News Releases

Sail Nova Scotia and the Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic (CSCA) are excited to announce Stephen Waldie as the provincial skiff development coach.  Stephen brings 15 years of high-performance experience as an athlete and a coach to his new role. Hailing from Montreal, Stephen will be working with Club Race Team coaches across the province and leading the Nova Scotia Sailing Team program.  Stephen will be joining a team of CSCA coaches which includes national coaches such as Jack Hanratty (Rugby Canada), Patrick Cody (Row Canada), Kevin McIntyre (Atlantic Division of Canoe Kayak Canada), Csom Latorowvski (Canoe Kayak Canada), and Kryzysztof Kierkowski (Sail Canada).      Stephen is looking forward to growing the base of sailing athletes in Canada and encouraging young sailors to pursue high-performance racing.  “I am passionate about sailing as a competitive sport, and my goal is always to inspire more young people to pursue high-performance sailing,” said Waldie.  Stephen was the coach for Team Canada at the 2018 and 2019 Youth Worlds and named the Quebec Sailing Coach of the Year in 2019.  “All of us at Sail Nova Scotia are excited to have Stephen Waldie join our team. We are looking forward to seeing the impact he will have on athletes and coaches in the sailing community,” said Frank Denis, Sail Nova Scotia Executive Director. Stephen’s official start date with Sail Nova Scotia is February 1, 2021.  For more information please contact Frank Denis, Sail Nova Scotia Executive Director [email protected]
Thursday, 19 November 2020 11:28

Chris Harrington - BBYC Volunteer of the Year

Meet Chris Harrington - BBYC's wonderful Volunteer of the Year!Chris has been the kind of volunteer you could really count on in 2020. He cared about the members' experience during this difficult season. Chris was instrumental in the club experiencing a very positive summer by engaging members in activities during these trying Covid times. His insight and enthusiasm for keeping our members engaged and united created many opportunities for us to be innovative and create safe and engaging activities. Chris was always there to lend a helping hand whether it be repurposing furniture to create a wonderful outdoor seating area, or organizing a take-out lobster supper. Chris takes the time to help his fellow boaters and club staff members and cares about new member experiences and making BBYC members feel welcome. Chris has dedicated many hours in 2020 to BBYC. He oversaw the completion of the fuel dock, repaired equipment and fixed the learn to sail dock. He could even be found mowing the lawn. His leadership stood out during a very challenging year as we grappled with Covid -19 restrictions. For these reasons and more we nominate Chris as volunteer of the year 2020 for BBYC.
Hubbards Sailing Club would love to nominate Maria Fitzgerald for Sail Nova Scotia’s Shooting Star award. Maria Fitzgerald has been a joy to have around the sailing club, ever since her debut in our Wet Feet program at age 5. A regular at HSC, we happily welcome her back year after year. Maria had a busy summer, balancing work, sailing, friends, and family commitments. Despite this, she always had an encouraging word for every coach and sailor at the club. She can often be heard on the water giving a pep talk to some of the younger sailors or letting the coaches know what a great job they are doing. This summer, Maria helped address some of the unique challenges related to COVID. She was an enormous help in keeping her laser race team bubble distanced from other groups. In past years, Maria loved playing games with the Wet Feet and CANSail 1/2 groups along with showing them her laser and encouraging them to keep with the sport. It was a big change for her this year, having to keep her distance from some of the younger classes.  However, this did not dampen her enthusiasm. She adapted and found ways to communicate with the younger sailors, across bubble boundaries, keeping them happy and encouraged. This year marked Maria’s third season in the Laser 4.7. Her improvement in the boat over the past few seasons has also been a great encouragement to everyone at the club.  Unfortunately, without a regatta circuit…
One of the major issues facing sailing today is how can we transition youth sailors into keelboats as traditional pathways for this currently do not exist. This past summer Roby volunteered his time with Robb's Farr 30 and partnered with the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron Race Team to create a youth to keelboat program utilizing two Farr 30's. Participants would go out training 1-2 times a week and also have the opportunity to race on Wednesday nights as well as at the Lunenburg Welcome Back Regatta, & Fall One Design. Boats were made up of mainly all youth sailors and one older person in charge. This gave youth sailors a chance to race while traditional dinghy regattas were canceled but also an opportunity to experience keelboat racing in the region. This is a great step forward and while our race team could not travel due to COVID they were able to experience a new area of sailing with the Youth Farr 30 Race program.  For their efforts leading this great initiative, Roby Douglas and Robb Apold are the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron Volunteers of the Year.
Noah MacMurty is the BBYC Shooting Star Award Winner this year because his motivation has pushed the aspirations of the BBYC Racing Team and made everyone always put their best effort in. He is a very smart sailor and is growing to become a great athlete. His dedication amazes all of us, including his family.  Congratulations Noah!
Sail Nova Scotia is pleased to present a Merit Award to the Lunenburg Yacht Club for all their efforts putting together and running the Welcome Back Regatta in 2020. The Welcome Back Regatta held from Aug 21, -23, 2020 at LYC was an overwhelming success. With Covid-19 shadowing our every move this year in yacht clubs around Nova Scotia, building a regatta from scratch required dozens of focused volunteers. The number of boats/crew that were able to participate had to be limited based on shoreside facility Covid modified capacities. Early registrations meant capacity was quickly reached and the Regatta even had a waiting list. The Regatta was chaired by Jennifer Hall and the principal race officer was Colin Mann. Because of the Covid-19 restrictions,  such as social distancing, the meetings and announcements were held outside. Food and drinks were also available outside for the participants, members and guests. To organize this Regatta, the number of volunteers required totalled 57. It would not have been able to succeed without these many volunteers offering their time and energy to lend a hand for the first major Regatta of 2020. The volunteers included the organizing committee, committee boat, mark boats, ticket sales for food and beverages, etc. The entire event was operated outside on the grounds of LYC and it was certainly quite a sight to behold. Congratulations to Commodore Janet Snair and all the team at Lunenburg Yacht Club.
Tuesday, 10 November 2020 10:22

