Ships Wheel ®

United States Power Squadrons® 

Phoenix Sail and Power Squadron
District 28
Sail and Power Boating

"Come for the Education ... Stay for the Fun"

 Phoenix Burgee

Bos'n's Pipe Logo

The Bos'n's Pipe, official publication of the Phoenix Sail and Power Squadron, has once again been awarded the Distinction award, as judged by the USPS National Publications Committee. It is the twentieth the publication has been so honored. Selected excerpts from the current and past issues are included below.
Communications with members is accomplished by direct mailing of our Squadron publication, the Bos'n's Pipe, and by telephone in advance of activities. The Bos'n's Pipe is published monthly (except July and August) and contains the Commander's Message, officer reports, articles of boating interest, and announcements of upcoming social and educational events. Members are encouraged to submit articles and photos to the Editor, P/D/C Lee Whitehead, SN

A complete copy of the FULL COLOR Bos'n's Pipe, in Adobe Acrobat format, can be downloaded by clicking on any of the monthly links below. Hint: Right click to download and save in your computer. Things will go faster that way. Use your browser "back" button to return. We keep a full year of issues online. The link to the latest issue is in bold text.


A freeware reader can be downloaded from Get Acrobat Reader

The 13th Annual Turkey Fry
WHO: All members of our Phoenix Sail & Power Squadron and family.What: The Annual Turkey Fry Potluck!  WHEN: 21 November 1100 (11 am). Dinner will be 1400 (2PM) (if the turkeys cooperate). WHERE:: We will meet at the Connie & Bill Johnson’s home located at 8935 W Villa Chula St, Peoria AZ 85383.  COST:  $5.00 per adult, under 18 free.  Bring your family, a Thanksgiving dish to share, a chair and eating utensils, and a thankful heart. There will be ample time for visiting with others and/or playing games.   There is room for horseshoes. 

Plans are to deep fry 3 turkeys again this year.  Other dishes needed are mashed po­tatoes, sweet potatoes, vegetables, rolls, gravy, stuffing, desserts, very large paper plates, plastic silverware, butter, ice, or anything else you would find at a Thanksgiving dinner table.

So that we have ample food and a good variety, please RSVP to Bill or Connie Johnson with your number of people attending as well as what food dish you intend to bring.  In past years we consumed three (3) twenty-pound turkeys, had no leftovers or hungry people! We hope to see you there and look forward to another great day with our boating family.

Special Note: This is a new location in north Peoria.  See the map for directions.  Bill Johnson BILLJ6@GMAIL.COM, Cell:  623-525-6318 or Connie Johnson  Cell: 602-695-2147

Link to Map to 2015 Turkey Fry



2015 P/C's BBQ

(all members & guests Invited)

held at Lake Pleasant Regional Park

Ringtail Ramada

(West side of lake by Visitors Center)


2014 Christmas Party is December 13
By Cdr Dan Sheen
The squadron's annual Christmas party on December13th is at the home of Jerry and Kathy Anderson in Fountain Hills. 
Everything starts at 2:00 p.m. and will merrily proceed at a reasonable pace afterwards.  
Jerry and Kathy are furnishing the wonderful setting and the squadron is furnishing the meat dish, soft drinks and punch.
Members are asked to provide holiday cheer and potluck dishes. Our December General Membership Meeting will be a brief interruption to the fun and games.
There is a purely voluntary gift exchange. Don't participate in the gift exchange unless you bring a gift, and the gift does not have to be nautical. 
For the potluck, there is no formal rule of who should bring what to share, but in the past those with last names beginning with A-L have been asked to bring a side dish, and those whose last name starts with M-Z have been asked to bring a dessert to share. Also, bring your own adult beverages.
     From the 101 in Scottsdale (north or south depending on where in Phoenix you start), take the Shea Blvd. exit heading east to Fountain Hills, after 7.8 miles turn left (north) on E. Palisades Blvd, after 2.9 miles turn right on E. Lost Hills Drive.  Then take the second right on E. Ponderosa to Andersons' house at:
     15833 E. Ponderosa Dr.
      Fountain Hills AZ 85268
If you get lost call: Jerry and Kathy's Home  phone:  480-837-0043  Cell:  480-540-9494.





