a lot of "Orstralyana" was on show. Prizes for renditions of Ozzie poetry went to Kim Murray, Brian Budden, Terry Arnold and Bob Taylor. Best dressed boat on Saturday afternoon at the Refuge Bay drinks on the beach went to Stephen, Catherine and Alexander Frendo.

On March 19 we held the Blue Beach Ball but it was again re-scheduled due to expected bad weather - it was horrible! While every effort has been made over the last two years to get this event held on Hallett's Beach we must put safety and practical considerations first. This year the sun emerged briefly around midday only for a mini-cyclone to arrive and deluge us through the afternoon. The end result was that we had some separation with the "early birds" all rafted up at Hallett's remaining out in the rain (but partying on like true soldiers) and the rest of us (over 40 in attendance) partying on in the Clubroom, which was transformed into a beautiful blue oasis thanks to Marcia Southern and her helpers again.

Of course the Easter weather is never helpful either and we were able to enjoy a convivial social event on Refuge Beach on Easter Sunday in between some wet days. Due to rain the ABCC Golf Day was postponed until August. I think May is a special month as we have two iconic events. The Trivia Night hosted by Frank and Janet Gardner was this year themed as a Hollywood night with our guest director Joanne Stokes. Thanks for your hard work in bringing together an excellent night of fun! It was great to see so many Members dressed as classic Hollywood characters! And the competition was fierce during the rounds with a mob from H Arm eventually successful. A week later Saturday was a glorious day (but a bit windy!) for our annual cruise up to Peats' Bite where boats either berthed at the marina or anchored offshore. This is a magical part of the Hawkesbury and the hospitality and fine dining offered by Tammy and her team again made for a wonderful day.
Again the weather gods frowned on Long Weekend in June so boats were unable to raft-up as in previous years but enjoyed various moorings. Christmas in July was again held at Kaiser Stubn up near Mona Vale Rd. Their heated function room provided a cosy venue for a great winter afternoon lunch.

Each year the Committee selects a charitable cause for which we raise funds. Last year we nominated women's cancer as our cause and donated a total of $1,300 split between the National Breast Cancer Foundation and the Sydney Breast Cancer Institute. This year's cause became men's cancer and we selected the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia. Altogether we raised over $900 so the Committee subsequently approved a donation of $1,000. Well done to everyone and thanks for supporting such a worthy cause! This continues our program of assisting research into cancer that has affected the lives of some Members and friends.

An event which provided an opportunity for us boaties to help those less fortunate was the "Cruise for a Cure" on Sunday February 27. Organised by the Cure Our Kids Foundation and SBM Maritimo Sydney this event was designed to encourage boat-owners to use their boats to assist kids fighting cancer and their families to enjoy a fun day on the water. Three Club boats participated in the day.

In October 2010 a group attended the Diesel Maintenance course run by Brookvale TAFE to gain a thorough understanding of diesel engines. As most of us rely on diesel engines when boating this was very relevant and was felt to be a sound investment. It was organised by our Vice-Commodore Kim Murray - thanks Kim!

An offer from our former Committee Member and current Member David Bornstein to talk about the Volunteer Marine Rescue operations and marine radio issues created an Information Night on May 27 which was eagerly attended. In November we had a CPR update course and in June we had the First Aid Proficiency course run by the Surf-Life Saving Association. These educational activities support better and safer boating through improved skills and knowledge.


The Club currently has 65 boats and around 125 people as Members. I invite you all to participate as fully as you like in the activities of the Club or just enjoy Club benefits such as the Fuel discount and Club Moorings. We continue to strive to be a Club focussed on enjoying each other's company and maximising the safety and enjoyment of our boating activities.

Happy and Safe Boating

Jeff Sheehan


Mobile: 0412 251 194