Monday, December 20, 2010

United States Power Squadrons hires new National Programs Director

Former California Department of Boating and Waterways Director Raynor Tsuneyoshi has accepted the newly created position of National Programs Director for the United States Power Squadrons.

Tsuneyoshi, who served nine years as Cal Boating director, accepted this new position effective 1 Jan. 2011. The announcement was made during the Board of Directors meeting on 11 Dec. 2010, at USPS national headquarters in Raleigh, N.C.

In his new position, Tsuneyoshi will lead the partnering effort in USPS outreach programs to enhance the education, safety and enjoyment of boating for the recreational boating community.

Tsuneyoshi said, “I am extremely excited about the prospects of helping the Power Squadrons continue to be the leader in boating safety education.”

The United States Power Squadrons is the nation’s largest nonprofit recreational boating organization with a presence in all 50 states plus the territories of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands as well as Japan. There are more than 40,000 members in 400 squadrons and 33 districts worldwide.

Tsuneyoshi will search for opportunities that help the USPS live up to its motto: Boating is fun … we’ll show you how.®

Friday, November 05, 2010

USPS Members Receive Discounts on C-MAP by Jeppesen Electronic Charts and Accessories

In its ongoing effort to enhance navigational safety and provide its members with the most up-to-date navigational tools, the United States Power Squadrons is now offering C-MAP by Jeppesen electronic charts and accessories at the USPS Ship's Store.

USPS recently signed a memorandum of understanding with navigation expert Jeppesen, a Boeing Company, to improve navigational safety. USPS members with a current certificate number can receive a 10 percent discount on electronic charts and accessories purchased at the USPS Ship’s Store website.

Available products include MAX electronic charts, a popular electronic charting platform whose features include Guardian Alarm anti-grounding technology, Flashing NavAids, Dynamic Currents, detailed C-Marina charts and more. Jeppesen’s full catalog of updated NT+ electronic charts are also available for boaters with chart plotters predating the introduction of MAX charts. Fishing contour charts are also available, as well as Jeppesen’s popular PC-Planner home planning software. This useful tool allows boaters to plan safe and efficient voyages on their home PC or laptop, saving time, fuel and money. When used with the C-MAP memory card, PC-Planner also makes it easy for boaters to back up important waypoints, clean up and organize waypoint data in their onboard chart plotters.

Jeppesen provides boaters with the most current electronic charts available, updating its entire C-MAP by Jeppesen chart library at least twice a year. A typical title receives thousands of changes from one edition to the next, including Coast Guard Notice-to-Mariner corrections, moved or changed aids to navigation, new hazards and obstacles, and more.

Club Jeppesen
For those members who already own a MAX or NT+ cartridge, getting these updates has now become easier and more affordable via Club Jeppesen. USPS members will receive a special price of $79 for a one-year Club Jeppesen subscription. Subscriptions must be ordered directly through Jeppesen.

For more information, contact C-Map by Jeppesen at 800-424-2627 or visit the USPS Ship’s Store.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Brunswick Boat Group Partners with United States Power Squadrons to Promote Boater Education and Safety

LAKE FOREST, Ill., Oct. 12, 2010 – Brunswick Corporation (NYSE: BC), the world’s largest marine manufacturer, has partnered with the United States Power Squadrons (USPS) to conduct boater education through participating Brunswick boat brand dealerships across the United States. USPS is the largest not-for-profit boating organization in the United States, with more than 45,000 members dedicated to making boating safer and more enjoyable by conducting courses in seamanship, navigation and more.

“As industry leaders, we seized this opportunity to positively impact boating enjoyment,” said Brunswick Boat Group President Andy Graves. “By giving our customers easy access to education by seasoned boaters, we hope to improve the ownership experience and potentially enhance boating safety.”

Classes and seminars range from beginner to expert levels covering a wide variety of topics including navigation, “Rules of the Road,” knot tying, electronics, trailering, and more. Qualified Power Squadrons personnel conduct the courses using facilities provided by participating Brunswick dealers.