21 - 22 Mar 2014 Past Commander's BBQ

Location: Maricopa County Cave Creek Regional Park

Group Campsite,

It is time for the 2014 Past Commander’s BBQ.  This is one of the most enjoyable outings of the year and all members are invited.  For those of you who haven’t attended this event before, the Past Commander’s of the squadron, prepare a dinner with all the fixings for all.  We always have a good time. The location has moved again to see a different part of our state.
The BBQ will be located at the Maricopa County Cave Creek Regional Park, 37900 N Cave Creek Parkway(32nd St), Cave Creek, AZ. which is located in the hills west of Cave Creek. 

Note:  If you use a GPS to locate the park by the address, it may take you to the town of Cave Creek. Use 37900 N 32nd Street, Cave Creek, AZ.

You drive there by taking the Carefree Hwy to 32nd Street(west of Cave Creek Road), go north about two miles to the Park.  Inside the Park, take first left on Olivine Rd, then second left on Campground Road.  We have reserved a Group Ramada with camping privileges in the oversized leveled parking lot. 

If you are interested in camping, please contact me.  The per vehicle entrance fee is $6.  Dry camping is $15 per day.  They have a Nature Center and several hiking trails in the park.

We will be asked to contribute just $8 per head for the awesome feast that is promised to be served by your loyal past Commanders. We already have commitments for BBQ chicken, brisket, brownies, cole slaw, ice cream and many other wonderful victuals.

Coffee, ice and water will be supplied, other beverages are left to the choice of the individual attendees.

Please help us make this event a celebration of the past, present and future for our squadron.

Date of BBQ:  Saturday, March 22. Food preparation 2:00 p.m.
Social hour 3:00 p.m.
Dinner 4:00 p.m. meeting to follow.
(Note, the location is reserved for Saturday, but can be extended if enough interest is shown)




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Bos’n’s Pipe takes a Holiday

There will be no June or July issue of the Bos’n’s Pipe as your editor has chosen to succumb to sloth over the hot summer months. Look for the September issue with news of the Pot Luck dinner that starts the new boating year.

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Safe Boating Celebration is big success
May 2013
By P/D/C Bill Johnson, SN
Photos by Werner

The Ninth Annual Safe Boating Celebration was joined with the Maricopa Parks Department Adventure Days this year. The Adventure Days event drew a large crowd that had to drive past our VSC booth to get to all of the other exhibitors.

The Maricopa County Parks department worked with us by allowing us to setup with free admittance in a very visible location. The boaters who came through the boat preparation area were very receptive and polite to our VSC examiners. A majority of the boaters wanted their boats checked.


The safe boating week celebrants—These members greeted many boaters and provided inspections of boats at Lake Pleasant. (from left) Bill Johnson, Ron Werner, Connie Johnson, Rose Werner, Jackie Wanta, Ron McNeil, and Terry and Jean Gray. Missing from this photo is John Lusson, who performed 12 inspections a week later.

Members Connie Johnson and Ron McNeil assisted in recruiting boaters to get their vessels inspected by Jackie Wanta, Jean and Terry Gray, Rose and Ron Werner and me. Every boat that went through the launch prep area was greeted by the squadron volunteers and informed of the Free Vessel Safety Check and the upcoming Phoenix Sail and Power Squadron, America's Boating Course (ABC) that started May 19th.

We also had the pleasure of giving away two children's life jackets to boater's that had children either needing a jacket immediately or when they grow a little more.

New life jacket—Jackie Wanta adjusts this life jacket on a young boater. It was one of two given to children at the 10-lane ramp during the Safe Boating Week Celebration.

Grateful boater—Ron Werner (with back to camera) explains the importance of safe boat operation to a boat owner with children before launch.

