Promoting Community Boat Building,
Rowing &
Sailing on the Heritage
Coast of Michigan

We are an approved federal and state non profit "501(c)3"organization.

Heritage-23 rowing skiff design

For Information Contact

David Wentworth

Leo Chartier
989 460-2642

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Heritage Coast Sailing and Rowing Incorporated
(a Michigan Non-profit Corporation)

Mail the completed form, waiver(s) and appropriate payment to

Heritage Coast Sailing and Rowing, Inc
Post Office Box 221
Tawas City, Michigan 48764-0221

The 2013 Policies and Safety Rules do not have a signature requirement.  Reading of these rules is acknowledged in the Membership Application.

2015 Policies and Safety Rules
Download a copy of the Policies and Safety Rules in Adobe pdf format
Return to the Join Heritage or the Building Program pages

1.         Organization:  Heritage Coast Sailing and Rowing Incorporated (H C S & R) is a Michigan not-for-profited corporation:

1.1       Purpose: The purpose of Heritage Coast Sailing and Rowing, Inc. is to, on a community basis:

1.1 a:  facilitate community based boat building and the encourage the development of the skills associated with it

1.1 b:  encourage rowing, competitive rowing, sailing and competitive sailing

1.1 c:   encourage use of our water resource by organizing regattas and other water based events

1.1 e:  preserve historic regional boat designs

1.1 f:   focus attention on the maritime history of our region 

1.2       Methodology: Goals will be accomplished by:

1.2 a:  converting historic regional designs to modern boat building techniques, kit boat building techniques, and volunteer boatbuilder capabilities

1.2 b:  receiving and restoring, by volunteer boatbuilders, donated boats for revenue and/or use

1.2 c:   building and/or restoring boats, to minimize capital requirements, utilizing volunteer workers, for use by community members

1.2 d:  raising funds for capital requirement and operating expenses by operating a “ship’s store”, by conducting fund-raising drives, and by conducting events, classes and regattas.

1.2 e:  using the Heritage-23 as the one design boat chosen as the primary build-row-sail boat of H C S & R

1.2 f:   covering direct expenses associated with the community sailing and rowing portion of the program with membership fees and other direct revenues

1.2 g:  development of programs for pleasure, fitness and competitive rowing and sailing 

1.3       Implications for members: 

1.3 a: members are hereby made aware that the vessels in use by H C S & R are built from kits by dedicated volunteers of varying skills and experience

1.3 b:  In the case of donated boats, members are hereby aware made that these vessels are used and have been restored by dedicated volunteers of varying skill levels.

1.3 c:   In both instances, there may be additional risk associated equipment use, and such underlying and additional risk is hereby recognized by members and equipment use indicates acceptance of risk by using members.

2.         General

2.1       H C S & R assumes no responsibility, either expressed or implied, for the personal safety or welfare of any person. These rules are made to teach and help members and their guests in being responsible for their own safety. Members are responsible to correctly assess their ability and the boat’s ability to sail/row safely under the existing weather, Lake, Bay and traffic conditions any time they go out on water.

2.2       These rules establish a minimum safety standard.

2.3       Safe practices are essential for all rowers and sailors.  The policies and rules outlined below are designed for member safety and should be followed. 

2.4       All members are required to follow these rules and are expected to make an effort to promote safe and responsible rowing and sailing.

2.5       Coaches and/or any H C S & R board member will each have the authority to independently make a binding “DO NOT ROW, DO NOT SAIL” determination at anytime.

3.         Release of Liability (Waiver)

             3.1       A release of liability form (waiver) must be signed each year and be on file with H C S & R.  No one can operate, use or ride on/in H C S & R equipment without having completed and submitted the required waiver.

3.2       Rowers and sailors under 18 must have a parent/guardian signature on the Liability Release Form each year and it must be on file with H C S & R. 

3.3       Waiver forms are available with Membership Applications and on line.

3.4       Equipment use is restricted to members in good standing and guests under the supervision of a coach or experienced H C S & R member.  All guests must sign the H C S & R Release of Liability form (waiver)before using H C S & R equipment.

3.5       Members who allow guests to use the equipment without an executed waiver from the guest accept as their own all risk associated with such use and will hold the Corporation harmless of any resulting claims.

 4.         Equipment Use

 4.1       Prerequisites.

4.1 a:  Prior to rowing, each coxswain, skipper, sailor and/or rower must:

                                    4.1 a 1. Inspect boat prior to departure.

4.1 a 2  Insure that USCG required equipment and H C S & R      

              required equipment is onboard and is operational before      

              departing the dock.( See Equipment List at dock.)

4.1 a 3  verify that all equipment users are authorized

4.1 a 4  Four rowers and a coxswain are required to row the  

             Heritage 23.  A crew of at least three is required to sail it.

4.1 b:  New rowers should view the US Rowing safety video, experienced rowers should review it as needed. New sailors should review the US Sail video and must be endorsed by the Sailing Boatswain

4.1 c:   H C S & R policy is that all rowers/sailors must be able to swim.  Passing a swim test (youth) or verify swimming proficiency (adults) is required.  If proficiency isn’t shown, the rower/sailor must wear an approved PFD at all times while on the water. The swim test is defined as swimming 100 yards in a bathing suit, or 50 yards lightly clothed in addition the test also includes treading water for 5 minutes. Youth participants are defined as those under 18 years old.

4.2       Use of equipment is open to members in good standing only and to supervised guests.

4.3       Members must have successfully taken a course in rowing and/or sailing or have demonstrated adequate knowledge of sailing and/or rowing to the membership Boatswain.  Sailing and rowing require different competencies.  Equipment use is restricted to areas of competence.

