Wednesday, February 23, 2011

CBI makes changes to junior program membership price

For many decades CBI has charged a $1 membership fee per child to participate in the summer junior program. Commencing in 2011, CBI is changing course.  We will now charge a sliding scale based on household income.  Critical to discussing this change is understanding what continues to be a priority for CBI and has not changed - junior membership will still be $1 per child for families with annual household income of less than $75,000.  At the bottom of this blog is a link to the 2011 Junior Program Application form..

A couple of questions I have been asked are:  Why now?  What prompted this change? And is it connected to the dock replacement? So I want to offer some discussion to these questions.

In 2010 CBI's Board of Directors adopted a 5 year strategic plan.  It articulates our commitment to "Sailing for All" and provides for the needs of our programming today and for future generations.  From this foundation, we took an in-depth look at our junior program pricing and came to the decision that $1 per child for all children was not a sustainable model for CBI in today’s world and in the future. 

In the past two years, CBI's junior program grew to close to 2300 participants. Along with this numerical growth, in 2011 we're expanding our programming into the spring, the fall, the winter, and on weekends.  Furthermore, we are improving the quality of programming by offerings diverse interactive lessons on topics such as the environment.  The total junior program cost in 2011 will be approximately $300,000.

Additionally, the need to replace much of our fleet in the near future is an immediate and growing concern.  I believe this price change has come at the right time for the right reason.  It supports sailing for all, both today and in the future, while keeping our commitment to minimizing economic barriers to the sport of sailing.

The last question - Is this price change connected to the new dock?  The answer is no. It is related, however, because CBI has accepted  responsibility to deliver ambitious programming which lives up to the investment made by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the DCR, and other supporters of The Esplanade and "Sailing for All", something that we take seriously with humility.

I believe that the meaning of the new Community Boating Dock will be found in how well we meet our mission  of "Sailing for All" in the 21st century.  In addition to increasing the quantity and quality of the Junior Program, CBI plans to double the size of our accessible sailing program in 2011 - something which wasn't possible before with the smaller dock - and to host more regattas such as the Massachusetts Special Olympics Championship.  So while there is no direct linkage between the new dock and the change in junior program pricing, both changes will make CBI a stronger organization, and a more effective and impactful organization.


Link to CBI's Junior Program application:

Friday, February 11, 2011

CBI and staff receive multiple national awards!

Reprinted here is our press release announcing the awards CBI and staff received in January at the US Sailing National Sailing Programs Symposium.  Congratulaions to CBI, Tom Moore, and Amy Lyons!


February 07, 2011

Contact:          Marcin Kunicki
                        Community Boating, Inc.
21 David Mugar Way
                        Boston, MA 02114
                        P: (617) 523-1038, x.23

Boston’s Community Boating Wins Four (4) National Awards
Community Boating recognized at US Sailing National Sailing Programs Symposium with awards for outreach and inclusion and excellence in sailing

BOSTON, MA – Community Boating, Inc. (CBI) received four prestigious awards at the US Sailing National Sailing Program Symposium in Clearwater Beach, FL, January 2011. The program received two awards—the prestigious US Sailing Captain Joe Prosser Award for Excellence in Sailing as well as the US Sailing Community Sailing Council Outstanding Inclusion and Outreach award for its efforts in Youth and Universal Access Programs. Additionally, Junior Program Director, Amy Lyons of Somerville, MA received the US Sailing Community Sailing Council Outstanding Director of a Seasonal Program Award. And Operations Director, Tom Moore of Brighton, MA received the US Sailing Community Sailing Council Outstanding Leadership Award.

Community Boating Executive Director Charlie Zechel states "It is a true honor for all of us at Community Boating to receive this level of national recognition and a testament to the dedication and hard work of our staff and many volunteers. As Community Boating prepares to launch it's 65th sailing season on the Charles River, we remain committed to the concept of "Sailing for All" and look forward to expanding our programming in areas of accessibility.  The Commonwealth and partners have made an important commitment to our programs by rebuilding the docks this winter.  CBI is equally committed to expanding accessibility to the sport of sailing for all individuals."

US Sailing, the national governing body of sailing awards the Captain Joe Prosser Award at US SAILING's National Sailing Programs Symposium in cooperation with the United States Merchant Marine Academy's Sail Training Program (Kings Point, NY). This prestigious award recognizes the life achievement of the Merchant Marine Academy's first sailing master, Captain C.A. "Joe" Prosser, USMS. The award celebrates an exemplary contribution toward improving the quality and safety in the training or instruction of sailors. Nominees shall embody all characteristics of sportsmen: namely honor, integrity, and a selfless dedication to the sport. In addition to the trophy, a $500 credit funded by US SAILING’s Training Committee will be awarded annually to the selected school or program for Instructor Training. For more information on US Sailing awards, please see:

Community Boating is the nation’s oldest and largest community sailing program offering learn to sail programming for adults, kids and individuals with special needs on the Charles River. The mission of Community Boating, Inc., is the advancement of sailing for all by minimizing economic and physical obstacles to sailing. In addition, CBI enhances the greater Boston community by using sailing as a vehicle to empower its members to develop independence and self-confidence, improve communication, foster teamwork and acquire a deeper understanding of community spirit and the power of volunteerism.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Be Good To Our Environent -Spare the plastic bottles!

