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Author Topic:   Whaler BAKE OFF
jimh posted 12-11-2001 12:24 AM ET (US)   Profile for jimh   Send Email to jimh  
As our Sol is declining into the Winter Solstice, I am thinking about a event we ought to have around the Summer Solstice, a Whaler BAKE OFF!

[ASIDE: A "BAKE OFF" is a competition of sorts, taken from the culinary world and used by computer geeks who stage Fax Modem BAKE OFF's, etc.]

Now this would not be a real competition, but more of a get-together where many people could attend without a huge amount of travel and accommodation hassles, and people could bring their boats--smaller boats--and we could launch them all and hang around the docks and beach, look at all the different boats, and maybe take them all out for a spin and try them out. We don't go anywhere, we just go out for a run in the lake, come back, change boats, have a hot dog, etc.

This event would be held early in the summer, say early June, before the kids are out of school so the lakes won't be full of other boats and PWCs.

We need a venue where you can get a dozen or more boats and trailer without a problem, and where you can get some inexpensive motels nearby for people who want to stay overnight.

And a nice lake where you can go a few miles for a ride. And no rocks or other hazards.

And a park with some charcoal grills to cook.
And a park that allows beer--please--too.

I was thinking something like Higgins Lake State Park. I don't know how full it is in early June for just day-use access. They have a ramp and a beach and a decent parking lot. The water is beautiful. It might be a bit cool in early June, but we won't be swimming, maybe just wading. It is only a few hours from Detroit, a few more from Chicago. Even from Ohio you could get there by early afternoon if you left in the morning.

Limit the boat size to say 18-foot maximum.
People bring their 17-Montauks, their 15-Sports, their 13-Standards, their 16-Dauntless, etc.

Another locale could be more Western Michigan, closer to the Indiana and Chicago folks. I just don't know of a good spot over there.

We need a body of water that will be sheltered enough that chances will be good a 13-foot boat will be able to go out and have a run.

We need a launch area that won't be full by 8 a.m. on Saturday so everyone can get their boat it even if they don't arrive until 2 p.m.

We need a beach or a big dock where we can tie up the boats for the afternoon without running afoul of the boat-dock-park-police.

It would be nice if someone was local to the place to pave the way with any permits or reservations, etc. The local guy does not have to host the event--we use the park or boat ramp for that--so he won't have 100 people over for dinner Saturday.

Everyone brings their own drinks and hot dogs, and maybe a dish to pass like your mom's potatoe salad recipe, etc. We take over a grill or two and get some charcoal going and make hot dogs (or italian sausage, etc.).

Bring your kid or your dog or your wife, too, as long as they like Whalers enough to talk about them for 5-hours straight.

We rendezvous at noon, play with boats, have a big shore supper at 5 p.m., then everyone hauls out and goes home.

What do you think? Would you come to this BAKE OFF?

Tsuriki BW posted 12-11-2001 02:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tsuriki BW  Send Email to Tsuriki BW     

The "Bake Off" sounds like a great idea. I would love to attend with my Dauntless 14 but the trip from Seattle would be a bit tough. If you do it, I will definately be there in spirit!

Good luck!


Georgian Bay Boater posted 12-11-2001 08:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for Georgian Bay Boater  Send Email to Georgian Bay Boater     

This sounds like an excellent idea and a great way to while away the long winter.

I am curious as to the distance to the aforementioned sites from Toronto ?

Thanks in advance.


dfmcintyre posted 12-11-2001 08:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
Jim -

Wellll, not to let the cat out of the bag early, but here goes:

One of the other forum members and I have talked a few times about hosting something up here in Port Huron.

We have:

A city marina that has been (over the last few years) almost empty, due to another private marina opening up and also due to the economy. This marina is 3/4 of a mile up river from a public launch ramp, so shuttling empty rigs up to the large paved parking area is not a problem. It also has full laundry, shower, grill, activity building facilities. The docks are of the floating variety, with water and power. It's well maintained and has attendants on site.

We _may_ be able to reserve almost a whole dock...

