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News notes

Marine weather workshops

are scheduled for autumn

A two-day Marine Weather Forecasting Workshop will take place in Vero Beach, Fla., Nov. 15 and 16. Sponsored by Seven Seas Cruising Association, the workshop curriculum includes cause and effect of marine weather, charting symbols and terminology, the patterns of weather systems, and interpreting surface and 500-mb charts.

The workshop is designed to enable self-reliant mariners to determine the safest routes for their voyages. Lee Chesneau, a senior marine meteorologist for NOAA’s Ocean Prediction Center and a USCG-certified STCW instructor, will conduct the courses.

The cost of the workshop is $250 per person for SSCA members, $275 for non-members. The fee includes a 250-page interactive workbook as well as breakfast and lunch both days. Class size is limited to 20 participants. For more information or to register, call SSCA Home Base at (954) 771-5660 or e-mail . Registration forms are also online at .

New Miami-NYC record

is 3 days, 5 hours

The World Sailing Speed Record Council has recently ratified a new world record for sailing solo from Miami to New York City.

On July 20 Frenchman Thomas Coville sailed his 60-foot trimaran, Sodebo, across the finish at Ambrose Light, completing his voyage in 3 days, 5 hours, 12 seconds. It reportedly was the first single-handed attempt of this passage.

The 1,000-plus-mile journey was difficult due to poor weather and heavy shipping traffic, according to Coville. “The radar did not stop howling,” he says in a statement. “The endless traffic and the dangers didn’t allow any respite. Conditions have been hazardous with some monstrous storms. I didn’t expect that.” Despite the conditions, he achieved an average speed of 12.3 knots in establishing the mark.

— Jason Fell

Shipwreck adventure

opens in New Orleans

Odyssey Marine Exploration, a leader in the field of deep-ocean shipwreck exploration, opened its Shipwreck and Treasure Adventure in August.

Located in Jax Brewery in the French Quarter, the interactive attraction reveals the stories behind some of the world’s most famous shipwrecks, their treasure and historical artifacts, and allows visitors to experience the adventure and excitement of deep-ocean shipwreck exploration through multiple hands-on exhibits.

The attraction features the SS Republic, a Civil War-era ship that sank in a hurricane off the coast of Georgia while sailing from New York to New Orleans in 1865. Odyssey discovered the Republic nearly 1,700 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean in the summer of 2003. More than 51,000 gold and silver coins, and about 13,000 additional artifacts, were recovered in the world’s most extensive deep-ocean archaeological excavation.

Cost is $13.95 for adults and $8.95 for children ages 4-12. Annual passes will be available for $28 for adults and $18 for children.

NOAA scientists issue “dead zone” forecast

A team of scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is forecasting that the “Dead Zone” off the coast of Louisiana and Texas this summer should be significantly smaller than the average size since 1990.

This summer’s “Dead Zone” is predicted to be less than 1,400 square miles, an area the size of Rhode Island. The average annual hypoxia-affected area since 1990 has been about 4,900 square miles. The forecast is based on nutrient loads from the Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers in May and June. The nutrient loads were lower than average this year, probably due to below-average precipitation across much of the Mississippi River Basin.

Coast Guard searches

for napping 4-year-old

Coast Guard officials and a number of volunteers in July spent nearly two hours searching Lake Erie, near Sandusky, Ohio, for a 4-year-old boy who turned out to be napping under blankets aboard his family’s 35-foot Egg Harbor cabin cruiser.

Friends and relatives of Eric Lile screamed with relief, a news report says, when the boy emerged from the boat’s cabin unharmed. Searchers feared he had fallen overboard without a PFD.

Two Coast Guard helicopters, an Ohio Department of Natural Resources dive team, local authorities, and between 50 and 60 private boats searched an area between Catawba and Kelleys islands for the boy. The boy’s uncle, according to the report, said family members had searched the boat but were unable to find the boy.

“This situation could have potentially been much worse than it was, especially since he wasn’t wearing a life jacket,” says Coast Guard Petty Officer Matthew Schofield. “We were very glad it turned out the way it did.”

— Jason Fell

New Florida dealer for Scout Boats

Scout Boats is adding a new dealer to its current roster: Space Coast Marine in Satellite Beach, Fla., bringing the total number of dealers in the boatbuilder’s growing network to 76.

Space Coast Marine is one of the largest full-service boat dealerships in Brevard County, servicing recreational boaters, and boasts a large selection of new and used boats, engines and accessories.

A day on the water for children with cancer

Broker John Weller of Allied Richard Bertram Group has partnered with the Tradewinds Foundation to take children with cancer and their families on yacht outings for enjoyment and relaxation. Weller, a cancer survivor himself, is recruiting yacht owners, captains and other brokers to supply the yachts used for these individual outings.

Tradewinds is working with several experts to identify and recruit children, teens and their families to participate.

During one outing this spring, 12 teens boarded a 50-foot yacht in Dania for a for an evening dinner cruise along the Intracoastal Waterway, The teenagers are in a group called Teen Time, a program for teens touched by cancer at Gilda’s Club South Florida. The latter group is a free, non-profit, non-residential community for men, women and children living with cancer, including families and friends, located in Fort Lauderdale.

“Having the opportunity to go on a 50-foot yacht is unique. There aren’t many organizations that have the Tradewinds contact,” says Debra Frenkel, director of marketing and program development for the foundation.

To contact Tradewinds Foundation, call Frenkel at (800) 734-8930.