SMSA Policy Manual - Appendix G, Cruise Program


Appendix G of the  SMSA Policy Manual specifies the roles & responsibilities of Cruise Chair and cruise leaders. The appendix also specifies the AWARDS within the SMSA Cruise Program and the criteria for presentation. An events TIMELINE is incorporated within this appendix. Cruisers interested in achieving awards, or leading cruises should familiarize themselves with the appropriate sections.

 (The appendix is reproduced verbatim from the original: an Awards Summary table has been added for clarity.)

Rod Schroeder, 2012 Cruise Chair

Southern Maryland Sailing Association

 Appendix G

Cruise program 

Roles and Responsibilities

While the Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws don’t specifically identify the roles and responsibilities of this Committee, as implied roles and responsibilities are identified they should be documented in this section.

1.     INTRODUCTION:  There are certain duties that repeat annually, such as the Scheduling Meeting in the Fall and the Awards Banquet.  Some functions fall to the new Cruise Committee Chair while others linger for the past Committee Chair.  Planning the upcoming season and recruiting Cruise Leaders are probably the most demanding requirements.  The Cruise Committee Chair will total the cruise points as furnished by the Cruise Leaders and publish them from time to time in the CLEW. The points can also be emailed to the cruisers.

2.     ANNUAL BUSINESS MEETING: Present a brief summarization of the year’s events.  Statistics on things like the number of cruisers and points so far and the remaining schedule may be of interest.  The meeting usually coincides with a rendezvous in order to improve attendance.

3.     PLANNING MEETING: Usually held along with the Annual Meeting. This is the first official function of the new Committee Chair.  Prior to this meeting the Cruise Committee Chair should contact the active cruisers, those who participate in most of the cruise events to ascertain the general time frames and duration of cruises.  It is not necessary to have cruise specifics such as cruise leaders or itineraries; just the time frames and in the case of extended cruises a rough idea of where the cruise will go. The cruise Committee Chair should draw up a tentative cruise schedule based on the comments received from the active cruisers.  At the planning meeting the schedule is altered so that cruises will coincide as much as possible with other club events.  Hopefully the cruises can end with a club rendezvous.

 4.     CRUISE PLANNING MEETING AND RENDEZVOUS: This event is held in mid winter usually January or early February.  It must be held early enough so that the Cruise Leaders can be identified and plan the cruises and that the cruise schedule can be included in the Yearbook.  Cruise Leaders are selected at the planning meeting. If a Cruise Leader can not be selected for a particular cruise, the Cruise Committee Chair may leave the Leader TBD (for the Year Book) and try to get a Cruise Leader in time to lead that cruise. Usually breakfast and a light lunch are provided by the Cruise Committee Chair and his committee. The cost comes out of the cruise budget and must be incorporated when providing the cruise program budget. It is a major cruise program expense.

 5.     CRUISE LEADERS: The cruise leaders plan the destinations and itineraries of the cruises which they will lead and are also responsible for ensuring that an announcement of the upcoming cruise appears at least one month prior to the cruise in the CLEW.   Other material for the article might include rendezvous times, specific latitude/longitude, position times and channel for check in.  Depending upon when in the month the cruise is scheduled, more lead time for the announcement may by prudent.  They are also responsible for writing an article describing the cruise and publishing it in the CLEW after the cruise.  The cruise leaders will send a list of cruise participants and cruise points to the Cruise Committee Chair.  The Cruise Committee Chair insures that the cruise leaders fulfill their duties. He also must communicate often with the Cruise Leaders. Cruise Leaders may need feedback early for obtaining slip reservations.  If the Cruise Leader cannot make the cruise he is expected to contact other interested cruisers to see if one of them can take over for him.

 6.     YEARBOOK:  The Yearbook Editor will need the finalized schedule in time to go to press around mid-February.  The schedule for Cruising needs to be carefully proofread in the Yearbook draft form because it will be referred to frequently by members planning their season.  Likewise the cruise portion of the combined Operational Schedule needs a careful review prior to publishing each month. 

 7.     AWARDS BANQUET: The incumbent Committee Chair handles the acquisition of awards and the engraving of plaques on perpetual trophies for the cruise program.  Some advanced planning is required in order to have everything on hand for the Banquet.  In November the points and awards must be finalized.  The awards are the major expense of the cruise program and their budget is usually based on the previous year’s experience.  If money is available in the cruising program budget special awards for whatever reason may be presented. The outgoing Cruise Committee Chair must work closely with the incoming Cruise Committee Chair to ensure that there is enough money budgeted for the new Committee Chair’s program.  The awards are listed in the Banquet program.  This requires advance liaison with the Vice Commodore to allow time for preparation and printing.  The list is in past presentation order.                    