Within walking distance are three motels, a party store and last but not least, a Bob Evans!.

If the weather and wind is right, day trips into the lower Lake Huron area are called for. There are two public beaches along the water. If the lake is rough due to wind out of the north, there is the St. Clair River to explore.

We had been thinking about holding it in July, around Port Huron's Classic Car Weekend. The water is decently warm for swimming, skiing, etc, and if the weather truely craps out, theres always the car park to wander around in downtown.

Port Huron is located at the very southern end of Lake Huron, 60 miles north of Detroit.

I don't have the dates yet, but stay tuned....

Don McIntyre

kingfish posted 12-11-2001 09:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for kingfish  Send Email to kingfish     
I overnighted this summer at the City Marina Don mentioned above; it would be a great facility for basing a meet.
Ventura16 posted 12-11-2001 10:04 AM ET (US)     Profile for Ventura16  Send Email to Ventura16     
Jim, I think this is a great idea! It will be a ton of fun and a great opportunity to see/drive a lot of different Whalers. Who knows, it might even change a few opinions about the new Whalers once folks get a chance to drive them. ;-)

I don't know Higgins Lake, but it sounds like a good central location. On the West side of Michigan, White Lake (Whitehall area) would probably be good or maybe Lake Macatawa (Holland area). Silver Lake State Park in Mears would be perfect for the boating part, but there are not as many accomodations nearby...beautiful sand dunes and lighthouse, though.

Don, the Port Huron rendevous sounds great too. I've got a buddy who keeps his Grady-White in the public marina. It is a great facility, and the river gives very easy access to Lake Huron. But I'm not sure about the comfort level for someone in a 13 if it is not a very calm day. Maybe we should plan 2 events...the more the merrier!


Bigshot posted 12-11-2001 10:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Jim in FL a "Bake-Off" would be illegal:) Maybe we'll have a gathering the same weekend and call it a "Fish-On" or "Buzz-On"
Andy Holmes posted 12-13-2001 10:55 AM ET (US)     Profile for Andy Holmes  Send Email to Andy Holmes     

Great Idea. I'm in for either location. I have been to Higgins Lake a couple of times and that would be great. Never been to Port Huron, but sounds great also.


ledfoot posted 12-13-2001 01:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for ledfoot  Send Email to ledfoot     
Jim, great idea. We would attend anywhere in the area. Port Huron would be cool because we could go out into the "big lake" for a little rough-water testing for those that are up to it. It would be an interesting comparison between hull shpes, etc...
MilwaukeeWhaler posted 12-13-2001 02:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for MilwaukeeWhaler  Send Email to MilwaukeeWhaler     
Jimh sounds like fun! Milwaukee could be a great spot for the Bake Off. We have a superb public launch 10 concrete ramps side by side with plenty of dock space, and parking. Not 100 yards away is the Milwaukee Yacht Club (the oldest yacht club on the great lakes-1871). It would make for a great staging place with gas, showers, pool, jacuzzi and plenty of hospitality. In between is a park with grills and plenty of trailer parking. We have a 9 mile breakwater if the seas get rough with plenty to see in the Milwaukee River. There are day trips available with cities to the north and south of Milwaukee just a couple of hours away. As far as Beer.....well this is Milwaukee. There are at least three breweries on the river with docking facilities. "Cheap" hotel accomidations may be 5-10 miles away, however there are above average accomidations within a mile of the dock. The Yacht Club is newly remodeled and proud of it. They host many a party, most recently the World Soling Championships and would probably jump all over the idea. We could have a pretty nice weekend. Just promise me I will be in good standing with my club when the weekend is over!! No matter where the group decided to go I'M IN!
Bigshot posted 12-13-2001 03:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Worls soling many shoes die they sole?
MilwaukeeWhaler posted 12-13-2001 04:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for MilwaukeeWhaler  Send Email to MilwaukeeWhaler     
Those little boats can move. Strap in and hang on. 28 foot bullets.
MilwaukeeWhaler posted 12-13-2001 04:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for MilwaukeeWhaler  Send Email to MilwaukeeWhaler     
The Soling is raced in 41 countries on six continents. Its quickness, manoeuvrability, and tactical effectiveness suit it ideally for smooth-water lake and bay sailing. Although most of its active fleets are located on such waters, major championships are typically conducted at sea where its heavy weather abilities are best tested.
JFM posted 12-13-2001 04:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for JFM  Send Email to JFM     
Jim, sounds like a wiener to me. Regards, Jay
dgp posted 12-13-2001 07:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for dgp  Send Email to dgp     
As of right now, count me in!
mjd65 posted 12-14-2001 12:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for mjd65  Send Email to mjd65     
Tell me when and where?
Would prefer close to camping for the motor home. We go to Silver Lake every year & it's great to keep the Rage in the water for no charge.
Port Huron would be short drive by car but I've always wanted to take the Rage on an extended run ?
Early June sounds good.

