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  • 3 Jul 2022 5:12 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    From the Commodore

    Happy 4th of July!  I hope your celebrations are fun, safe and patriotic.  There have already been a few disturbances in the Gulf, so make sure you have that hurricane plan ready to go.  I was reviewing last months newsletter and realized that I forgot to mention Space City Weather, which is a GREAT source for our area specifically.

    My husband and I just got back from our vacation in the BVI’s where we bareboot chartered a 45 foot catamaran.  We had a great time and if you have the opportunity to charter (power or sail) in the BVI’s, we suggest you do it!  We also suggest, you provision to eat on the boat a lot because dining out in the BVI’s is a little pricey. 

    It’s hot hot hot outside, and one way to cool off is to use our boats on the water!  There’s a lot of openings for leading a cruise in July, just get in touch in with Bryan and he’ll help you get it set up!  July is also a great time to practice our anchoring  skills.  Some great locations to anchor include, Nassau Bay, Red Fish Island, Offatts Bayou or even the small islands near Smith Point. 

    Be safe out there! 

  • 3 Feb 2022 8:46 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    January has been a very busy month. I have to say that my first month as commodore has been like drinking from a fire hose!! Our first board meeting, our first monthly meeting, the orientation meeting AND the planning meeting. It has been a whirlwind for sure. I am just so thrilled with how well attended the orientation meeting and the planning meeting were. We have a lot of events and cruises on the calendar and we are looking forward to adding more! Thank you to everyone who attended.

    A big thank you to Sharon Guzzino, who jumped in to chair the Boatique! She will be getting trained in February and ready for our February meeting. She is a new member and I love seeing new members get involved. I would encourage everyone to get involved and with Spring Fling in May, there are a lot of opportunities. 

    If you haven’t done so, please be sure to renew your membership and update your profiles in the directory. 

    I am anxiously awaiting the warmer weather, but in the meantime, there is a lot of stuff to do with TMCA! I hope to see you at Noah’s Ark this Friday and you won’t want to miss Mardi Gras in Galveston!!

    See you there!!

    Cookie Johnson Commodore

    “Live your dream, don’t dream your life!!” (Bob Bitchin)

  • 2 Nov 2021 3:49 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm 

    As this year is winding down, I look back and am pleased with how well TMCA has come back from various unforeseen events.  We have gained many new members, had many cruises and parties, as well as many interesting speakers and educational opportunities. With our fun members, we always have a good time whenever we get together.       

    I was proud to see so many TMCA members supporting the Harvest Moon Regatta this year both by land and sea.  We had 10 TMCA boats participating this year!  Cheers to all - it is an exciting and challenging accomplishment. Congratulations to Ben Miller on Flyer - the winner of our TMCA trophy for 2021! 

    Please plan to attend our Annual Meeting on Friday, November 19, where we will review our year with the officers’ annual reports and officially announce the newly elected Board for 2022. (Since there were no competed positions, we voted by acclamation at the October meeting and declared the nominees elected.)

    Congratulations to our officers for 2022:

    • ·         Commodore – Cookie Johnson
    • ·         Vice Commodore – Frank Kleinburg
    • ·         Rear Commodore – Emily Ribas
    • ·         Port Captain – Janet Abraham
    • ·         Cruise Captain – Bryan Griesbach
    • ·         Treasurer – Rick Huessner
    • ·         Secretary – Doris Hill

    Our organization is 100% volunteer, so we are only as successful as those who give back to the club.  It is a great way to get involved and meet other members.  There are various ways you can contribute, such as volunteering to take over the Boatique.  Just think, you can have input on the style and color, etc. of the TMCA product that may be ordered next year.  Please let me know if you would like more information.

    Plans are almost complete, and invitations will be mailed soon for our annual Commodores Ball, Awards Ceremony and Change of Watch to be held on Saturday, December 18 at Lakewood Yacht Club.  I hope you will plan to join us for this traditional event.

