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SIBC Swap Meet: October 30 More information.
2015-2016 Season Archives

SIBC Swap Meet Oct 30

The 31st annual Skeeter Iceboat Club Swap Meet will be held on Sunday, October 30, 2017. Click here to download flyer.
What: SIBC Swap Meet
When: Sunday, October 30, 2016; 9 to noon, followed by raffle
Where: Lucke's Cantina, 220 N. Elkhorn Rd. (WI Hwy 67), Williams Bay, WI
Click here for map
Details: This is the day to swap, buy, and sell new and used iceboats and equipment. There is no charge for participating. Boat builders & hardware manufacturers will display new products. Breakfast and/or lunch will be available at Lucke's.
Display area:
Items for sale can be set up on the black top parking area at Lucke's. Please do not park your cars in the display area.
Please do not park or set up your displays adjacent to neighboring businesses. A short distance to the north there is a municipal parking lot located at the intersection of Elkhorn Rd. and Stark St. (on the north side of Stark St., opposite Burrough's Floor Coverings).
For more info, email
Let us know what you have to sell or are looking to buy. We’ll circulate a list.

THUNDERJET in Thunderbay

Mike Madge up in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada and a friend are restoring a Skeeter that migrated north from Pewaukee and has some serious history behind it. THUNDERJET was the Mead Skeeter that took legendary iceboater, Bill Perrigo, first over the finish line at many regattas. Greg Whitehorse wrote a stirring story about THUNDERJET and Bill Perrigo in one of the club's Blade Runner newsletters. Read it here.

FIRST! Первый

As seen on the Facebook page of Valentin Titarenko, what looks to be the first runners on the ice of the season! These DNs are set up near the Bratsk Hydroelectric Dam in Russia.

Jim Gluek, Ken Whitehorse, and Bill Mattison in front of Ken's A Class Skeeter. Note Dick Lichtfeld's collector car Delorean in the background.

A Perfect Day: 4LIYC Picnic & Iceboat Show

The fall weather could not have been more perfect for Saturday's iceboat show and 4LIYC picnic. With 11 12! iceboats on display from multiple classes, it well may have been the biggest off-the-ice gathering of iceboats in history. There were so many highlights of the day. First of all, the thanks yous. Thanks to Peter Fauerbach and Dick Lichtfeld for organizing this amazing event in just a few short weeks. Incredible! Thanks to the volunteers who took the time from their busy schedules to bring and set up boats. To Commodore Ken Norton, Vice Commodore Greg Whitehorse, and Renegader George Gerhardt for manning the grill. We went through 70 brats in an hour and a half and had to send out for more! Thanks to Peter Lundt for bringing the ham, a tradition that the late Jim Payton started over 30 years ago. Thanks to Dick Lichtfeld for cooking up a batch of award winning chili. Thanks to MaryAnn Lichtfeld for ordering the beautiful cake decorated with MISS MADISON. Thanks to Corey Anderson for bringing his tricked out Airstream camper with the big screen so that we could watch the UW Badgers win over Iowa. Other Wisconsin iceboat clubs were well represented. Oshkosh iceboaters were represented by Mike Kroll, Bobby Eckstein, and Marv Luck. (Thanks, Marv, for the copies of the scrapbook.) Other ice yacht club members there were Skeeter Ice Boat Club's Susie Pegel (who reminds us that the SIBC Swap Meet is next Sunday), Green Lake's Joe Norton and Maureen Bohleber, Oshkosh IYC Mike and Janet Peters (thanks for the yellow duckie), Carol Miller and Jim Gluek from Pewaukee IYC, and John Davis from Iowa. The beautiful weather brought out many past champions including Bill and Mauretta Mattison. Facebook is filled with great photos from the day. It's a privilege to be a member of this community of iceboaters.
UPDATE: A camera was found at the picnic. Please email to me and I'll help get it back to you.
ACE OF SPADES Stern Steerer, Mike Peters
BLACK PANTHER Vintage Skeeter, Don Anderson
COLD DRAFT Renegade, Peter Fauerbach
COLD PLAY Renegade, Ken Norton
CRAWFISH Vintage Skeeter, Dick Lichtfeld
DN Class, Peter Fauerbach
MARY B Stern Steerer, Iceboat Foundation
MENACE Stern Steerer, Richard Ela
MISS MADISON Stern Steerer, Richard Lichtfeld
NITE Class, Ken Johnson
ICE OPTIMIST Class, Thor Rosten
WARRIOR Skeeter Class, Ken Whitehorse