Lake Breeze Rage

lhg posted 12-14-2001 03:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
If Jimh will extend the hull size limit to 18'-6", I should be able to attend with my 18 Outrage, unless a smaller lake is chosen that has some HP limits.
JoeH posted 12-15-2001 01:27 AM ET (US)     Profile for JoeH  Send Email to JoeH     
An excellent idea! I would enjoy the chance to share my boat with some out of towners even if they didn't have their boats. Anywhere in the Great Lakes that provides at least tent camping, count us in!
dfmcintyre posted 12-15-2001 08:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
If the interest is enough to hold in Port Huron, rest assured that any size would be welcome. While I don't believe that tent camping would be available on city marina grounds, there is a large ssection of land beside the marina in question that is vacant. Keep in mind that about 100 yards away is one of three motels within walking distance.

While having the meet in June is ok by me, keep in mind that _no_one_ will want to go even for a short swim, in Lake Huron. By mid July it's comfortable.

I'll make a point of contacting the events department at the city and find out more about dates.


Whaletosh posted 02-06-2002 01:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for Whaletosh    
Thought i would revise this with a couple of suggestions.

Gull Lake in Richland, MI. a wonderful clear, deep, 6 mile long, mile wide lake. great ramp on the north end that could accomodate boats much larger than 16 feet. I have seen 25 footers use the ramp with caution. The disadvantages are that ther are not much accomodations nearby. there also isn't a place for a cook out of any size.

another choice would be Holland, MI. We there are p[lenty of hotels, a state park and a private campground for camping. There is also large DNR ramp as well as some municipal ramps. and lots of parks scattered around the lake. If Lake Michigan is smooth we can take down to saugutuck for lunch. If it isn't lake macatawa is fun as well.

David Pendleton posted 02-07-2002 12:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for David Pendleton  Send Email to David Pendleton     
What the hell is a 'Bob Evans'?
Andy Holmes posted 02-19-2002 01:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for Andy Holmes  Send Email to Andy Holmes     
Bob Evans is a restaurant. Food is not bad.

I would like to get this discussion going again regarding the Higgins Lake area. I'll be relocating permanently from central Kentucky to Gaylord, Michigan in the northern end of the Lower Peninsula (can't wait to be home for good!) next month. Is it too early to start setting dates?

LelandBill posted 02-24-2002 09:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for LelandBill  Send Email to LelandBill     
Leland, Mi might be a consideration, we love visitors. 120 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline and 20 miles of deepwater Lake Leelanau right in the middle. Geared up for visitors with camping, hotels, great dining and a casino. The Leland food and wine festival the second Saturday every June may be a good tie-in! A bit further north for most, but worth the trip.
Andy Holmes posted 02-27-2002 08:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for Andy Holmes  Send Email to Andy Holmes     
Second week of June is fine with us. Anyone else have any comments?
roofer posted 03-08-2002 10:20 AM ET (US)     Profile for roofer  Send Email to roofer     
I would be in for Holland or Saugatuck michigan, both have plenty of places to stay as well as a wide range of water types and activities to do away from the water. Let me know if this happens. I have also incuded a link to the saugatuck website. hope to see you this summer.

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