2017 Maine Island Packet Rendezvous
The 16th Biennial Maine Island Packet Rendezvous was another outstanding event hosted by our wonderful IPY Dealers, Norm and Mary Pierce, of Boothbay Harbor Maine. There were 32 yachts represented plus Darrell and Leslie Allen, the majority owners of Hake Marine, the owners of Island Packet Yachts, Blue Jacket Yachts and Seaward Yachts! Yes, the factory is making all three brands of yachts. This Maine rendezvous is always a really great event. This year, with the new owners making the flight up from Largo Florida, the event was even more special. There is an excitement in air that the IP owners and IP dealers are breathing because of Darrell and Leslie. We all can feel it, they are working very hard and there is good news coming from the factory daily. Currently in production is an IP 379 and several Seward Yachts. Make sure you follow all the action at the factory by following their Facebook page here:
To recap the 2017 Maine IP Rendezvous, many sailed in from all over the east coast and some came by planes and cars. One couple, Maris and Linda of IP 420 AMEKAYA, came in from the Rio Dulce, Guatemala, Central America where their 420 is currently stored. They are on a land based tour until they return to continue their Caribbean Sea sailing. Also noteworthy are Nate and Melba of IP350 Travelin’ Light who sailed from Florida expressly to attend the Maine Rendezvous. The fleet of boats had been gathering all during the week. The event kickoff happened Friday night with a very fun and filling pot luck dinner at the local church social hall. With dishes such as moose chili, smoked ham, and wonderful salads along with many desserts, no one left hungry. After dinner, Norm introduced Darrell and Leslie Allen, the factory owners, who gave us a welcome and an overview of the factory happenings. From there it was a short walk back to Cap'n Fish’s Harborside hotel overlooking Norm's dock with five Island Packets lit up and flying massive IP flags. You could not miss our location.
Saturday was a full day with breakfast at 0900 at the Boothbay Harbor Inn. After breakfast, we were treated to a presentation by the Boothbay Sea and Science Center which is an outstanding program for children to learn about boating and marine sciences. Following that presentation was one by the Boothbay Shipyard outlining their amazing restoration projects and services. Following these morning events, it was time to capture the world famous IPY Maine Rendezvous team photo wearing our colorful t-shirts. After this, everyone was free to explore town for lunch and then return for the afternoon discussions at 1400.
Norm presented a very interesting discussion on older Island Packet Yacht chain plates and that we all need to keep them sealed with GE Silproof. We also need to keep our rigs properly tuned every year to help prevent stress on the system. Norm talked about common maintenance items and many ABYC standards. Norm knows these Island Packet Yachts so well, which made it very interesting and informative to listen to his points and details about the many systems aboard. Following this was a detailed talk by Darrell and Leslie Allen, the factory owners, about the progression of buying the factory and the reorganizing of the facilities and manufacturing plant. We are all very excited for them and for the rebirth of our beloved IP product line. They will be introducing a new design that will be a smaller IP and will continue to build the current models at very very very good prices. If you are looking to buy a NEW Island Packet, then make sure you study up on the current factory prices, because they are offering some UNREAL DEALS. See all the prices and models on the factory website here:
With a short break after the factory talk, we all gathered again for a cocktail party overlooking the harbor followed by a delicious lobster or steak dinner at 1830 To cap off the night, everyone presented their ship’s poem to Norm and Mary. If you do not know about this tradition, then you would be caught by surprise and need to write one during dinner. Norm and Mary love poetry, so they request that we present them with a poem about our boats or sailing adventures. HOW FUN. It really is a very enjoyable activity and we have a good laugh as many are so creative. Once you present your poem, you are given an over flowing gift bag to end the night.
Sunday morning we all gathered at the dock side cafe for a breakfast and final socializing. We walked the docks and looked over the many yachts that Norm has commissioned. All of us thanked Norm and Mary for all they do for the Island Packet Yacht Family. By late morning, the fleet began to depart and this joyful event drew to a close. Thank you, Norm and Mary,for hosting the best IP Rendezvous. We will attend again in 2019!