    So far, no one has offered to lead the French PeekNeek cruise to Double Bayou Pasture, but if anyone is interested in arranging a group to go, please contact John Boswell.  If you are new and would like more history of this event, contact me – I’ll be glad to share a few of the fun stories I’ve been told.  It doesn’t require much planning and there are several experienced members who can share local knowledge for navigating.

    As I always say, “The more you participate in TMCA, the more you will gain from it and the more FUN you will have!”  Join us for an event and find out.

    I hope everyone will have a nice Thanksgiving Holiday with family and friends.  Many of us have much to be thankful for.

    Ladye Jane Stone  

    Commodore 2021

  • 5 Oct 2021 4:02 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm

    Ladye Jane Stone, Commodore


    We have a diverse group with diverse interests and a variety of boating opportunities in our area, along the Gulf coast and around the world.  This week several of our members traveled south to Port Aransas, while others are in Florida. Some are traveling in Spain, Greece, and Italy and with today’s technology, I’m able to share in their travels through messages and pictures.  I can experience different water, scenery, and architecture without even being there.  Of course, it’s not the same as being there, but it’s a virtual adventure that I wouldn’t have if not for my TMCA friends.  Just one more benefit I have gained from our boating family.

    October is a busy month for TMCA!  Allen’s Landing Cruise, Nominees’ speeches, dock party, the Harvest Moon Regatta and the Chilly Chili Halloween Cruise.  Something in this mix should be of interest for everyone.

    Allen’s Landing is one of my favorite cruises.  It’s amazing to see our boats docked in downtown Houston surrounded by the lit skyline.  Whether you come by boat or by car, I hope you’ll join us for the unique festivities of the weekend.  Friday evening, Ben Reyna will entertain us with his songs and interesting stories of the history of the coffee house building and Saturday we’ll explore the pubs in some of the oldest buildings in Texas.

    If you can make an afternoon trip to Galveston on Thursday, Oct. 21, I highly recommend driving down to watch the start of the HMR.  It’s an amazing site to see 100s of sailboats along the seawall!  And if you have never attended the awards ceremony and Rum party in Port Aransas on the following Saturday, I suggest you do that sometime.  You don’t have to be a sailor to enjoy the festivities.

    The past month, the Nominating Committee canvased our membership to find volunteers for next year's officer positions and I am appreciative and excited that these members are interested in giving back to the club in this capacity. 

    • ·         Commodore – Cookie Johnson
    • ·         Vice Commodore – Frank Kleinburg
    • ·         Rear Commodore – Emily Ribas
    • ·         Port Captain – Janet Abraham
    • ·         Cruise Captain – Bryan Griesbach
    • ·         Treasurer – Rick Huessner
    • ·         Secretary – Doris Hill

    Our organization functions through volunteers and nominations are still open.  It is a great way to get involved and meet other members.  If you would like to volunteer or nominate someone for any of these positions, or perhaps help on a committee, please contact me.  You can read about the committees here:

    All nominees will give their speeches at the October meeting and these are typically very entertaining, so please plan to attend. 

    Meanwhile, your current Board continues to work diligently behind the scenes on business matters, planning events and making improvements in club functions.  I want to thank all the 2021 Board members who continue to give their time, talents, and energy to ensure TMCA continues to run efficiently.

    Remember, the more you participate in TMCA, the more you will gain from it and the more FUN you will have!

    Ladye Jane Stone  

    Commodore 2021

  • 8 Sep 2021 1:43 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm 

    According to a recent article, Clear Lake is the third-largest pleasure boat basin in the nation and Texas ranks sixth in the U.S. for registered recreational boaters.  I think any of us that take our boats out on a weekend can agree with that by the number of boats making their way through the channel out to the bay.  There is no better way to enjoy the hot days of summer than being on the water, and in Texas, summer extends into September.  We’re fortunate to be able to boat practically year ‘round, but you don’t have to own a boat to participate in TMCA activities.  You can drive to most of our events, so no reason not to enjoy!  Allen’s Landing Cruise has a second registration for those coming by land or that would like to ride on one of the boats that are registered, so please check the calendar for info.