“We are delighted that the Brunswick Boat Group embraces the importance of educating boaters before they take to the water,” said Frank A. Dvorak, USPS’s chief commander. “This will improve the boating experience by helping boaters be safer on the water as well as avoid costly tickets or embarrassing mistakes. The more competent the boater, the better time they will have on the water. Brunswick understands that.”

Many states require some form of boater certification prior to operation of an engine-powered vessel. The USPS program exceeds the course requirements in every state and satisfies those obligations. Additionally, many insurance companies will discount boat insurance rates upon proof of completion of a USPS course.

“Additional programs offered include content for our more experienced boaters, including the nuances of the more complex electrical systems of cruisers and even a comprehensive course about weather,” said Graves. “For boaters who can’t make it into the dealership for the courses, participating dealers also have access to take-home guides and course material.” Graves said a pilot program already is underway with a number of Brunswick Boat Group dealerships participating.

“Because several of our brands are a popular choice for first-time boat owners, this partnership is extremely beneficial,” said Graves. “Unfortunately, one bad experience may turn people off of boating. We want to use every tool at our disposal to ensure that our customers are comfortable and competent at the helm so that they experience maximum enjoyment from their boats every time they take to the water.”

Brunswick boat brands slated to roll out the USPS program through dealerships in the U.S. include Bayliner, Boston Whaler, Cabo Yachts, Crestliner, Cypress Cay, Harris FloteBote, Hatteras Yachts, Lowe, Lund, Meridian Yachts, Princecraft, Sea Ray, and Trophy.

About Brunswick
Headquartered in Lake Forest, Ill., Brunswick Corporation endeavors to instill "Genuine Ingenuity"(TM) in all its leading consumer brands, including Mercury and Mariner outboard engines; Mercury MerCruiser sterndrives and inboard engines; MotorGuide trolling motors; Attwood marine parts and accessories; Land 'N' Sea, Kellogg Marine, and Diversified Marine parts and accessories distributors; Arvor, Bayliner, Boston Whaler, Cabo Yachts, Crestliner, Cypress Cay, Harris FloteBote, Hatteras, Lowe, Lund, Meridian, Princecraft, Quicksilver, Rayglass, Sea Ray, Sealine, Suncruiser, Triton Aluminum, Trophy, Uttern and Valiant boats; Life Fitness and Hammer Strength fitness equipment; Brunswick bowling centers, equipment and consumer products; Brunswick billiards tables and foosball tables. For more information, visit

Friday, September 10, 2010

New Discounts for the Boat Operator Certification!

BELLEVUE, WA, SEPTEMBER 4, 2010: The USPS Boat Insurance Program and Travelers Insurance are excited to announce additional discounts exclusively for USPS members. USPS Boat Insurance/Travelers customers who complete the various levels of the Boat Operator Certification (BOC) Program will now qualify for the following insurance premium discounts:

• Inland Navigator – 2.5%
• Coastal Navigator – 2.5%
• Advanced Coastal Navigator – 5%
• Offshore Navigator – 5%

These discounts are in addition to the 23% credit available for completion of USPS Safety Courses and annual Vessel Safety Check, bringing the total available credit to 38%. The BOC program certifies USPS members in recreational boating proficiency at a level that meets or exceeds the requirements of UN Resolution 40, International Certificate for the Operation of Pleasure Craft. Travelers and the USPS Boat Insurance are happy to recognize and reward the exceptional knowledge and experience of USPS members that obtain these certifications.

For additional information on the USPS Boat Insurance Program, and to advise of BOC course completion, please visit or call 1-800-763-USPS (8777).

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation and the Boy Scouts of America Sign Memorandum of Mutual Support

The Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) and the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) today announced that the two organizations have signed a Memorandum of Mutual Support, agreeing to work collaboratively on initiatives that support one another’s mission. RBFF and BSA will work to extend the reach of both organizations into new and existing markets, helping young men and women grow in character, citizenship responsibility and leadership through a deeper appreciation for outdoor sports and activities.

This year marks BSA’s 100th anniversary and at the center of the celebration is the 2010 National Scout Jamboree taking place now through August 4, 2010, at Fort A.P. Hill, Va. RBFF is offering Scout leaders a chance to win fishing gear for their troop when they enter the Take Me Fishing sweepstakes at the Boys’ Life booth. The jamboree, which is held every four years, will host more than 40,000 Scouts and Scouters.