Ryan Anderson - RNSYS Coach of the Year

Ryan’s dedication to coaching has allowed young athletes from all over Nova Scotia to develop a deep love for the sport. His rich experience in Laser guaranteed the technical knowledge he is able to pass over younger generations, but he has also succeeded in delivering such knowledge with fun, joy and inspiration to the athletes. During the challenging 2020 season, Ryan was very successful in keeping racing youth sailors engaged and pushing their training despite their racing calendar being suspended. These experiences have made RNSYS athletes develop not only sailing skills, but life skills. Ryan has been a great mentor and role model in teaching his athletes how to maintain their boats and fitness in the best condition to optimize performance at competitions. His discipline and passion for the sport has and will continue inspiring and developing Nova Scotia’s young generations. 
This spring held many uncertainties for sailing coaches in our province. With the questions surrounding whether the Hubbards Sailing Club program would run, coaches were unsure where their summer income would be coming from. As the treasurer on HSC’s Board of Directors, Patrick developed a plan on how the club could keep all our coaches on staff and how many hours they could offer each of them if programs did not go ahead as planned. This provided needed reassurance. Patrick was also a huge help in assisting coaches navigate the CESB and CERB benefits available to them. This was above and beyond volunteer action. There are not many workplaces that care enough about their employees to spend many hours researching what benefits are available to them and to help them navigate through tough situations. This action becomes especially impressive when considering that Patrick is strictly a volunteer at the club. When it became clear that our program would be going ahead, Patrick joined the club's COVID committee which helped develop the plan on how the club would operate this summer. He continued to meet and provide support all season, helping to deal with many of the challenges that appeared throughout the summer. This summer, HSC was fortunate to operate a successful program, close in capacity to past years. However, the applications for grants and subsidies, researched, prepared and submitted by Patrick were invaluable in keeping our club operational and is a huge reason why we were able to keep so…
Thursday, 05 November 2020 09:45

Alexa Dalzell - BBYC Coach of the Year

Alexa has been part of BBYC for many years, starting her own sailing career from this club at age seven. Alexa has coached many levels of sailors during her time at BBYC. For the past two years Alexa has held the position of Head Coach. Her commitment and dedication stood out in getting the sailing programs off the ground this year with effective Covid -19 protocols. She was positive and professional throughout. Her ability to think 'outside the box' resulted in the safest practices for our sailors. She was flexible, caring and wanted the best outcome for all. She had an excellent attitude and willingness to adapt. She provided direction to coaches, sailors and parents during a most challenging and uncertain time. For Alexa, the safety of the sailors and her team always came first. Having fun was always key. We are proud to have Alexa as the Head Coach for BBYC.
Wednesday, 04 November 2020 09:10

Abush Butler - RNSYS Shooting Star Award Winner

In 2020, Abush has demonstrated exceptional sportsman skills on and off the water. He is a highly valued and appreciated team player among his peers, and a great ambassador of the sport and Nova Scotia sailing. Abush participated in the RNSYS Learn To Sail C420 Program, where he incorporated a good foundation for double handed sailing. His interest for the sport kept his sailing going into the Fall season, where he participated at the Kennedy Cup finishing in 4th place in the C420 class. His coachability, work ethic and dedication to improve himself was noticed by the coaches so he was invited to participate at the Atlantic YOTS, providing the opportunity to initiate him in the i420 (Youth Worlds class, faster and more technical than C420) and receive some coaching from high performance coaches. YOTS coaches like Olympians Oliver Bone and Jacob Saunders were very impressed by Abush’s ability to welcome technical coaching and his coachability. Abush’s improvements were noticeable at the Fall Dinghy Regatta where he took the overall win in the i420 fleet. Agustin Ferrario the Head Coach at RNSYS is looking forward to what Abush’s future sailing will bring for him.
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