4LIYC Picnic & Iceboat Show

Please join us for the Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club annual fall picnic on Saturday, October 22, 2016 at Lichtfeld Plumbing, 5001 Femrite Drive, Madison, WI from 11 AM until 3 PM. This event is conjunction with the Iceboat Foundation and Richard Lichtfeld. There will be several stern steerers set up including the MARY B, MENACE, and MISS MADISON.

Hard Water - A Waterlust Film about Ice Sailing

From the good folks at Waterlust, video from their visit to Baikal Ice Sailing Week last April.

Twin Spin Thursday: Rise of the Skeeters

Regatta paperwork for the upcoming season provides this week's inspiration for Twin Spin Thursday, a visual comparison of Skeeter development into the 21st century. Notice of Race dccuments for the International Skeeter Association (ISA) and Northwest Regatta have been posted along with updated Sailing Instructions, Northwest By Laws, and ISA Rules.

More photos from the magazine spread that featured EVA III.

Combustion vs Wind

This stern steerer iceboat vs motorcycle photo above from 1912 has been posted on many web sites. Iceboats were the fastest vehicles on the planet until the advent of motor vehicles (and perhaps some trains).

Iceboat vs motorcycle brings to mind the classic 1935 newsreel shot on Lake St. Clair of a Chevy racing another stern steerer. Watch it here.
UPDATE: The stern steerer racing the 1935 Chevy on Lake St. Clair is intriguing because it is similar to a Monotype, designed in 1932 by Erik von Holst of Estonia. I ran across a similar boat in YACHTING MAGAZINE identified as a "German 20 Square Meter while researching something else. I don't know the publication date but it's from an article written by Frederik Gardiner, author of Wings on Ice.

Back Home Again In Indiana

Rick Lemberg and Bob Fanning just picked up their latest acquisition, a classic rear seat A Skeeter, here in Madison today. The Skeeter, built by 4LIYC member Bob Kau and then owned by Gary Whitehorse is on its way to to a good and fast home on Lake Wawasee in Indiana. As they loaded the trailer, the temperature kept dropping - a good sign for the upcoming season.

JD is on his way...Photo: Carrie Pok

Get Yourself to Your Local Iceboat Swap Meet

If you are a veteran iceboater or someone looking to get into the sport, make plans to attend your local iceboat swap meet. From Minnesota to Maine, there's a swap meet in your area.

  • Minnesota: Sailcrafters
    Saturday, November 5, 2016
    7450 Oxford Street, St. Louis Park, MN 55426
    Phone: 952-693-6089
  • Wisconsin: Skeeter Ice Boat Club
    Sunday, October 30, 2016
    9 to noon
    220 N. Elkhorn Rd. (WI Hwy 67), Williams Bay, WI
  • Michigan: Gull Lake Ice Yacht Club
    Saturday, November 5, 2016
    10 AM - 3 PM
    Gull Lake Country Club, 9725 W Gull Lake Dr, Richland, MI 49083
    More information
  • New York: Lake Ronkonkoma Ice Yacht Club Swap Meet
    Saturday, December 10, 2016
    1 - 4 PM
    Weeks Yacht Yard, 10 Riverview Ct, Patchogue, NY 11772
    More information
  • Massachusetts:New England Ice Yacht Association
    Saturday, November 5, 2016
    9 AM - Noon
    Knights of Columbus Hall, 17 Willow St, Westborough, MA 01581
    More information
  • Maine:Chickawakee Ice Boat Club
    Sunday, November 6, 2016
    12 Chretien Rd, Biddeford, ME
    More information

Twin Spin Thursday:1930 & 2002 Northwest Regattas: MISS MADISON

In honor of the upcoming Vintage Iceboat Show and 4LIYC Annual Picnic, here's a salute to MISS MADISON, one of the vintage stern steerers that will be set up along with MARY B, MENACE, and other iceboats. MISS MADISON, built around 1927, was the last "Madison style" that Bill Bernard ever built. The Hudson River style of ice yacht, such as the MARY B, ultimately proved to be a faster design. MENACE is also a Madison-style stern steerer.

