Now that the last boat is in and all the appeals are resolved, I get to do the fun part. I get to write about the individual races and teams, and show you who won and how they did it!
Before I get to that though, let me take a moment to remind everyone about the real purpose behind Solstice Challenge; it was a fundraiser to support SAIL4LIFE.
The American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life is a major fundraising event in real life, and in Second Life as well.
Since the first sailboats appeared in Linden water, sailors have taken an active role in RFL through fundraising events coordinated by their Sail For Life team.
The interest and commitment to Sail For Life has expanded and deepened over time, and this year under co-captains Aislin Keyes, Chad Sawson, and Fanci Beebe, S4L’s put together a full dance card of great events that should interest any resident of SL, whether they sail or not!
The “New York 30 Solstice Challenge” regatta was a good example of the common commitment of many people here. For some time Dale Irata had planned a SAILstice event that weekend, coordinating it with similar activities in real life yacht clubs. Kentrock Messmer also wanted to stage a High Roller’s race regatta that day, repeating a very popular event from last year. While we all tried to come up with the best fit for the limited time available, Divine Providence interceded. Well, actually it was Jacqueline Trudeau. 🙂 Just as we were putting the event together, Trudeau Yachts launched a great new boat, the New York 30. Trudeau offered to give each of the S4L race teams a boat in return for their donation as a way to encourage participation and increase the number of contributions for the event. Her offer was remarkably generous, but it was quickly paralleled by commitments from several others to match the entry donations of the contestants.
Well, the sailors came through, and we got our sixteen teams… but something surprising happened along the way. Estate owners and SL residents came up and offered to sponsor race teams and to match what the racers were all contributing. Francois Jacques and Vin Mariani raised the stakes even higher; they each offered to match the racer donations, but then they pledged to donate an additional 50% for any new match donations from that point on.
Wow, the response was pretty wonderful.
There were sixteen teams that each donated $L5,000 to race. In several cases sponsors jumped in to cover entry fees or made open-ended donations to the fleet, so no sailor was turned away because they couldn’t afford the entry.
Then thirteen wonderful residents and estate owners bellied up to the table to cheer on the fleet. They matched those team donations in large and small amounts. Their help and encouragement was the stuff that makes SL great, and they are guardian angels of the sailing community. Please give them a High-5 and a big hug when you see them!
Allie Tomsen, Armano Xaris, Charlz Price, David Wetherby, Elbag Gable, Francois Jacques, MarkTwain White, Nber Medici, Jane Fossett, Laycee Deed, OlOwl Magic, Taku Raymaker, and Vin Mariani.
Since we let sailors donate into any convenient kiosk, I can only tell you about the contributions I know of; if you think I’ve missed any, please let me know. Having said that, the weekend regatta raised $L80,000 from team entry donations, and $L477,000 from matching donors.
Francois and Vin matched a share of those donations with an extra $L150,500, and I’m happy to report that over half the race fleet were decked out in Woodstock teeshirts, triggering an additional donation from Fran for $L10,000.
Now go look in the mirror and say thanks to yourself for such a fantastic display of kindness, generosity, and support for SAIL4LIFE.
Good job, SLSailing!
(Not bad for a weekend with your friends, playing with toy boats!)