News Notes - New England

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Horseshoe Shoal wind farm plan may be vetoed

The controversial proposal to construct the nation’s first large offshore wind farm, in Nantucket Sound, was dealt a blow in April when a Senate-House conference committee approved a bill that would give Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney veto power over wind farm projects in the sound.

Alaskan senator Ted Stevens added the measure as an amendment to a Coast Guard budget bill. Jim Gordon, president of Cape Wind Associates — the private company that proposed the wind farm project — charges in a statement that the measure was inserted without hearings or public discussion, and is an “egregious abuse” of the legislative process.

“By arbitrarily legislating a new barrier on a single project, solely because of local opposition, this provision will impede the development of offshore renewable energy throughout the country,” Gordon says in the statement.

Romney, a Republican, has publicly opposed the wind farm project. A number of other state politicians also have spoken against the wind farm project, including the majority of candidates running to replace Romney in the election for governor this fall, the New York Times reported. Members of the full Congress are expected to consider the budget bill once they return from recess.

As it stands, the $800 million Cape Wind project calls for 130 turbine towers, each 417 feet tall, to be installed near Horseshoe Shoal in Nantucket Sound over about 24 square miles. Cape Wind developers estimate the turbines would produce enough electricity to power roughly three-quarters of the Cape and Islands (www.capewind.org ).

Proponents of the project say the wind farm would provide a substantial alternative to using fossil fuels, lessen effects of global warming and improve air quality. Opponents are leery of giving public land on Nantucket Sound to a private developer. They argue that the location of the turbines would detract from the natural beauty of the area, and that the project poses certain environmental and navigational hazards.

— Jason Fell

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Newport Spring Boat Show returns

Hundreds of brokerage boats and new-boat specials will be displayed and for sale at the 32nd annual in-water Newport Spring Boat Show. Scheduled for May 18 to 21 at Newport Yachting Center, the show is in its fifth year of association with the Yacht Brokers Association of America.

Last year nearly 200 boats with a total of 300 exhibits were exhibited in the water, on land and under tents.

While the Newport Spring Boat Show attracts hundreds of 35- to 65-foot power and sailboats to its in-water display area, a similar number of 16- to 35-foot boats are shown on land. Many are used boats and yachts offered by brokers, some are new “season specials” that dealers are looking to move as the season begins.

“The spring show offers a unique opportunity for brokers and dealers since it’s an in-water show at the very start of the boating season,” says Nancy Piffard, show director. “The buying process that started in the indoor winter shows culminates for many buyers at this time.”

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society will again be the show’s charitable partner, and will be holding a fund-raising cocktail party at the show on May 18 with the featured speaker Gary Jobson.

Tickets are $10 for the day and $15 for the May 17 Preview Day ($5 of the ticket price will be donated to Leukemia & Lymphoma). For information, call Newport Exhibition Group at (401) 846-1115. www.newportspringboatshow.com

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Stephens presentation highlights symposium

Olin Stephens, 98, discussed his experience with tank testing on America’s Cup boats he designed such as Ranger, Courageous and Intrepid at the second Classic Yacht Symposium, March 31 to April 2 in Bristol, R.I. The presentation was considered the highlight of a unique forum for all things classic yachts.

The talk was followed by six presentations of various restoration projects. One was the restoration of the New York 30, Alera, completed just in time for the 100-year class anniversary in 2005.

Another paper looked at the restoration of Cangarda, a 126-foot yacht originally built in 1901. On this yacht the steel hull had corroded to the point where virtually all of it had to be scrapped except for the transom. A new hull was fitted with the original steam engines, and the original beautiful Victorian interior was reinstalled. The restored Cangarda will be launched by mid-2006.

A panel of five of the leading boatbuilding/restoration schools in the country discussed among themselves and with the audience the current state and practice of educating for the classic marine trades.

Following a dinner in the Herreshoff Museum’s Hall of Boats, sailing commentator Gary Jobson presented video clips of various yacht races and a talk about famous yachts that he has known.

