2017 Harbor Host of the Year Finalists!
Below you will find the top four finalists, each with multiple nominations. Remember, it's YOUR vote that will decide who takes home the trophy!
Voting will be open February 5 through February 28. The voting will be "one Looper, one vote."
The four finalists are:
John & Juliet Calascibetta
John & Juliet can be found at the Great Kills Yacht Club in Staten Island, NY, welcoming loopers year after year. They share their knowledge of New York, provide transportation, directions, restaurant and sightseeing recommendations, docktails, and invites to club events.
"John has continuously gone over and beyond in assisting Loopers in the New York City Area by hosting them at the Great Kills Yacht Club. So much so, that even if he is absent, he has instilled the "Harbor Host" attitude into many of his fellow yacht club members! When we arrived in June, not one, not two, but FOUR yacht club members helped us find our slip, take our lines and welcome us like long lost friends! Then John arrived and apologized for his absence at our arrival!"
"We got a late start due to some weather and mechanical issues, arriving at Great Kills Yacht Club on November 15th, 2017 and the water on the docks was already turned off. John met us that afternoon on the dock and assisted me with running about 400 feet of hose out to our boat so we could fill our freshwater tank. It was getting quite cold, but John just jumped right into action and worked with me to get our tank filled. After the fill-up, he came aboard with a welcome packet that included a MetroCard, good for the entire bus and subway transportation system of New York City. He told us to just use the card, track the expenses that went on the card and pay him back before we left. Then he drove us to a great Italian Supermarket to stock up the boat."
"He personally handles the reservations, meets incoming boats to assist with docking, and drove us to the grocery for provisioning."
"He even regularly provides transportation (if possible) to get loopers to the train station (1 mile away) so they can get to the Staten Island Ferry to tour NYC. He arranges repairs at adjacent marinas and sources technicians if needed."
Francis Lavigne & Helene Lapointe
Francis and Helene can be found in Quebec along the Ottawa River.
"They offer their private dock to Loopers along a stretch of the Ottawa River with not too many alternatives. We were treated to cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, dinner and conversations that lasted into the night."
"Francis & Helene offered use of their dock while we took a side trip by plane to Nova Scotia. They were gracious and generous even dropping us off and picking us up from the airport one hour away!"
Bruce & Buffi Miller
The Millers haven't started their Loop yet, but they are as dedicated to their fellow Loopers as anyone. They provide Loopers with transportation, local knowledge and a meal at their restaurant in Cape May, NJ.
"They follow the forum and when you arrive, if you have been posting, they remember you. They had followed our forum posts on 'Waldhose' and showed up with a koozie in the form of a Life Jacket for Waldhose, and having found out that I was in the US Coast Guard, as was Bruce, brought me an Air Station Sticker for my door. That is getting to know someone."
They also received a nomination from another Harbor Host for repairs Bruce assisted with after damage from a middle-of-the-channel marker. "Bruce & Buffi showed up and immediately offered unlimited use of their pickup truck. Together we made a plan and I immediately set off to the nearest Lowe's to buy all the necessary parts required for a temporary repair so I could continue on my Loop. By the time I got back to the boat, Bruce had been home, picked up materials to facilitate all the temporary repairs. These included but were not limited to large pieces of wood, jacks, webbing, straps, tools, beer, etc). Everything damaged and outa place when I left, was already back in place, jacked up, pulled back into alignment, and ready to begin repairs. This would have been a big task for any 2 or 3 people.... Bruce did it alone!"
Buffi acknowledges that Bruce was thrust unknowingly into the Harbor Host role by coming home to his wife saying, "Honey, we are now the Harbor Hosts for Cape May." But he has jumped in with both feet, completely embracing the role. She also noted they receive shipments at their home for loopers, "Did you know that anchors come only wrapped in bubble wrap?"
Foster Schucker & Susan Wilson
Foster & Susan's home port is Bohemia Bay Yacht Harbor, in Chesapeake City, MD. They are quick to make you feel at home, selflessly sharing their knowledge of all things Great Loop and inviting Loopers to events at their local yacht club.
"He helped us get a slip for 2 weeks while we went home, he was so kind to come meet us at the boat when we arrived. He invited us to a great outing his yacht club put on, it was a wine glass swap and he even picked up a special wine glass for us to swap so we could be a part of the fun. The last day there he invited us to the Ice Cream social the club put on. He was just the best and such a good person with a wealth of information."
"Not only did he help me on the C&D canal, he has also helped me with weather issues on Lake Michigan and the Atlantic Ocean. Very knowledgeable always very helpful. "
"Not many Loopers stop at his home port itself, so Foster travels to Delaware City and greets the passing parade. He helped catch dock lines this last May when we passed through."
"We had communication with Foster leading up to our arrival at Bohemia Bay on November 27th, 2017 and it turned out that we would be arriving later in the afternoon than Foster could wait for us due to a previous commitment he had with some students in one of his robotics classes. So we arrived at Bohemia Bay to find that Foster had prepared the dock master for our arrival and all we had to do was dock the boat and everything else was taken care of for us.....While sitting in our salon around 6:30 pm there was a knock on our door and I opened the Salon slider to greet Foster! We were really pleased to meet him, but I asked why he was here so late and he said he had just gotten out of his robotics class and drove the 90 minutes to get to the marina so he could meet us. We were blown away at this obvious display of a true friend and advocate on the waters of the loop. Later we would learn that he was actually 10 minutes from home when he drove the 90 minutes to greet us knowing he would be driving another 90 minutes to get back home afterwards!
All the time he spent on board with us discussing cruising strategies, sights to see, and marinas to plan on using, we never felt rushed by Foster....Then to top it all off, about two hours after Foster left us, we got an email from him that he copied us on that he sent to Dave Skolnick and Doug Smith telling them both that we were moving south and to expect calls from us that we were looking for help in Annapolis (Dave) and Solomons Island (Doug). Again surprising us on the accommodation and helpfulness. Then to complete the first class service, Foster touched base with me in the morning to make sure we were being taken care of on the pump out dock since he had called the dock master to set up a pump out prior to our departure. He really goes out of his way to make the voyage easier for loopers by using his experience(s) to predict issues that will come up for loopers and filling in the blanks for us to alleviate potential snags."