“We are thrilled to announce this agreement that will foster ways to introduce more youth to the fun and excitement of boating and fishing,” said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson. “We want to inspire newcomers to get active and develop leadership qualities to ultimately protect the legacy of the sport and the future of our nation’s waterways.”

According to the Special Report on Fishing and Boating, conducted by RBFF and the Outdoor Foundation, fishing is the most popular gateway activity that often leads to participation in other outdoor pursuits. The report also found that youth participants aged six to 12 are driven by a desire for fun (78.6 percent) and an interest in exploring the natural world (50.9 percent). Past research shows that 90 percent of adult outdoor enthusiasts were introduced to nature-based activities between the ages of five and 18.

RBFF launched a Scouting Patch Program in December 2009. Three new boating and fishing patches, available to Cub Scouts and Scouts, promote the merits of the sport and encourage scouts to plan and organize fishing trips using the resources found at Since the program’s inception, more than 12,600 patch requests have been fulfilled.

“Our organization works with many groups that encourage young people to learn skills and activities that can foster a love of the outdoors,” said retired BSA Community Alliances Team Director Charles Holmes. “Through this MOU, Scouts can learn the skills needed to safely pursue their interest in fishing and boating.”

About the Boy Scouts of America
The Boy Scouts of America is the nation’s foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training. The Scouting organization is composed of 2.7 million youth members between the ages of 7 and 20, 1.1 million volunteers, and nearly 300 local councils throughout the United States and its territories. For more information on the Boy Scouts of America, please visit More information about 100 Years of Scouting can be found at

About RBFF
RBFF is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to increase participation in recreational angling and boating, thereby protecting and restoring the nation’s aquatic natural resources. RBFF helps people discover, share and protect the legacy of boating and fishing through national outreach programs including the Take Me Fishing™ campaign and Anglers’ Legacy™.

Monday, July 26, 2010

EPA Requests Feedback on Performance Standards on Marine Sanitation Devices

As discussed by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials at the American Boating Congress this past May, the agency is now calling for comments on marine sanitation devices (MSDs). Specifically, EPA seeks input regarding vessels operating on navigable waters that use sewage treatment devices; technical information on the performance, effectiveness and costs of vessel sewage treatment devices, including performance testing data; suggestions on what, if any, changes to the performance standards might be appropriate; and information on monitoring, record keeping and reporting or vessel sewage discharges. To join NMMA’s task force on MSDs or provide input on NMMA’s pending comments, contact Cindy Squires at; 202-737-9766. Read more about the rulemaking here.


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Jeppesen and United States Power Squadrons Announce Partnership

Navigation Expert and Non-Profit Boating Education Organization Work Together to Enhance and Promote Safety on the Water

Navigation expert Jeppesen and nationwide non-profit boating organization United States Power Squadrons (USPS) today announced a strategic partnership designed to further marine education and promote safe boating practices.

Jeppesen and USPS formalized this cooperative effort by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Signed today by Jeppesen Senior Vice President/General Manager Greg Bowlin and Frank A. Dvorak SN, Chief Commander of USPS, this document details a variety of ways the two organizations will work together. With the assistance of Jeppesen, USPS will further its education of the boating public and its members in proper use of vector digital charts and related tools in navigating their boats.

“Our efforts and our goals parallel each other in many ways,” said Ken Cirillo, Marine Business Development Manager for Jeppesen, instrumental in developing the cooperative plan. “The more we spoke with each other, the clearer it became how together we could reach today’s modern boater with much-needed information on safe electronic navigation. This alliance has had an energizing effect on both parties, and we’re looking forward to unveiling some exciting cross promotional and educational initiatives in the future,” added Cirillo.

Under the partnership MOU, Jeppesen will provide demonstration and discounted products and services to USPS’ instructors and members including digital charts, software, and membership in Club Jeppesen Marine, a club that promotes the safety of updated navigational charts while providing a range of consumer benefits. Jeppesen will also work to promote the value and benefits of USPS membership to its customers and the general boating public.