On the final day, attendees boarded the recently restored 1887 cat yawl, Clara.

The symposium incorporated 15 papers and reports on yacht restorations. Copies of the proceedings are available through the museum. The next Classic Yacht Symposium is scheduled for April 2008, alternating years with the Chesapeake Sailing Yacht Symposium. www.herreshoff.org

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N.H. shoots down boat speed limits

In a 15-9 vote in March the New Hampshire state senate rejected a bill that aimed to set a 45-mph speed limit on state lakes and rivers.

The bill, which was approved by the House in February, would have applied the 45-mph speed limit on lakes and rivers during the day and a 25-mph speed limit at night. Opponents of the bill argued that the speed limits would be unenforceable and that congestion is the real problem on state waterways, according to an Associated Press news report.

Sen. Carl Johnson (R-Meredith), a proponent of the bill, said the problem, on Lake Winnipesaukee in particular, is that boaters think the lake is their personal playground, the report says. A number of senators who voted against the bill said the legislation should be changed so it applies only to Lake Winnipesaukee.

— Jason Fell

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Mass. builder introduces outboard power cat

Russell Hunt, president of Plymouth, Mass.-based MD (formerly Multihull Development) launched the first Buzzards Bay 33OB in April. Powered by twin 225-hp Mercury Verados, MD’s latest offering boasts a cruising range of almost 400 nautical miles, with a top speed of 35-plus knots.

Designed by renowned multihull designer Chris White, the first four hulls have been sold, Hunt says. MD also offers a diesel engine model.

The Buzzards Bay 33 has a fully enclosed pilothouse and “exceptional sea-keeping ability,” Hunt says, achieved in part by its design of combined narrow displacement hulls with lots of tunnel clearance (20-plus inches minimum, from the design water line).

The boat was conceived for economical fuel burn. Based on stats from the prototype, the BB33OB will offer a cruising range of almost 400 nautical miles at 20 knots, while burning only 10 gallons per hour, Hunt says.

The Buzzards Bay 33OB has a spacious deckhouse containing the helm station on the centerline with full instrumentation, a galley along the port side opposite an L-lounge able to seat five adults. The lounge converts to a second berth; the stateroom has a full-size queen. The new boat sells for $280,000.

The company has an open sea trial mission. Following the launching and sea trials, the boat will be setting out on an extensive demo tour. Check the Web site for more information, www.mdcats.com , call (800) 882-7083 or e-mail: info@mdcats.com .

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Maine boatbuilder launches lobster boat

A Stanley 38 built for an Islesford, Maine, lobster fisherman was launched at the John Williams Boat Company in Hall Quarry, Maine, in March.

The semi-custom builder started building primarily commercial boats more than 20 years ago — and still receives the occasional order for a workboat.

The hull of the vessel, named Hope, is made of unidirectional fiberglass and was laid up with vinylester resin. She is powered by a single 267-hp John Deere diesel and has a fuel capacity of 300 gallons.

For information contact John Williams Boat Company, (207) 244-7854.

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Coast Guard Auxiliarist earns lifesaving medal

The Coast Guard’s second-highest award for bravery for saving a life, the Silver Lifesaving Medal, was awarded in March to Auxiliarist William J. Villanova, 35, of Port Chester, N.Y.

Villanova was cited for “heroic action” on the evening of Sept. 1, 2002, when he rescued a person who was caught in the heavy surf off the Pleasant View Inn in Westerly, R.I. Villanova and his family were guests at the inn, on a family vacation.

Elizabeth Young, the director of Auxiliary for the 1st Coast Guard District, Southern Region, said Villanova’s “selfless action in risking his own life to save another, reflects the highest ideals of the United States Coast Guard.”

Villanova entered the heavy surf to assist a drowning victim and both were reportedly thrown around by the waves and pulled under by a rip current on several occasions. Out of the surf, Villanova determined the victim had no vital signs and immediately began CPR. Eventually, the victim began coughing up water and resumed breathing.

