Thursday, March 09, 2006

Where the J/Boats are born

This is gonna be a long post with lots of cool pictures.

Last weekend was the annual J/Boats Mid-Winter Rendezvous, up at the Pearson Composites factory in Warren, RI. We left early to make a full day of it.

This is the factory main floor, where the boats are assembled.

Joyce looks over the line at the boats under construction.

The half-completed boat before the deck is mated to it.

This is our next boat. Now all we need to do is steal several hundred grand to pay for it!

It's plenty roomy below...and it has a wine rack; Joyce checked.

There's some good sized boats here...this is a 46-footer I think.

In addition to drooling over the new boats, we took advantage of the many seminars on racing, cruising, and maintenance they offered.

Among the many freebies J/Boats provides is breakfast and lunch. Good stuff!

In addition to sailboats, Pearson Composites also manufactures nearly anything that can be made from fiberglass. This airfoil looks like the wing of a giant windmill.

Later that afternoon, Dick & Leslie York spoke about their around-the-world cruise in their J/46. The first half of their talk detailed some of the out of the way places they visited in the South Seas, with many colorful slides illustrating their fascinating adventures.

Then the lecture took a serious turn. Dick and Leslie happened to be in Thailand when the Boxing Day tsunami hit. Their first-hand account of the disaster, along with detailed pictures taken from a neighboring boat in the anchorage was riveting.

They were anchored in deep water, so the wave didn't destroy their boat, but many vessels closer to shore were caught in the breaking waves. And the pictures of the beach and shoreline being innundated were terrifying.

Dick and Leslie, along with friends and relatives, immediately joined in the emergency rescue efforts. They helped save people in the water, and upon going to shore they assisted in giving first aid and relief. Their efforts definitely helped save lives and propety.

On the drive to Newport where we spent the night, we passed the America3 boat from the America's Cup, in Bristol RI. Now THAT'S a sailboat!


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