Thursday, May 21, 2009

Sarasota, Florida seeks ties with Cuba. Sarasotians plan to race a yacht in Havana.

INTERESTED? "Today's forum is open to the public and will begin at 6 p.m. with a cocktail reception. Tickets for the reception are $20 and include two drinks along with Cuban appetizers. The club's dining room is open for dinner, and credit cards are accepted. The club is at 1100 John Ringling Blvd. in Sarasota. For more information, call 365-4191, or visit"

This time, it is not just a rumor, like when I read in the newspaper of Sarasota an article about some Japanese professional team would play ball here in this beatiful city of nice people (I immediately communicates to NHK in Tokyo and was told "they know nothing of case"),BUT this time has been set up in Sarasota, Florida LIKE AN Organizing Committee of the Sarasota Yacht Club for sailing in Cuba, as well as the task to links to some institutions of our county with "socias" ( as cinema festivals, ballet, fine art, museums...)in the caribbean island. I had have talked up the boat captains who are experienced in the matter, and they told me that with good weather, Sarasota, Florida with the best beaches and enviroment in Florida, similars to Guanabo in Havana and Santa Maria, is just three and half hours in yacht to "Marina Hemingway". Here is the information that appears today on page BUSSINES from "Sarasota Herald Tribune" Click here to view complete information.
Staff Report
Published: Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 1:00 a.m. Last Modified: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 8:54 p.m.
SARASOTA - Tapping into what seems like thawing relations between the United States and Cuba, the Sarasota Yacht Club is hosting a forum today to discuss steps to rebuild nautical ties -- and maybe more -- between the two nations.

Press Releases
Club Would Also Host Prestigious Florida-Cuba Race

Cuba’s sailing team has invited Sarasota Yacht Club (SYC) to participate in an offshore race near Havana, restoring a 70-year-old international tradition.
Citing the Sarasota club’s distinguished nautical heritage, the Hemingway International Yacht Club (HIYC) in Havana extended an invitation for U.S. boaters to compete in the Regatta Castillo del Morro,a 15-mile race from Marina Hemingway to the port of Havana and back.
The SYC sailing team, headed by Jay Meyer, recently applied to the U.S. government for permission to participate in the June 6th regatta. “We see this as a chance to renew friendships between two nations that once enjoyed spirited competitions,” said Meyer. “We have also been asked to help coach or train the less experienced Cuban sailors on the technical side of the sport, a cultural exchange that would help bridge the 50-year gap between our two nations.”
Jose Escrich, commodore of the Hemingway Club and vice president of the Cuban Sailing Federation, also invited the Sarasota Yacht Club to be the official U.S. host for a Florida Gulf Coast – Cuba offshore race, reviving a sporting event that began back in the 1930s.
“We realized we had to get to Cuba on our boats in order to race there, so why not race on our way to Cuba,” said Don Payzant, SYC fleet captain and board member. “We are hopeful that the new administration will support our efforts to reinstate this famous race,”
Escrich noted that the Sarasota Yacht Club was selected to participate in the regatta and host the prospective Florida-Cuba race because of its recognized commitment to the sport of sailing and reputation for supporting the sport.
He also noted that there is a rich history of friendship between the Cuban Sailing Team and the U.S. boating community, noting that Gulf Coast area yacht clubs regularly competed with the Hemingway Club and other Cuban teams until 1959 when the dramatic change in Cuba’s leadership changed U.S.-Cuban travel arrangements.
“Travel to Cuba is still heavily regulated, but there are exceptions made on a case-by-case basis,” said Meyer. “Our application explains that all U.S. sailors would be staying on our own boats and bringing our own provisions, so we would not be spending any money in Cuba.”
While waiting word from Washington, the Sarasota Yacht Club is planning a series of events to generate interest in a Florida-Cuba race, including speakers, parties and nautical forums. Media Questions - Please Contact Allison Moore at 941-961-3708
5/21/2009 11:46:32 PM EST
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