    We were also fortunate that Ida chose a path to our east, though LA and MS were not as fortunate.  I have friends in Biloxi that move their boat along with many other live-aboard and commercial vessels to a hurricane hole.  They have a process of securing to land, each vessel to another, and dinghying lines across like a spider web.  It works well and while it was rough, all are ok and awaiting an all clear to return to harbor.  Sadly, LA will again have to rebuild.  I saw that some members are collecting donations - thank you.

    As I’ve previously mentioned, we are organizing the Nominating Committee to begin our search for next year’s potential officers.  Per the by-laws, the Committee will consist of myself, the Trustees, a member for 5 or more years and a member for 2 years or less.  I have also asked any current officer not planning to volunteer again, to participate, because I feel their input for the responsibilities of each office are invaluable.  The committee’s role is to canvas the membership for those interested in giving back to the club and present our suggestions, along with your nominations, to the members to be voted on the next month.  Our organization functions through volunteers.  If you are interested in one of the leadership positions or possibly contributing on a committee, please contact me or one of the current Board members.  Volunteering is a great way to get involved and meet new people and it is not as demanding as you might think.  The more that help, the easier it is and it can be a lot of Fun!

    Here’s a link to the club By-Laws including the Board Member and Committee duties:

    Remember, the more you participate in TMCA, the more you will gain from it and the more FUN you will have!

    When perusing boat ads, I find that many boats are equipped with autopilot and bow-thrusters to help steer and avoid potential bumps when maneuvering … wouldn’t it be nice if we had similar built-in functions to make navigating life a little easier? 

    Ladye Jane Stone  

    Commodore 2021

  • 10 Aug 2021 9:46 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm

    The first half of this year presented us with unique challenges to find creative ways to safely have meetings, educational and social events, and cruises. Your board rose to the occasion by finding fun ways to follow protocol and resume more traditional avenues for members to safely enjoy boating and social activities with friends, participate in meetings remotely and continue to expand their boating knowledge and skills. I’m thrilled that our summer is filled with so many activities, but as the restrictions lessen, we unfortunately are seeing the number of cases increase again, so I ask everyone to please remain vigilant and practice safety precautions when appropriate.  Don’t let that Sunshine State of Mind blind your good judgement …

    Another area that can affect us as boaters, for which we also need to be vigilant, is hurricane season (June 1 - November 30).  August is the beginning of the most active months and while 2021 is not expected to be as bad as last year, it is predicted to possibly have 13 to 20 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 6 to 10 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher).  Are you prepared?  Do you have a hurricane plan?

    Some suggestions: create a checklist, take inventory and pictures of items on your boat and of your boat for insurance, make copies of important paperwork, talk to other boaters on how your marina faired in previous storms, have a plan on what and how to secure (particularly if you live a distance away), make sure your fuel and water tanks are filled, ensure you have adequate dock lines, make friends with your neighbors and make an emergency contact list, consider what you might need if your marina is without power for an extended time and review your insurance policy.

    Here’s a good hurricane preparedness article from BoatUS.

    August is also when we organize the Nominating Committee to begin our search for next year’s potential officers.  Can you believe it is already that time?!  I will need at least two members to please volunteer – one who has been a member for 5 or more years and one who has been a member for 2 years or less.  Please contact me if you would like to help with this process.  It’s fun and informative to learn how the props go ‘round behind the scenes of TMCA – we not only need your input but welcome it.

    Another committee we’ll need volunteers for, that you’ll be hearing about from our Rear Commodore, is for the Commodore’s Ball.  Chris started planning for this in January but will begin actively working on all the details this month.  Even if you might not have done this sort of thing before, that isn’t a reason not to now!  If that were the case, Pier Pressure and I might not have ever left the slip. (many hands make light work)

    Come on, jump in, the water’s great!  …the more you participate in TMCA, the more you will gain from it and the more FUN you will have! 