4.4       Members should report damaged equipment to a coach or Board of Directors as soon as possible.  Members have the authority to temporarily take a boat out of service.

4.5       Members are responsible for repairing damaged equipment when the damage is caused by not following 2013 Policies and Safety Rules Policies or Safety Rules. They must then work in a timely manner with the board, financially or otherwise, to return the damaged equipment to service.

4.6       After Equipment Use:  Members are responsible for cleaning and stowing of all equipment used and that the vessel is properly secured at the dock.

4.7       Equipment keys will be issued annually to members in good standing.  Duplication of keys is forbidden. A $5 fee will be charged for replacement keys.

4.8       Guests are allowed to use H C S & R equipment only when supervised by coach or other  experienced H C S & R member. Approved guests must sign a “Release of Liability” (waiver) form prior to using equipment.

4.9       The board may authorize groups to use equipment for special events.

5.         Log Book Procedure.

            5.1       Prior to going out:  the following must be logged: Name of each crew member, Boat, Time Out, Expected Return, Area of sail/row.

5.2       After returning, complete the log by entering “Return Time”, and complete the “Comments” section, especially if there was any incident or accident.

5.3       Logbook is kept in the equipment box.

 6.         Sensitivity to Weather Conditions.

6.1       The Heritage-23 and Penobscot-14 are considered a small open boat and USCG rules and recommendations with regard to Small Craft and Small Craft Warnings should be followed.

6.2       Check the weather forecast each time prior to departing to make sure severe weather is not likely.

6.3       Do not row/sail when thunderstorms or other high wind/rain conditions are forecast. 

6.4       High winds and/or waves can be dangerous and cause problems with boat control, or might swamp the boat. Do not row/sail if winds are approximately 20 mph or higher, even winds under 20 mph can be hazardous depending its direction. Do not assume that conditions are safe if the wind conditions while leaving the dock are less than 20 mph; use good judgment on wind conditions and possible worsening conditions throughout the rowing/sailing period.

6.5       Never launch a boat when there is a possibility of lightning or you hear thunder. Rowers/sailors must wait 30 minutes after thunder and lightning completely stops before launching a boat.

6.6       Do not row/sail in fog.

6.7       In early spring/late fall, even when the temperatures are above freezing, frost/ice may be present on the ramp and dock, making them treacherous. The H C S & R policy is that no rowing/sailing is allowed if the water temperature is below 55 degrees. Additionally, do not row if the additive values for the air and water temperatures are less than 100.

6.8       It is suggested that rowers/sailors should wear protective clothing appropriate for the conditions and their activity. Use sun block with a high SPF factor. Drink plenty of water before, during and after exposure to hot weather. Address any symptoms of heat stress immediately.

7.         General Rules of the Bay

7.1       The East Tawas State Dock and surrounding area is frequently busy and crowded.  Care should be taken to avoid other boat traffic.  The corner at the end of the pier is a blind corner needing extra caution.

7.2       LOOK AROUND frequently, at least every 10 strokes, if in a boat without a coxswain, or if you are the cox. Sailors should maintain awareness of their surrounding area.

7.3       KEEP YOUR EARS OPEN. If you hear someone shouting, it could mean something is wrong. Be prepared to stop and proceed with caution. Be familiar with how to perform sudden emergency stops.

7.4       Know the “rules of the Road”.

7.5       When encountering a “blind” rowing boat, the coxed boat must hail the other vessel loud enough to be heard. Rowers should notify the cox when it is apparent that he/she has not seen a boat or hazard.

7.6       Observe the international “right-side of the road” rule when navigating. When approaching other boats, move to the starboard side when practical to allow the boats to pass port side to port side.

7.7       Boat use is restricted to the area outlined on the chart posted at the mooring.  In no case out of the area north of a line from the Tawas Point Lighthouse to the Tawas City Water Tower.

8.         Low Light Rowing. During morning and evening twilight conditions, the following rules must be observed.

8.1       Boats must be at the dock at or before sunset and before sunrise.

8.2       Clothing: Each sailor/rower, cox and coach must wear a bright colored clothes that will improve the ability of others to see the person(s) rowing. Avoid colors that would blend into the shoreline and camouflage the crew.

8.3       If caught out after dark, utilize the flashlight located in the boat equipment box.

9.         Coach Requirements. H C S & R will develop a Rowing Coaching plan for the 2013 season and a Sailing Coaching Plan for the 2014 Season.  In 2013, individual members who hold US SAIL certification (Basic Keelboat as a minimum) and have been interviewed and/or tested by the Heritage 23 Boatswain may use the Heritage 23 design for sailing. 

10.       Support Boats.

10.1    The Board of Directors may determine when a support boat is required.

11.       Penalties and Enforcement.

11.1    Penalties are based on the severity of the violation and the number of violations committed.

11.2    Penalty levels include: remedial/refresher safety training, suspension of rowing/sailing privileges for a specified period, suspension of all H C S & R privileges for a specified period, termination of membership and permanent loss of privileges to access H C S & R equipment.

11.3    A violation of these safety rules is a serious infraction.

12.       Memberships

12.1    Memberships are annual and run from February 1 to January 31 each year.

12.2    Membership fees are determined by cost and use factors.

12.3    Membership fees are determined by the Board of Directors.

12.4    Membership is the vehicle used to provide insurance coverage for the equipment used by H C S & R

12.5    Annual Membership Fees: See membership application

13.       Competitions and regattas

13.1    [RESERVED]

For questions or comments on the Heritage Coast Sailing and Rowing Inc web site, please contact the webmaster.

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