“This partnership will play an important role in our efforts to increase understanding of overall navigational skills and electronic charting among our members and the general boating public,” said USPS’s Chief Commander Dvorak. “The prevalence of electronic navigation and the rapidly evolving digital charting technology demands increased focus in this area — along with a forward-thinking partner to help us inform and educate mariners,” he added.

For more information about this strategic alliance between Jeppesen and the USPS, or to stay abreast of future educational initiatives and activities, contact Ken Cirillo at or Bob Sweet, USPS National Educational Officer at

Sunday, May 02, 2010

BoatU.S. Guidelines for Recreational Boaters to Contend with Gulf Oil Spill

Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) recommends the following tips for recreational boaters: 

  • If your marina or boat club puts oil containment booms in place, do not attempt to cross the booms with your boat. This will only spread the oil and damage the booms or possibly your vessel's running gear.
  • If there is oil in your marina, refrain from running engines or other devices that have seawater intakes such as air conditioners or refrigerators.
  • Hauling out your boat will prevent damage, but as of press time it was not clear if these costs will be reimbursed by British Petroleum (BP).
  • If the spill is sighted coming toward your marina or already there, call the BP Community Information Hotline at 866-448-5816 to make a report.
  • If your boat comes in contact with the oil, call your insurance company to file a claim. Uninsured boaters can call the BP Hotline at 800-440-0858 to file a claim.
  • Damage to a BoatUS insured's vessel that is caused by the oil spill is covered. BoatUS members are directed to call 800-937-1937 to file a claim.

Photo credit top left - U.S. Coast Guard via Getty Images


Monday, February 15, 2010

The Ensign writer wins award

The survival tale of sailors attempting to rescue a stricken vessel set adrift during an icy Lake Superior storm won first place for The Ensign writer Marlin Bree in the Seamanship, Rescue & Safety category of the 2009 Boating Writers International Writing Contest.

Winners in 17 contest categories were announced at BWI’s Thursday, 12 Feb., meeting during the Miami Boat Show. The professional writers’ association contest recognizes excellence in boating journalism.

Bree’s story, The Last Battle of the Grampa Woo, appeared in The Ensign’s May/Jun 2009 issue. The Woo, a well-known diesel-powered aluminum excursion boat, operated on Lake Superior’s North Shore.

Bree’s nonfiction tale captures the unfolding drama as the Grampa Woo is blown off its harbor mooring in Grand Portage, Minn., and set adrift on Superior’s storm-battered seas. Two other boats brave ice, snow, high waves and wild winds trying to rescue the vessel.

In presenting the BWI award to Bree, Judge Jennifer Chesak said the article “was written with true zeal and captured the intense passion a man has for his ship as well as the incredible bravery and heroism abundant on this rescue mission at sea.”

Along with the other winning entries, Bree’s article moves on to Phase II, competing for BWI’s Grand Prize Writer’s Award, which carries a four-figure cash prize and will be announced later this year. Bree is the only BWI writer to have previously won two Grand Prize Writer’s Awards, both for articles published in The Ensign magazine.

Marlin Bree lives with his family in Shoreview, Minn., and often solo-sails his boat, Persistence, on Lake Superior. He is the author of numerous books including Wake of the Green Storm: A Survivor’s Tale, In the Teeth of the Northeaster: A Solo Voyage on Lake Superior and Broken Seas: True Tales of Extraordinary Seafaring Adventures. For more information, visit

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Managing the Waterway DVD promotion runs through 28 Feb.

To celebrate the fifth anniversary of their Managing the Waterway electronic charting DVDs, the MTW series creators are running an online promotion through 28 Feb.: When you purchase the 2010 DVD set from their website, you'll also receive a free copy of their 232-page reference book Get Onboard With E-charting, which normally sells for $34.95.

The two-DVD set, which costs $39.95, contains complete, updated sets of NOAA charts (both raster and vector) and USACE inland waterway charts, free and trial charting software, and a comprehensive nautical reference library.

You can find more information and purchase the DVDs at