During the four-plus hours of the event, over 35 boats were inspected and some boaters learned important boating rules that they had not previously known. I personally was glad to learn that two of the boaters had stated they had taken a United States Power Squadron Basic Boating Course through our squadron-hosted courses. They still valued the information and lessons learned in class that has helped them in their boating to this day.

Personal Watercraft -- Ready for a fun day of making waves.

The PSPS Booth served as a focal point for the inspections that were provided the public on the 10-lane launch ramp.

On Saturday, May 26th, John Lusson went to the Lake Pleasant 10-lane launch ramp and completed 12 more inspections by himself. He was not available for the first Saturday of the Boating Safety week, but closed out the week with a bang. This brought the total Vessel Safety Checks to 51.

Even Fido—The safe boating celebration included every sort of vessel. The PWC’s above and Fido, below, came under the watchful eye of Ron McNeil.

Thanks to all who put forth the efforts to make boating safer in Arizona.

Next year we need to make this event grow and attract more public as well as squadron member participation. The Parks department encourages us to provide more VSC's throughout the year.

* * *

2012 Offshore Cruise Highlights Boating Education
Story and photos by Joe Warren, JN

This year’s Phoenix Sail and Power Squadron Offshore Cruise highlighted the importance of USPS Education in safe boating. Cruise Planning, onboard weather forecasting, GPS use, Radar use, AIS use, anchoring techniques and more were all part of the 2012 Offshore Cruise. The crew included Cdr Rob Anderson, P/C Tim Harrington, Randy LaRoche (picture above) and Joe Warren. Supporting the crew thorough advance preparation work was Sally Harrington.

Departing San Diego early Saturday, May 5th the crew of Bátá Mor headed west-northwest to pass the southern tip of San Clemente Island comfortably offshore after dark. Changing to a more northerly course we continued motor sailing through the night leaving Santa Barbara Island to the east Sunday morning, heading for Albert Anchorage at Santa Cruz Island.

Arriving midafternoon Sunday at Albert Anchorage and anticipating the weather we chose to anchor instead at nearby Coches Prietos. Coches Prietos turned out to be a good choice but because we were experiencing winds and swell we did anchor watch duty through the night. We set anchor alarms on multiple GPS units but the boat stayed put and a little swell was our only inconvenience. Bátá Mor meals are well-planned and excellent thanks to Sally’s skills and efforts. Better than meals on most cruise ships, the challenge is to return ashore with out having added a few extra pounds while at sea. Feasting on chili, tacos, spaghetti, fried chicken and more we enjoyed fine meals
afloat. One minor panic occurred when the dinner menu chose to play hide and seek. To the relief of all aboard it was quickly found hiding behind the gimbaled stove.

Monday we motor sailed to the Northwest Anchorage in Beecher Bay at Santa Rosa Island. Before Santa Rosa Island became part of the Channel Islands National Park, it was a cattle ranch. All ranch supplies came by boat. The ranch house/office and dock are still there, now used by the National Park Service. There is even an airstrip there.

The Northwest Anchorage is near the landing site dock, however private boats are not allowed to dock there. The anchorage is good for protection from north winds, which we were experiencing at the time. Three fishing boats joined us in the anchorage area that evening and we felt we had made the right choice. We stayed put through the night while the winds did not quit.

Tuesday morning brought fog and whales off West Point of Santa Cruz Island. Several whale sightings included mom and baby. Seeing whales is always a special delight. They are spectacular to see.

We continued southerly along the eastern side of the island. There are many spectacular sea caves along this coast. The caves are popular with smaller powerboats and kayakers who can enter them. The island is very scenic when there is no fog. We had planned to anchor Tuesday at Frys Harbor in anticipation of expected wind and swelldirection. The fog however almost prevented it. We made a pass offshore and could not see any features because of fog. We closely monitoring our instruments and proceeded very slowly for a second pass, the fog began to clear as we got closer to shore. As the anchorage came into view we could confirm it is fairly small and chose to set two anchors here.

Our second anchor was a stern anchor with a float attached. The anchorage is an east-west facing anchorage with high cliffs on both sides providing good protection from north/south wind and swells. Later that day a second sailboat joined us and they too put a stern anchor to help minimize swing radius. We had a quiet afternoon and evening there.

