Minnetonka Yacht Club Commits to Sailors for the Sea Gold Level
Clean Regattas Certification for
Zinn Family Realtors 2011 ILYA Championship Regatta
Melges/North Sails Zenda Team initiates steps to make
a model regatta for lake conservation
Minneapolis, Minn. & Newport, Rhode Island - June 17, 2011 - Sailors for the Sea, the only ocean conservation nonprofit focused on the sailing and boating community, is proud to announce Minnetonka Yacht Club has taken the Sailors for the Sea Clean Regattas Pledge for GOLD level Clean Regattas certification of the Zinn Family Realtors 2011 Inland Lake Yachting Association (ILYA) Championship Regatta being held in August. The commitment ensures environmental-centric policies and procedures are put in place throughout the event.
Clean Regattas certification provides independent, third-party verification that a yacht club, sailing program, or regatta is environmentally responsible, and is doing its utmost to protect and restore the waters upon which people sail. This program is an effort by Sailors for the Sea, in conjunction with committed participants, to reduce our impact on our oceans and coastal waters.
"This year's ILYA Championships is committed to serving as a model for responsible sailing," said Chris Mancini, program director, Sailors for the Sea. "We are thrilled to support the Minnetonka Yacht Club throughout the Inlands in their efforts to educate participants on environmental protection. Working with the club, Sailors for the Sea will help to formalize their conservation efforts and help promote responsible environmental behaviors among the club's members and the regatta participants."
The ILYA Championship Regatta started in the Twin Cities in 1897 and boasts some of the top champion sailors in the world, including America's Cup sailors, Olympic Gold and Silver Medalist sailors, and even head coaches of the U.S. Olympic Sailing team and U.S. Junior National Team. The 11-day regatta will determine the top Scow class racers in the United States in four classes of yachts - A (38 feet), E (28 feet), C (20 feet) and MC (16 feet).
"We're thrilled to have the support of Melges/North Sails Zenda team to make this possible," said Rick Kotovic, regatta co-chair. "Our hope is that this will set an ongoing precedence and be a model of many 'clean' initiatives for the MYC and all 51 ILYA member yacht clubs."
Minnetonka Yacht Club and the ILYA will undertake several efforts in their Clean Regattas campaign, including:
- Recycling at all sites during race weekends, and throughout the season
- Providing all race participants with aluminum water bottles donated by Melges Performance Sailboats/North Sails Zenda
- Providing water stations to help reduce or eliminate single-use plastic bottles
- Use of biodegradable cups at post-regatta parties and dinners
"We constantly see the misuse of plastic and other things that pollute our waterways," said Andy Burdick, president of Melges Performance Sailboats. "It's a serious issue of growing concern, so getting behind an effort like this is important for the sport we love and the business we're in. We need to be in the forefront of the awareness for sailors so we can start making a real difference."
By making the clean regatta pledge, regattas, yacht clubs, and sailing programs commit to protecting clean waters and shores. The Sailors for the Sea's Clean Regattas program is a third-party certification program that helps participants achieve higher environmental standards. Participants vow to fulfill, and encourage others to fulfill, the goals and requirements of the program, and to work to protect oceans and locals waters for the use and enjoyment of this and future generations.
With three levels of certification (Bronze, Silver, and Gold) available, participants select their level of engagement, and work to fulfill the related certification requirements by first forming a Clean Regattas committee for the event or a permanent committee for all club/organization governance and events to oversee the certification criteria. The criteria relates to:
- trash and recycling collection and disposal
- oil spill prevention
- green cleaning products and bottom paint usage
- bottom cleaning and boat maintenance
- global warming and carbon offsets
- biofuel conversion
- use of recycled materials in regatta awards
A Clean Regattas designation by the Sailors for the Sea organization means all competitors agree to abide by Clean Regattas Certification Level requirements. Sailors for the Sea provides support, materials, and the final certification that a club or event is a Clean Regatta. Found worldwide, the Clean Regattas program is available for all interested yacht clubs, regattas, and sailing programs. By participating in the program, clubs and regattas can realize a range of immediate economic benefits including:
- saving money by reducing reliance on plastic bottles, fossil fuels, and disposable products
- getting discounts on environmentally friendly products through the Clean Regattas program
- reducing excess spending by anticipating regulations and avoiding abrupt and costly changes due to new laws and related cleanup efforts
- attracting new sponsors, donors, investors, and foundations for non-profit clubs through the positive awareness of the Clean Regattas efforts
About Sailors for the Sea
Founded in 2004, Sailors for the Sea is a nonprofit organization that educates and empowers the boating community to protect and restore our oceans and local waters. For more information or to participate in any of the Sailors for the Sea programs, or to become a member and support the organization, visit www.sailorsforthesea.org.
About Minnetonka Yacht Club
In August 1882, the Minnetonka Yacht Club by-laws and sailing rules were drawn up at Lookout Point. Starting with 25 members, the sailing was social and easy going. Within 5 years, the fleet and membership had more than doubled. The original multi-level clubhouse was built in 1890 on Light House Island, where it burned down in 1943. The replacement clubhouse was built ion the island where it stands today. The large 3-story clubhouse, built on Bug Island, burned down in 1904. Sailing was temporarily suspended during World War I (1917-1919), with the A and C fleets being the survivors. In 1923, the E class was introduced. However, it didn't catch on until 1945 after the Depression and World War II.
The 1950's saw the club move more towards competitive sport and less social. Today, the club has more than 500 members and hosts the A, E, C, M17, MC, Yngling, J22, Laser, X, Optimist, Open Fleet, and Classic Boats. Visit http://www.minnetonkayachtclub.org for more information.
Benefits of Clean Regattas - Make the Pledge