The Silver Lifesaving Medal was established on June 20, 1874. It is now awarded by the Department of Homeland Security to civilians and members of the military who risk their lives to rescue or endeavor to rescue any other person from drowning, shipwreck, or other “perils of the sea,” within the United States, or upon any American vessel.

Auxiliarist Villanova is a member of Flotilla 07-03 (Mamaroneck, N.Y.), a six-year member of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary. Villanova is currently vice commander of his flotilla.

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Nautical antiques to be auctioned in Boston

In business since 1967, the Lannan Ship Model Gallery has moved to the 99 High Street Tower. Due to the relocation, a two-day auction, May 6 and 7, will be held at the old, 540 Atlantic Avenue location on Russia Wharf.

Included in the two-day sale will be items from owner Larry Lannan’s personal collection, and another spectacular private collection.

Featured will be more than 100 rare and exquisite ship models, ship’s lanterns, bridge telegraphs, yacht binnacles, paintings and prints, charts, telescopes, sextants, clocks, trophies and other rare maritime antiques.

The auction begins at 10:30 a.m. each day with a two-hour preview beginning at 8:30 a.m. There will also be a chance to preview the items from noon to 8 p.m., May 4 and 5. For information, call (617) 451-2650. www.lannangallery.com ; www.kaminskiauctions.com

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Bavaria introduces the 50 Cruiser

The new Bavaria 50 Cruiser, with a 50-foot, 6-inch LOA and 14-foot, 9-inch beam, is the largest of the completely restyled Cruiser series yachts from the European sailboat manufacturer with a U.S. headquarters in Annapolis.

“Whether you are savoring the amenities of the four- or five-cabin layout, enjoying the exhilaration of being on deck during a relaxing afternoon sail or just standing on the dock watching her sail by, everything about the 50 speaks to pedigree,” says Bruce Mundle, president of Bavaria USA.

Like the other yachts in the newly redesigned Bavaria Cruisers series, the 50 features a bright and spacious interior with mahogany woodwork, two skylights, 10 opening hatches with roller blinds, eight opening ports with curtains and six fixed-hull ports. The large saloon, galley and dinette area offer a roomy feeling with ample space to walk around.

With a 200-gallon fresh water tank, 85-gallon diesel tank and ample storage space below decks, the 50 is designed for extended cruising. The boat is built to handle demanding sailing conditions, with an integrated grid construction, adhered and laminated to the hull throughout, Kevlar-reinforced bow sections, solid hand-laid fiberglass below the waterline, Airex coring in the topsides, flange system hull deck joint for added strength, and substantial stainless-steel chain plates and rigging attachment.

U.S. dealers include: Sail Annapolis in Annapolis, Md.; Sound Yachts in Westbrook, Conn.; Samalot Marine in W. Haverstraw, N.Y.; Wells Yachts in Marblehead, Mass.; Stuart Yacht Sales in Stuart, Fla.; KO Sailing in Seabrook, Texas; Active Yacht Brokerage in Harrison Township, Mich.; and Hooper’s Yachts in Afton, Minn. www.bavariayachts.com

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Alden Yachts signs contract for yacht

In February, Alden Yachts Corporation of Portsmouth, R.I., announced the signing of a new contract to build a 49-foot Flybridge Express. The 49 will be hull number 15 in the series.

“Every one of the 49’s that we have sold has been bought by an owner who has owned several yachts prior to this one,” said Jim Ewing, vice president of Alden Yachts. “We are seeing owners move up in size from smaller yachts, move down in size from larger yachts, and crossover from owning a sailboat to owning the 49.”

The yacht will be powered by twin Caterpillar C12-710HP diesel engines with Cat’s new ACERT Technology.

Completion of the 49 Flybridge Express is scheduled for spring 2007. www.aldenyachts.com