Ice sailing - what will soon be a common sight. Bill Dale in a C Skeeter on Lake Monona, January 23, 2016. Photo Carrie Pok.

More Bitter

October is the time to take a look at what the weather forecasters predict for iceboating season and it looks to be a good one at least for the midwest. Read more about it on Accuweather and Weatherbell. The only guarantee in iceboating is that there will be sailable ice at sometime, somewhere in North America!

Twin Spin Thursday:1941 & 2016 ISA Regattas: Dogs & Cats Edition

2016 International Skeeter Association regatta winner, Steve Orlebeke, posted a great photo of his puppy, Mac, posing with the regatta trophy on his Facebook page today. This gave me the idea to post a related photo from the 1941 ISA and to kick off a new version of Throw Back Thursday with a twist. A related contemporary photo will be included with the vintage photo as a reminder that a new season is just weeks away.
1941 ISA Regatta report and video here
2016 ISA Regatta report and photos here.

"Harken, Slingshot and the Sailing Speed Record"

"Our favorite, if not our most frustrating sport, is iceboating: a combination of race-car driving and sailing." - Olaf Harken. 'In an excerpt from his recently published memoir Fun Times in Boats, Blocks & Business, Harken Inc. co-founder Olaf Harken recalls the time his company helped try to break the world sailing speed record.' Continue reading, from SAIL magazine.
Tip of the Helmet: Loretta Rehe

Breaking Bad

Tip of the Helmet to Thunder Bay DNer Mike Madge who sent a link to this story about the possible return of an ice breaker to his city. The ice breaker was decommissioned in 1984. Read more here.

  • What an impressive line up of Skeeters. The Pewaukee Skeeter IOU is Bill Perrigo with his 30 ft. Mead Skeeter.

  • Jim Lunder and Bill Mattison on the FRITZ.

  • Bill Mattison and Jim Lunder on the FRITZ.
Throw Back Northwest Thursday: 1948 Northwest at Geneva Lake

I came across these photos while searching through the Life Magazine photo archives for the 1962 issue with a Pewaukee Skeeter on the cover. It brought me back to a few weeks ago, sitting on Bill and Mauretta Mattison's lake side porch with a group of old friends who gathered to reminisce about the stern steerers MENACE, MARY B, and Madison iceboating history. Bill shared the story of the time he crewed for Jim Lunder on FRITZ at the 1948 Northwest and how they won the regatta. The last A stern steerer race was sailed in dimming light at the end of the day. During the race, Bill and Jim sailed into Williams Bay which was not a good place to be sailing an iceboat in near darkness because at that time, ice was harvested there and slabs of ice were piled all over the bay. With a lot of luck, Jim Lunder piloted the FRITZ around the ice blocks without hitting them and made it to the finish line in the darkness. Life's photos from that regatta are posted here. Northwest regatta winners posted here.

4LIYC Meeting Dates

Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club meeting dates have been confirmed. Our first club meeting of the 2016-2017 season is on November 9 at 6:30 PM back at Angelo's Italian Restaurant. See the sidebar on the right for all the dates. Bring your appetites because Angelo's will again offer their all you can eat pizza and pasta buffet for $10. (A bit of a price increase from last year but still a bargain.)

Runner Tracks Magazine

The September issue of the online magazine of the International DN Ice Yacht Racing Associattion has been delivered to a virtual mailbox near you. See it here. Took that shot of 4LIYC DNer Dave Elsmo sailing on Lake Kegonsa last season from Jeff Russell's Cub plane.

