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SSCA returns to Melbourne, Florida for the SSCA Annual GAM

by Seven Seas Cruising Association 11 Sep 11:27 PDT November 10-12, 2023
Seven Seas Cruising Association © Seven Seas Cruising Association

Join us! For three days in November, Seven Seas Cruising Association members unite for seminars, information sessions as well as gatherings in Florida.

For 2023, SSCA returns to Melbourne, Florida for the SSCA Annual GAM, November 10-12, 2023 at the Front Street Civic Center. The Convention Hotel is Hotel Melby (Melbourne) for those needing land-based lodgings near the venue.

As a reminder, the Florida GAM has been moved to Melbourne this year, as members have asked for a more southerly location, in part, for better weather, but also due to the need for a nearby anchorage. As a nod to past GAMs/Conferences, the First Street Civic Center, Melbourne, FL, will be the location for our event. Anchorages are nearby, and we have been told the Front Street dinghy dock will be available for dinghy tie up, the picnic area is open all times for members to use. If you are at the Eau Gallie anchorage, the dingy dock is available. For those not familiar with this venue, Waterway Guide's Skipper Bob Anchorages Along the Intracoastal Waterway, offers the following, for Melbourne:Mile 918.2, N 28 05.237 W

080 35.315 "Anchor in protection of causeway either north or south of the causeway bridge."

Saturday night, November 11, the Keynote Presentation will be given by cruiser Commodores Sherry and Dave McCampbell who have contributed to our Bulletins and Cruisers' Workshop with their articles on overseas destination cruising, and technical subjects. The Dinner Keynote will include a collage of slides from their seven-year voyage from Florida to the Philippines. During the other three days, attend their seminar on 'Using Satellite Imagery with OpenCPN'. Due to the hard work of a lot of Pacific and Caribbean cruisers as well as the OpenCPN development team, you can now find charts and route information and also access/download the most recent marine charts for the USA. Dave McCampbell, the Editor of SSCA's Cruising Workshop, supported by Sherry will share their installation process and lessons learned, in: 'Are Lithium Batteries for You?'

Other cruising seminars will include speakers on various marine topics and round table/'hands-on' sessions. Some of the seminars are listed below:

Commodores Rudy and Jill Sechez, authors of the book 'ANCHORING-A Ground Tackler's Apprentice', will be presenting on anchoring, along with a 'hands on' session.

Chris Parker, of the Marine Weather Center, will share his thoughts on the upcoming cruising weather, especially important, due to the changes we are seeing with the return of El Nino.

Scott Berg will cover energy systems as well as an in-depth review of boat surveys. Note that energy is a very important topic with the changes in systems occurring in technology and insurance. During an Energy Troubleshooting seminar, the panelists will include not only Scott, but also Commodore Frank Smith, and others to talk through key aspects of your energy systems.

Commodores Deb and John Rapp, just returning from their Arctic Expedition (sailing Norway to Greenland to Iceland) will share their experiences during their adventures transiting east to west during August 2023- a fascinating look at far north sailing.

Ideas for Cooking and Provisioning will be presented by Deb Rapp, and Provisioning While Circumnavigating will be presented by Anne Posner based on their around the world voyages and time in the shops of France. "Hands on" will include provisioning topics as well as what to do with those new-to-some "ground provisions" -many thanks to Deb Rapp and Anne Posner.

"The Bahamas, Where to Go 2023/24", local Bahamas information and what/where to go will be presented by Commodore Addison Chan, with his current experiences, travels to Bahamas and Cuba, he will be an excellent resource. In addition, Cruising Station Hosts, the Bahama's Lorraine Rolle and Trinidad and Tobago's Jesse James, hope to provide presentations on their respective areas, covering arrival, where to go, and what to do for the 2023/24 season. Sunday, learn about the Thornless Path, from the Eastern US, along the Bahamas, to the northern ports of the Dominican Republic and onto the Eastern Caribbean, presented by Commodore Joan Conover.

Happy Hour Friday: Nov. 10, after a full day of seminars, we plan a no-host happy hour and Meet-and-Greet, so come and join us and share with others; Commodores Donna (Lange) and Bob Philburn and will be greeters. As an option you can "brown bag" your event meals, however, we are keeping prices down and quality up for our event menu.

The Melbourne volunteers include Jeff and Anne Posner, who provided wonderful support as SSCA reviewed the area and venue to plan the event. Bill Goebel, known from his efforts for the St. Augustine GAM of the past several years, will be coordinating volunteers.

Event Registration opens the second week of September, 2023 at Anne and Jeff Posner, SSCA Commodores, are our local Melbourne, FL hosts for the GAM. If you would like additional details or wish to be a speaker, or suggest a topic, please send an email (cc to ) to . Similar to previous years, the outgoing SSCA President will lead the Annual Florida GAM efforts. The new venue also offers an excellent meal menu which you can register for as you register for the event. If desired, members can always "Brown Bag" their meals. Thursday, November 9th is set up starting at 6 PM; if you would like to help contact Nicole at .

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