Rob and I went ashore in the dingy and walked around the small beach area. Frys Harbor is where the breakwater rocks for Santa Cruz harbor were mined many years ago. Remnants of the mining infrastructure remain and make exploring there interesting. We were intruding on a number of seals at home on the beach there, including one curious baby seal that checked us out closely.

That evening we saw a pair of bald eagles flying around and landing in a tree. There must have been a nest nearby but we did not see it. Repopulation of the bald eagles in the islands continues to be a success and they are seen frequently now.

Wednesday found us continuing southerly along the coast past a number of potential anchorages. We considered stopping at Prisoners Harbor but with a commercial boat already there we chose to proceed to Little Scorpion Anchorage, not far from San Pedro Point at the east end of the Island. We had a beautiful afternoon and evening in Little Scorpion watching seabirds and a spectacular sunset.
Later in the evening, around 3:30 a.m., the wind and waves had changed and we found our selves in only 20 feet of water. We were underway within 15 minutes of deciding to leave the anchorage. Such discipline is clearly the sign of a well-educated and well-trained crew. Everyone knew his jobs and performed them effectively.

We had planned to leave early anyway. We were now heading south to either Avalon or San Diego. With wind and waves against us till south of Anacapa Island, we made less than five knots over ground through this stretch. Eventually things settled and we were able to make better time.

We passed Avalon around dusk and continued on to San Diego. We reached the southern end of the shipping lanes at the same time as two container ships. For about 45 minutes we watched them closely on AIS and radar. Eventually things got sorted out and we safely went our separate ways. From radar we knew we were not closer than 3 miles. The rest of the evening saw less activity on the radar. We arrived in San Diego around 8:30am Friday morning, unpacked Bátá Mor, said goodbye to Tim and Sally and loaded up and headed back to Phoenix, already reliving the memories of the past week.


(Editor’s note: The trip was recorded by GPS and Google Earth. The illustration below shows the route taken by Bata Mor for the annual offshore cruise. The starting and ending point was San Diego. The route around the Channel Islands skirting Santa Catalina, San Clemente and the mainland are clearly visible in this illustration. The voyage’s farthest most point is approximately 200 nautical miles from San Diego.)

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News from the Ship's Store


Is your current PSPS wardrobe complete with a logo sweatshirt or polo shirt in your favorite color?
Take a moment to take stock of what you have in your closet and contact me if you would like to put in an order. Your shirt can be personalized with your name or be delivered with just the PSPS logo.

The Ship's Store also has a small traveling inventory of USPS items that you can shop at any general membership meeting.  

The inventory of the PSPS Ship's Store includes hats, bags (duffel, fanny, tote, barrel and attaché), burgees, and ensigns. We also have zippered portfolios, whistles, an insulated stainless steel travel mug, and an emergency FM radio/scanner/flashlight that operates by hand crank or AA batteries. Before you order from the National Ship Store, please take a look at our list or call me (602-997-6801).  All items in inventory can be delivered at a General Membership Meeting. Please don't forget that Phoenix Sail and Power Squadron polo shirts and sweatshirts can be ordered at any time.

 bag hat 

Interested? The Phoenix Sail and Power Squadron will be offering new up-to-date hats and a handy carrying bag, both embroidered with the new name of the squadron.

The hat will be available in two colors -- light blue or either royal blue or black. The heavy-duty bag measures 13x15 inches and is 5-1/2 inches deep. The hats and bags are to sell for $20 each. 

A new monogramed polo shirt has been designed. It will be available with or without the owner's name.
A selection of fabric colors is also be considered
Ship Store open at Pot Luck Dinner

As a convenience for our members, the Phoenix Sail and Power Squadron Ship's Store maintains a stock of frequently requested USPS items. They can be obtained by contacting the store manager, Lt/C Jackie Wanta, S,

Click here for a complete list of the items available from the Phoenix SPS Ship's Store

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This page last updated 17 October 2015