8.     One Thousand Mile Cruising: A plaque is awarded to SMSA skippers who have cruised 1000 or more nautical miles, either with club cruises or independently, during the past season.  There is no formal definition of “season” and this can be interpreted by the Cruise Committee Chair as he sees fit.  The plaque is a 2” X 4” brass plate engraved with the club burgee and SMSA 1,000 Mile Cruising Award and the year with boat name and awardees.  Also awarded are a 14” X 24” SMSA burgee.  The Cruise Committee Chair needs to put an article in the CLEW in sufficient time to get a response from those cruisers who feel that they are entitled to the award.  The Cruise Committee Chair decides how best to verify the claims of cruisers such as the presentation of logs or verification by other members.  Racers are eligible for this award provided they sailed their boat to distant races and stayed on the boat-no hotel at the end of the day.  A point to point race also counts provided the member sleeps on the boat.  A bareboat charter counts but a captained charter does not.           

9.     Joseph T. McGrath Trophy: While cruising during the past season (as above this is undefined and left to the discretion of the cruise Committee Chair), a six sided wood and slate ice bucket with engraved plaques is awarded to the boat that has displayed the SMSA burgee in the most remote areas.  A suitable keeper trophy will also be awarded.

10.   Cruising High Point Awards: Boats accumulating at least 35 points for participation in scheduled SMSA cruises qualify for this awarded. It consists of a large 14” X 21” burgee and special flag.  The first three places receive special suitable keeper trophies.

11.   Cruiser of the Year:  The large silver Happy Hour Cruising Trophy is appropriately engraved and presented to the high point winner as well as a suitable keeper trophy.


Awards Summary

Award Criteria Presentations
Cruiser of the year Highest cruise points 1) Happy Hour Trophy, 2) SMSA large burgee, 3) keeper trophy *
High Points Awards 35 or more cruise points 1) SMSA large burgee for all 35-point boats, 2) keeper trophies for the top three** boats
McGrath Trophy Most remote cruise 1) McGrath Trophy, 2) keeper trophy
1000-nm Cruising 1000-nm cruising 1) Engraved plaque, 2) SMSA large burgee
* All keeper trophies are purchased by the Cruise Chair with program funds, prior to the awards banquet.

** Cruiser of the year counts as one of the three high points qualifiers


 Monthly – Coordinate cruising articles from cruise leaders and prepare cruising articles for the CLEW.

 October, Accept nominations for Cruise Committee Chair, begin dialogue with next Cruise Committee Chair, review Policy Manual and appendices. include preliminary cruise point matrix in CLEW. Prepare pass down list for incoming Committee Chair. Include history file of pertinent correspondence, CLEW articles, cruise point matrix, recommended theme for next season, general outline for Cruise Planning meeting to be held in January/February (include food and drink list)

 November after election – Coordinate pass down from previous Cruise Committee Chair. This includes last years cruise schedule, budget from last year, list of cruising awards from the past season and the cruise articles for the year.  Complete cruise point matrix for all cruisers and cruises.

 December, refine budget for next year. Begin preparation for the winter Cruise Planning meeting, announce date for Cruising Planning Meeting, and provide cruise planning inputs to the general schedule for the Vice Commodore. Develop general cruise plan strategy. Finalize awards, order appropriate keepers or coordinate with previous Vice Commodore, provide list of awards to the Vice Commodore and Publicity Committee Chair as necessary for inclusion in the Awards Banquet Program.

 January: Participate in Awards Banquet, hand out awards, coordinate with Vice Commodore. Provide monthly time phased budget to Treasurer. Complete preparations for the cruise Planning Meeting, identify a supporting committee of volunteers as required. 

 February: Early in the month hold the Cruise Planning meeting, identify dates, cruise leaders and destinations, complete the years cruising schedule and coordinate with the racing schedule as much as possible. Prepare final copy of Cruising Program for inclusion in the yearbook. Maintain and up date Cruising section of the yearbook. Prepare invoice for Cruise Planning meeting expenses.

 March: Assure that the cruise leaders for April provide their articles to the CLEW editor.

 April: Participate in the opening day celebrations, support the brunch provided by the BOD with service and food.

 September: Set up the cruising point matrix and publish in the CLEW. Call for all cruisers to check for corrections. Prepare October article for the Cruising section of the CLEW Attend the BOD meeting. Attend the Annual meeting and provide a cruising report with data available as Cruise Committee Chair.

 updated on 02/19/2009

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