    Ladye Jane Stone  

    Commodore 2021

  • 6 Jul 2021 5:10 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm

    Five years ago, TMCA made history with our first trip to Cuba. It was not just history for our group, but as we understood, it was also the first time in Cuban history that a group of Texans or any foreign pleasure boating group was allowed to sail into Havana Harbor since their revolution nearly 60 years ago.  One image that truly touched me was seeing an older Cuban gentleman sitting on the Malecón, Havana’s boardwalk, playing the Star Spangled Banner to us on his trumpet as we sailed by.  I was very proud to have our officer flags flying and to represent TMCA at the Hemingway Yacht Club presentation.  We had four of our 2016 officers onboard for that cruise.        

    One year ago, TMCA had to cancel most of our cruises and dock parties due to the pandemic, but our officers carried on the business of the club while several members came up with creative ideas to continue their boating activities.  I was proud of how we persevered though a trying time.

    A month ago, TMCA brought back our traditional themed style cruise to Moody with unique games, music and shared meals.  There was a large attendance with a full marina, anchored boats and several that arrived by land and everyone that participated had a fabulous time.  You all continue to make me proud to be a part of such a fun group of boaters.

    And just last week, I visited Jackson Yacht Club in Mississippi and near the entrance I was greeted by our TMCA burgee that I personally exchanged with them several years ago.  … another moment of pride.

    This weekend we celebrate not only our country’s independence, but our freedom to reengage in activities we might have taken for granted just a year ago. Gathering with friends for cookouts, swimming, boating and fireworks.  We can all be proud of our diligence as our nation rebounds from such unprecedented times. 

    The heat of summer is upon us and what better way to enjoy it than on the water – get out and sail, get out and play, soak up the sun and have some fun, make some memories.  We have a lot of activities planned in July, so I hope you will join in.  If you’re new to TMCA and not sure how things work, please contact me or any of the officers to assist you with how to find information on the website, with registration and/or how to join the TMCA Facebook group, so you don’t miss anything - because the more you participate in TMCA, the more you will gain from it and the more FUN you will have! 

    "It's a goodly life that you lead, friends; no doubt the best in the world, if only you are strong enough to lead it!'

    'Yes, it's the life, the only life, to live,' responded the Water Rat dreamily ... “
    ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

    “Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.”

    Ladye Jane Stone  

    Commodore 2021

  • 4 Jun 2021 1:32 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm

    We are all eager to get out and enjoy some outdoor activities, as was evident in that we had 3 cruises planned Memorial weekend.  Ken & Kelly Hutchinson organized a lot of fun and creative events for their cruise to Moody. I loved seeing a mix of old and new members participating. I hope everyone will try to participate in some of the activities TMCA has planned this summer.  Whether it is a few hours on the weekend at one of our social events or one of our many TMCA cruises.

    On our cruise back from Moody aboard Calypso, I was reminded how lucky we are to be able to enjoy our boating lifestyle and by the amount of boats sharing the water with us, that I wasn’t the only one thinking that way!  I’m so proud to be part of TMCA and such a great group of boaters who always try to operate their boats in a safe, knowledgeable and courteous way.  Fly those TMCA burgees proudly and keep up the great seamanship!  Take a moment to review the TMCA Boating Best Practices and remember to exercise them.

    June 1 is the beginning of hurricane season (although, there were a few boats anchored in Offatts Bayou this weekend that may have thought it started early). Take this time to review your hurricane preparation plans with fellow boaters. With all the boating experience in our club, we can all learn something new.  How will you secure your boat?  Identify the extra lines and fenders to use, how to remove bimini canvas and sails and how you will shut down your boat with the assumption you may not be able to return to it for several days or even weeks.  If you live away from the area, have a buddy in the marina that can keep an eye on your boat and you informed of the conditions.