Today's guest blog is from our very own Director of Youth Programs, Amy Lyons.  Thank you Amy.

Water Water Everywhere…

I don’t know about you, but sailing and being surrounded by water always makes me thirsty.  If you share this sentiment, please read on before you dip your hands into the Charles for a sip… I’ve got a better solution. 

CBI wants to put an end to two pervasive problems among our membership – drinking Charles River water, and buying single-use plastic bottles.  For your health, and the health of our environment, we’ll be selling reusable aluminum water bottles for the low price of $6 each, as well as installing a new water fountain with a better filtration system.  Cool, refreshing, filtered water… aaaaaahhhh. 

Did you know:
  • Plastic bottles take 700 years to begin composting
  • 90% of the cost of bottled water is due to the bottle itself
  • 38 million plastic bottles go to the dump per year in America from bottled water
  • 24 million gallons of oil are needed to produce a billion plastic bottles
  • The average American consumes 167 bottles of water a year
  • Bottling and shipping water is the least energy efficient method ever used to supply water
Be the envy of all your friends with a small piece of aluminum that says “I care”. 
Best features of these bottles: there’s a spot to write your name, so no one can steal your awesome bottle (believe me, they’ll want to!), and they have a carabiner – attach it to yourself or your boat to keep that cool water coming! 
Buying one of these bottles is a no-brainer, however choosing the right color can be difficult.  Here are a few notes on what these different colors mean – choose wisely.  These bottles also make great gifts, but you’ll want to make sure that you choose the appropriate color for your friends and loved ones. 
Handy Color Guide:

  • Black is a very powerful color that portrays one of class, elegance and wealth. 
  • Purple portrays rich powerful kings, leaders, wizards and magicians.
  • Green is the color of nature and health. It represents growth, nature, and money.
  • Blue has a calming effect; it is a color of loyalty, strength, wisdom and trust.
  • Red is a very strong color that evokes a powerful emotion of passion; it is a symbol of pride and strength.

You can order your water bottle TODAY by calling or emailing the Front Office (

Stay Hydrated,


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Some take aways from the National Sailing Programs Symposium

During the last week of January, CBI program managers Tom Moore, Marcin Kunicki, Amy Lyons, Andrew Alletag, and board member Adam Schepp and I spent a not unpleasant week in Clearwater Florida attending the US Sailing National Sailing Programs Symposium (NSPS).  NSPS is the annual conference hosted by US Sailing bringing together close to 300 individuals who manage, direct, and support sailing programs from every corner of the world ( mostly community based).  This year the attendee who travelled the farthest came from Hong Kong. CBI made some what of a splash this year by sending a delegation of 6 and receiving several awards for various outstanding achievements (Details to follow in my next blog).  I haven't attended an NSPS in several years.  This one made quite an impression on me.  I am truly bursting with pride to see how CBI's management team is regarded on the national stage.  Tom, Marcin, Amy, Adam and I  were all breakout presenters (Andrew, you get a pass for being the rookie this year!). US Sailing and NSPS are a lot like CBI - many. volunteers giving to others and receiving back in return.

Sometimes you take for granted what is in front of you every day. And I am guilty of this as much as anyone else.  When I see where CBI is today, and compare that to so many other programs, not just in the US but on the international stage, and recognize our  large and engaged volunteer community, I see the fruition of a beautifal idea and the core strength of CBI.  This is important  because with the construction of the new dock, I am very much impressed that the state's investment of close to $3 million, is based in part,on CBI, who we are and what we do, and more importantly what we will do in the future. The impact of CBI is in many ways much bigger than the small sailing area we enjoy today between the bridges.

While the dock gets closer to completion with each day, CBI gets closer to a new beginning.  I suspect that  great beginnings are built on great endings. CBI is 65 years old in 2011 and has had a truly great  run and a long list of accomplishments.  Now it's time for us to build the next 65 year together.    Next blog  - CBI Operations Director Tom Moore, Director of Junior Sailing Amy Lyons, and CBI receive multiple national awards!

[So we weren't gone that long and when we came back there is snow  piled high and thick everywhere.  What happened??!!  What did you all do??!!  Sigh.......My promise - it will take me 7 to 9 weeks but I will get rid of all the snow. You're welcome.]  -Charlie