MARY B by Gretchen Dorian

Vote Iceboat

The Dane County Office of Lakes & Watersheds is holding a photography contest, "Beyond the Water’s Edge". Gretchen Dorian submitted 4 photos from last season's Northwest regatta sailed on Lake Monona and DN Western Region Commodore Mike Miller has submitted two from the DN North Americans also sailed on Lake Monona. It's always amazing to me that people who have grown up here don't know what an important place this area has been for ice sailing and that our sport helps to make Dane County a special place to live.
"The voting period has now begun. Please encourage your friends to check out the photo contest webpage and vote for their favorite water-related image. Voting ends at midnight on September 18, 2016. Voters can cast 1 vote per day for the duration of the voting period." So get over there and vote early and often.

Dancing Skates: Now Translated

UPDATE: Via Bill Buchholz: "..the [Monotype] class is still very active in Europe under the auspices of the International Monotype XV Ice Yacht Racing Association: Monotype-XV iceyacht. You never know, some one in this country might become smitten with the boat and actually build one! Can you imagine?"
Ed.: Yes, I can imagine because Bill was the first person to build one here in North America! I know that this vintage German newsreel about ice sailing has been posted here before but I'm not sure if I've ever seen it with English subtitles. Anyways, it never gets old.

  • Samorezov Victor Konstantinovich (1919-1993) "Buyeristy" 1959

  • Murniyek Laimdot Petrovich (1922-2011) "Buyery" 1956

  • Ozol Janums Augustovich (1929-2014) "Before the Start " 1963

  • Nisskii Grigorii Georgievich (1903-1987) "Pestovo" 1953
Like: Russian Impressionist Iceboat Paintings

Above are a few Russian impressionist paintings are from a Facebook post by Dmitry Romashov who tagged some of his fellow iceboating countrymen. These exquisite paintings, created by several artists, are beautifully rendered canvases that capture the light, ice, movement, and color familiar to all iceboaters around the world.

Another addition is Right-of-Way rule 8.a which states: “When yachts sailing ON-THE-WIND on opposite tacks are approaching a MARK, the PORT TACK yacht shall keep clear of the STARBOARD TACK yacht.” Click here to see all 9 animations.

Animated: Start, Darling Mark Course & New Weather Mark ROW Guide

4LIYC DNer Dave Elsmo (who is the Sailing Program Manager and Head Coach of the UW Hoofer Sailing Club) created 9 animations to help illustrate the recent changes made by the National Iceboat Authority. These animations cover properly starting, approaching marks on a darling mark course, finishing a darling mark course, and Right-of-Way rule 8.a. See Dave's informative work here.

National Iceboat Authority: Change Summary to 2015 Racing Rules

Last week, the National Iceboat Authority released a new version of the NIA Constitution & Racing Rules which includes two new race course configurations, the DARLING COURSE and INLINE COURSE which may be used as alternatives to the STANDARD COURSE we’ve been using for many years. (Click here to see last week's post.)Today, NIA board member, Tim McCormick has released a summary which briefly describes the changes which have been made to the NIA 2015 Racing Rules. Click here to read the summary.

National Iceboat Authority: Important Announcement

The National Iceboat Authority is happy to announce the release of a new version of the NIA Constitution & Racing Rules. (Click here to see new version.) This new version includes two new race course configurations called DARLING COURSE and INLINE COURSE which may be used as alternatives to the STANDARD COURSE we’ve been using for many years. This allows race committees to select a course which is most appropriate for their ice sailing event. The new racing rules also contain:

  • Updated definitions and clauses to support the use of the DARLING COURSE or INLINE COURSE.
  • Clarification on yachts which must keep clear while approaching the windward MARK on opposite TACKS.
  • Updated restrictions on propulsion.
  • A new rule which prohibits sailing between the LEEWARD MARK and the starting line immediately after the start.
Please feel free to contact any of the NIA Directors with questions or comments.
UPDATE 11-13-2015:NIA board member, Tim McCormick, has created a summary which briefly describes the changes which have been made to the NIA 2015 Racing Rules. Read his report here.

Previous posts from the 2015-2016 season here.