    One of the things I think TMCA really does well, is sharing information on subjects like navigation, new technologies, engine maintenance, boat systems, anchoring, docking and safety equipment.  I’m always impressed with the wealth of knowledge that is readily shared by our members. Members are always comparing lessons learned after their cruises and day trips on the bay. Whether its new waypoints, hazard locations, a new product or just a great place to go to, there is always an exchange of information going on. Hopefully this will help us all have a safer and more enjoyable time while using our boats!

    Remember, your input and participation are what helps TMCA continue to thrive.  Encourage some new TMCA members to attend some of our activities, offer some experience, or simply share a fun story from a recent event.  Remind them that the more they participate in TMCA, the more they will gain from it and the more FUN they will have! 

    Ladye Jane Stone  

    Commodore 2021

  • 3 May 2021 1:22 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm

    In life, we often hear about ‘how it used to be’… with TMCA, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.  I love history and can listen for hours to our members’ stories and almost always learn something from them.  Hank Knippa, Commodore 2001, sent me a few articles from some of our original members and I want to share one with you written by Tom Campbell, Commodore 1983 & 1986.


    As one of two last founding members of the TMCA, Jim McIntyre and I were
    asked to provide a few articles that would help the newer members visualize what life was like way back in the "Good Old Days" or as Babs Streisand sang it "The Way We Were".  Our goals were pretty much the same, but our methods may have been somewhat different, if not considered antiquated from our lack of experience and foresight. I would like to give a little overview that I wrote for our ten-year anniversary that sort of explains our humble beginning.

    Though we did not realize it at the time, the actual beginning of the club started with the placing of signs at the entrances to Watergate and Seabrook Marinas, "CRUISE TO REDFISH SATURDAY-MEET AT MARKER #2 AT 10:00 A.M. The same memo was also put into the monthly billing letters of the same marinas. This worked very well for a few months but choosing not to take advantage of our gracious "Dock Lords", we developed a list of people and we started doing our own mailing and calling. This was catalyst enough and in a short time the exercise became too time consuming and costly to continue as a hobby. A meeting was called at Vince's Fuel Dock in Watergate and the name Texas Mariners Cruising Association was adopted.

    Since the cruising club was a new idea for us and many of us were fairly inexperienced boaters, a giant learning curve was there to negotiate. Some of our first adventures on this learning curve produced things such as a ten-boat raft up on one anchor in twenty-five knot winds and we wondered why we were dragging at 2:00 A.M. as a thunderstorm passed over our anchorage. One time at Sabine Pass, we lost five anchors due to our lack of foresight, skills and experience. Like they say, "Experience is the best teacher", except she charges for her services.

    I recall one of our first Turkey Day Cruises when we had twenty-one boats rafted up at the U-Tote-UM store in Offatts Bayou. I am not sure what brand it is now, but that is the one over on 61st Street. We had turkey and all the trimmings and served all the food from one boat.

    Some of our first meetings were navigation classes on how to get to Red Fish Island because we were losing "Mariners" in route to the tropical pile of oyster shells and beer cans. To our amazement, there were many people that did not know of life beyond Redfish, so more sophisticated and extensive navigation classes were required.

    Some of our first meeting places were the storage room of what is now the Claudio's, the Busch Brewery, Clear Lake Park, personal homes and offices. As the club grew and matured, the need for better defined rules and procedures were required. Terms like "By Laws" and "Roberts Rules of Order" were as common as "Starboard Tack", "Trim the Jib" and "While you're down there". It took several years of hard work by many people, but organization finally came. Even though we are not perfect, I think we are far ahead of whatever club is in second place, so if I may use some words from a noted News Broadcaster Water Cronkite, "That is the way it was and the way it is", and it is up to us to make it how it is going to be.
       Good Cruising,
       Captain Tom Campbell

    It amazes me how far we’ve come, yet how much of TMCA’s initial intent remains the same.  We can continue to help the newer members, not just visualize, but experience ‘how it used to be’, because we still enjoy the same things today.  The common thread in those articles was the same we share now – our love of boating, our desire to learn to be better boaters, our comradery, sense of adventure and having fun!


