We had a full house last week for our February meeting and packed a ton of activity into a couple of hours. We are pleased to announce we have elected a full slate of new officers to serve for 2015 including:

(L-R) Gabi Schwaiger, Valerie Rhodes, Kathleen Brown, Bonnie Gibson, Brenda Highley, Wayne Wallace (not pictured Shannon Harshman)


Commodore:  Valerie Rhodes

Vice Commodore:  Gabi Schwaiger

Treasurer:  Wayne Wallace

Secretary:  Brenda Highley

Membership:  Shannon Harshman

Director:  Kathleen Brown

Director:  Bonnie Gibson


Special thanks go to outgoing Commodore Annette Cook and Treasurer Nina Manning who have served WORSA for many years and have kept WORSA in good standing in the yacht club community. 




KC Matlock talks about electric outboards

Our February meeting featured mini-presentations by 4 of our own members who were instructors at the recent Women's Sailing Convention. Cindy Wynne gave a comprehensive overview on the importance of critical safety equipment on board including self-inflating PFDs (equipped with whistles, strobe light, chapstick and sunscreen), EPIRB & GPS devices, handheld radios and more. 


Captain KC Matlock shared useful information to simplify managing a dinghy and outboard. KC went so far as to bring along her own inflated dinghy and electric outboard for a truly hands-on experience. 


Captain Susie Campbell presented several ways for WORSA to implement our mission of helping the community by sharing our love and access to the water with others. 

Cindy Wynne reviews critical safety equipment

She suggested ways we can help in the short term by supporting the Olive Crest sails and upcoming April regatta and planted the seed for several future projects. 


And Monique Vigeant closed out our program by sharing her story of taking classes and participating in sailing programs both in Orange County and around the world including an extensive stint as a Tall Ships sailor. She assembled a useful list of affordable sailing opportunities for people learning how to sail or wishing to improve their skills. Thank you to all of our fantastic presenters!


WORSA member Brenda Highley's efforts to save our ocean on a recent Catalina crossing

Since relaunching WORSA in January, almost 50% of our members are new to the organization. We thought it would be helpful to share the origins of WORSA for our newer members. 

WORSA was started in 1979 at the Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club as a vehicle for local women to participate more actively in the sport of sailboat racing. In 1990 WORSA was recognized as an active, voting member of the Association of Orange County Yacht Clubs (AOCYC) and the Southern California Yachting Association (SCYA.) 

WORSA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit who's mission has expanded from supporting women racers to encouraging women sailors in all capacities including racers, cruisers, day sailors and novices. WORSA also enjoys a long history of giving back to the local community through charity regattas, trash pick-ups and other philanthropic efforts. Visit our website or Facebook page to learn more about WORSA or email us for more information.



The good news is the relaunch of WORSA is off to a great start. In the past 6 weeks, 
we have doubled our Facebook followers and tripled our membership. We have hosted three on-the-water events since our January meeting and have several fun and educational programs in the works. Last week we elected a newly energized WORSA Board full of fresh new faces. 

So....what's the bad news? To continue receiving The Whistle and to participate in future on-the-water events, you must be a current member of WORSA by paying your annual dues of ONLY $50. You can join now by clicking here to fill out membership form and pay by credit card online. Future newsletters will only be sent to current members. Membership has it's rewards! We hope you'll stay with us!




It was less than two months ago that a fierce storm, driven by powerful winds and 10 foot swells, barreled through Avalon Harbor in Catalina over the busy New Year's holiday. When the sun rose the next morning, several vessels were on shore, some had sunk, many sustained tremendous damage, and two lives were lost.


Daniel Sipes rode out the whole frightening event aboard his 34' power boat, Tamara and wrote a detailed account of the event which quickly went viral amongst the Southern California boating community. Daniel will be our guest speaker at our March 10th meeting and will share his story of that evening from the perspective of someone who literally weathered the storm. He will also share some photos of the storm and it's aftermath. And most importantly, what are the lessons learned from this tragedy and how could they have been mitigated or avoided?


Daniel has been an active boater his entire life. He enjoys sailing, powerboating, fishing, SCUBA and freediving/spearfishing. After graduating from college he restored an old Seafarer 31 sailboat and sailed it solo from Mission Bay Yacht Club to Hilo, Hawaii, through the Hawaiian islands then to San Francisco, up to the Delta and finally returning to San Diego. In order to more frequently visit Catalina he and his wife purchased a 34 Meridian power boat and make the trip several times a year with their children.  You won't want to miss this program!




WORSA now has a current calendar of events posted on our website. Here's a couple of upcoming events to add to your calendar:

  • Sunday, March 15th - The Jeffrey Adam  Memorial Regatta at DPYC benefiting the Dana Point Harbor Youth Foundation. Volunteers are needed for registration, t-shirt sales, auction, raffle and more.
  • Sunday, April 19th - The annual Anchors Away Youth Services Regatta -  Bring a dish to share for the BBQ, skipper a boat full of kids for the regatta or bring your friendly dog down to play with the kids. Email Susie Campbell if you'd help with BBQ and email Midge Patrick if you can skipper or crew on a boat.
  • WORSA Safety On The Water event - Date T.B.D.  



This is the postcard we created to announce the relaunch of WORSA to 200+ women sailors from throughout the state at the 26th Annual Womens Sailing Convention held earlier this month. Special thanks to WORSA member Patti Diener for her work on the postcard. 

Front Side
Back Side
Women's Ocean Racing Sailing Association
P.O. Box 2403
Newport Beach, CA 92665