Dixie Lakes District

The Dixie Lakes District encompasses several fleets in the South that are not on the Atlantic or Gulf Coasts, and span Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina.

In Georgia we have Lake Lanier in Atlanta. In Tennessee we have Privateer Yacht Club in Hixson. In South Carolina we have Western Carolina Sail Club in Anderson and Keowee Sailing Club in Seneca. In Alabama we have North Central Alabama in Birmingham, Mussel Shoals Sailing Club in Lauderdale and Brown's Creek Sailing Association in Guntersville.

The District Governor is Rob Fowler.

2016 Great Scot Regatta at Birmingham Sailing Club, AL


Story by Barry Hambrick

The Great Scot is in the record books and what a weekend we had with the help of Hurricane Matthew! It all started Friday night with a cookout for all. Stan and Donna Graham cooked 40 hamburgers for our visitors from out of town along with our fleet members. The following morning, we had boats arriving from Michigan, Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia and Texas. 29 boats in all setting an all-time record of attendance. The biggest concern, however, was winds blowing around 25 plus! We had 18 boats attempt to race and were only able to get in one race due to the fact of the wind’s speed and shifts. A couple of boats encountered hardware problems and needed a tow and a few others had trouble remaining upright. Little did we know that this race would be the only one for the weekend due to Sunday’s conditions being worse than Saturday.

That did not stop the regatta! The Scot Fleet had a great party planned with a number of members handling various duties throughout the weekend. I can’t say “thank you” enough for everyone jumping in and taking care of what was needed and to be handled. Stan and Donna Graham, David and Beth Hardwick, Dave and Toni Hackney, Tim and Pam Pack, Richard and Billie Wade, Patrick and Denise Whatley, Marty and Charlie French, Doug and Kim Fox, our fleet captain Andrew Fox and my favorite fan club, Tracy and Emily Hambrick. We would also like to say a big thank you to Bob Blythe, PRO and the members who served on race committee this weekend. It was a difficult task and conditions were not easy! Thank you to those of you who sponsored the event with a generous monetary gift. We could not have hosted the event without your help. It was an over- the- top anniversary celebration.
Highlights from the evening….We had an awesome appetizers and dinner catered by our friends at Butts to Go. Wade Reich and his team do an outstanding job with food! Right before dinner, we held our annual Great Scot Raffle. There were so many prizes and it was a huge hit with everyone. Even if you didn’t win a prize at the raffle, no one went home empty handed. Every guest received a 40th Anniversary F/S etched mug filled with tea and tea cookies to carry out the Scottish tradition at our Great Scot Regatta. Once again this year, we had a wonderful DJ, George Buchann, who kept us dancing all evening as well as providing music for the Awards Ceremony. At his suggestion, we are proud to have paid tribute to our great nation by playing the Star Spangled Banner before the festivities got started. We also had a guest speaker, Mr. Sandy Lawton, who played an important role in getting the Scot Fleet started at The Birmingham Sailing Club some 40 years ago.

At our Awards Ceremony, we honored Harry Reich for his continuing support of our club and our fleet. We also paid tribute to Tim Pack and Dave Hackney as former Fleet Captains for reviving the fleet to where we are today, and thank them for their contributions. Richard Wade received an award as our District Champion, and Andrew Fox was recognized for winning the Challenger Fleet at Mid Winters. Patrick and Denise Whatley received the Harry Reich Sportsman Award, and on behalf of the Scot Fleet, Andrew Fox accepted the Fleet of the Year Award from our District Governor Rob Fowler.

Thanks to Denise Whatley, we have photos to share from the race on Saturday. If you would like to view them, please visit here.  They will be up for 180 days.

As you can see, we had a wonderful 2016 Great Scot Regatta. If you were not able to attend this year, we encourage you to please make plans to do so next October! We’d love to see you there.

Results are here.  



by Joe VerPlank

Memorial Day weekend at Muscle Shoals Sailing Club started out hot and sunny with a nice breeze that we all anticipated for the Saturday and Sunday races.  By the time we had finished the Skipper’s Meeting and lunch, the breeze was beginning to pick up to a nice Southeasterly.  Our flawless PRO, Gar Bouse, had set a perfect windward-leeward course two times around.  By the time we had our first start, the wind had puffed up to around twelve knots.  Then the skippers had to decide whether to take the route closer to shore where there is usually a lift or to go up the middle where there was more wind.  It didn’t seem to make much difference which route you took since we all met at the windward mark about the same time and we were all competitive.  Going downwind was a different story.  The shifty winds started taking its toll on the boats that were not quite as skilled on their spinnakers.  As we rounded the leeward mark, the boats that could douse their chutes the best and trim windward surged further ahead.  There were puffs at eighteen to twenty as the wind built higher.  Some boats were going into survival mode but fortunately, no one went over.  The wind stayed up the duration of our three races on Saturday.

2016 Grits 'n Haggis - Dixie Lakes District Regatta, Keowee Sailing Club, Seneca SC

2016GH1  2016GH2

by Sandy Eustis, FS5610

A record 25 Flying Scots showed up at the Keowee Sailing Club in Seneca, South Carolina for the 2016 Grits 'n Haggis Regatta.  The event, held on May 21-22, also served as the 2016 Dixie Lakes District Championship Regatta.  Only 2 races were held on Saturday, due to the effects of a violent squall after the end of the second race.  PRO Jake Kohl had wisely shortened that race and sent the fleet scurrying for cover from a fast approaching squall which had unexpectedly turned more than 90 degrees to the right and headed due south to our venue after passing well to the north and west of Lake Keowee earlier in the afternoon.  Most of the competitors were well aware of what transpired at the ACCs last year when a monster squall hit the racing fleet, so almost everyone at Lake Keowee was wearing life jackets, and several skippers had wisely turned into the approaching storm, taken down their sails, raised their centerboards, and they remained upright when the squall hit.  With about 10 boats already at the dock, and with most of the mid-pack group almost home, the southbound freight train met the 15mph breeze moving northward right off the end of the KSC docks.   8 boats were almost instantly capsized, 4 of which turned turtle, and another remained upright but lost her mast, all within about 10-15 seconds.  At least 2 Scots had crew members on their fore decks with docking lines in hand when they were suddenly capsized. 

Chattanooga Choo Choo a Real Hoot

The fleet! gorgeous, right? The orange spinnaker belongs to Rob Fowler's new boat photo: Jim Davis

Well, Chattanooga sure was a blast again this year! 

With 29 boats, about double the typical turnout, it was as if all the stars aligned: Birmingham Sailing Club, one of the largest southern fleets outside of Florida, decided to start traveling and three or four boats came from there; Lynn and Bill Bruss from Chattanooga spent the winter racing in Florida, and so Mark and Michelle Taylor returned the favor, traveling up from Tampa for the weekend; Lake Keowee sent three boats; and the Midwest District continued to support the event with five boats from Madison, Carlyle and Clinton.  

2015 Scot-A-Hootchee - Lake Lanier Sailing Club, GA


Fleet #111 hosted the 2015 Scot a Hoochee Regatta on Lake Lanier in Flowery Branch, GA.  A drizzly rain came and went, but the wind stayed for both days, ranging from 10 to 20.  5 races were sailed on Saturday and 1 on Sunday.  The competition was close for the top spot, with Tony Milligan winning the regatta with a bullet in the last race.

One of the highlights was the trophies, handmade tote bags from an old main sail, made by one of our fleet member’s wife Indu Kowalski, pictured above with the Scot fleet.  Full Results are here,

Regatta Results