    I continue to be encouraged by the number of new members, the attendance at our meetings, the participation in dock parties, cruises and social events, as well as the feedback I receive from members.  Your input and participation are what helps TMCA continue to thrive. 

    We have 4 cruises, a return to traditional style dock party, our monthly meeting and the W.O.W. class planned in May, so the calendar is active.  Hopefully there is something that interests you and you will join us for some of the upcoming events.

    I have also added information for Tom Smith’s Burial at Sea Services on May 23rd.  Myrna Smith was very moved that some members had expressed interest in paying tribute to him.  If any boats want to cruise down to give him a send-off with TMCA Burgees flying, please contact me.

    Burial at Sea Ceremony for Tom Smith

    TMCA Founder and First Commodore 

    May 23, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    The family will depart from Galveston Yacht Basin, Dock B.

    Any members that would like to pay tribute by boat or land, please contact and we can coordinate. 


    If you have some new TMCA members in your marina, please introduce yourself and encourage them to attend some of our activities.  Maybe tell them one of our stories, offer experience on a project or help them navigate our website. Let them know that the more you participate in TMCA, the more you will gain from it and the more FUN you will have! 

    Ladye Jane Stone

    Commodore 2021

  • 12 Apr 2021 1:42 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the Helm

    Spring has arrived and it comes with a continued sense of optimism.  We are off to a great start this year with good attendance at all our events and we want to keep this momentum going, so please check the calendar often for updates and join us at some of our upcoming activities.

    A member asked that I post something about the Rules of the Road and my first thought was ‘Big Boat Wins!’, but we all know there is much more to learn.  Navigation Rules are regulations which aid mariners in safe navigation, just as driving laws aid vehicles in safe driving.  All mariners should know and understand the Rules. The Rules are legally binding and application of them makes the waterways safer for everyone.

    Similarly, are Best Practices to follow in our business dealings, the Golden Rules in our daily activities and most recently, guidelines to follow during the pandemic.  Rules and Guidelines are intended to protect us – the better you understand them, the more you can see how they benefit.


    You can learn more about Rules of Navigation through USCG, Boat US, ASA courses and our upcoming W.O.W. class.

    We received sad news this month that Tom Smith, one of our Founding Members and our First Commodore passed away February 28th.

    He wrote an article about TMCA for Texas Sailing in 1981 which described the benefits and experiences of the organization.  It stated that they had 160 members and listed 15 cruises (1 of which was to Gulfport, MS)

     It all started informally with 18 people at Vince’s Boat Stop in Oct. 1978 and they decided on the name.  In Feb. 1979 they met officially, elected officers and worked with an attorney to develop the bylaws.

    He ended the article with “We have such a hell of a good time. It’s a way of life with us we really enjoy…”

    From his wife Myrna:

    "Tom was so proud of how the organization grew, but as he got older and since we live in Spring Texas, it got a lot more difficult to go down to Watergate marina. ​

    Sadly he went into Alzheimer’s disease about eight years ago, which precluded his ability to do anything with the Organization. ​

    The fact that three men got together and started this and it became what it is today was one of his proudest achievements. ​

    We still have so many photos of various parties and trips and his boat, Popeye. ​

    Since he had such a love for sailing, which included Galveston, he wants his ashes spread in Galveston Bay and we will do that in May."       

    I will post more information as I receive and perhaps a fleet of TMCA boats can pay tribute to him.  We are also attempting to add this article on the TMCA website.

    If you’re a new member, or a long-time member getting back involved, please wear your name tags.  Engage someone you don’t know and find out what kind of boat they have or want – you’ll quickly find that you’ve made a new friend.

    Be smart and stay safe on the water or land and never hesitate to ask …a little ‘Pier Pressure’ with a smile is encouragement.

    The more you participate in TMCA, the more you will gain from it and the more FUN you will have! 

    Ladye Jane Stone

    Commodore 2021

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