Twenty nine summers ago, 20 sailing boats embarked on a routine club race.
Then fog appeared.
Only four boats found home.
Thus began the Moe Fraser Regatta, (officially, the "Moe Fraser Memorial Long Distance Race"). No fog planned, but marks are beyond your horizon; a trial of distance, a test of navigation.
Just the boat, a chart, and compass. And you.
NOTICE OF RACE
Saturday, September 22, 2018
Mississauga Sailing Club
120 Lakefront Promenade, Mississauga, ON
MSC is located on Lake Ontario, Lakefront Promenade, is south off Lakeshore Road between Dixie and Cawthra.
Any craft powered by sail
You must have on board a marine capable compass. The marks are two miles distant, and GPS navigation crutches are banished from your boat.
CCG approved life jackets/PFDs must be worn at all times, and all boats must comply with Transport Canada safety equipment requirements.
Dinner for racers is included in the entrance fee. Guest tickets can be purchased for $15 per person. We will try, but cannot guarantee to deliver advertised
meal to last minute registrations.
Prizes will be awarded to the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd for each class.
Every year, at the Moe Fraser Long Distance Race, newer club members ask "who was Moe Fraser?". Moe was one of the four founding members of the Mississauga Sailing Association - the forerunner of the Mississauga Sailing Club. He was Commodore of the MSA twice & was continually involved in all operations of the club. He also taught occasional sailing seminars when asked by the club. Moe was born on July 2, 1921 and was raised in the Hamilton-Grimsby area. Before World War II, he apprenticed with the Imperial Bank of Commerce, where he once found himself locked inside the bank with a would-be robber.
After taking his first flight in a small airplane, he fell in love with flying. During the Second World War, he was initially assigned to be a fighter pilot in the Aleutians. At the last minute this was changed and he was assigned as an instructor training Air Force pilots at flying schools in southern Ontario and so remained in Canada. Sharing knowledge and skills with others was to become a theme in his life. He figured the Air Force owed him several trips across the country because, unlike many of his friends, he never got to travel out of the province, much less overseas. After the War he returned to work in various businesses. There were simply too many pilots and not enough flying jobs. His first love remained flying though, and he flew with the St. Catharine's Flying Club and the Air Force Reserve. Eventually he was able to secure a flying job and, for the rest of his career, Moe made his living as a Commercial Pilot. This was not without risk as one of his early jobs involved flying construction materials, including dynamite, into Northern Ontario as part of the construction of the TransCanada Highway. Later work involved flying corporate aircraft for companies such as INCO. He was married to Corinne (Corky) and they had four children - Mary, Susan, Elizabeth and Cameron.
Somewhere along the way, his curiosity was piqued about sailing. I think he was intrigued by the subtleties of a sail, which works the same way as the wing of an airplane, except that it's almost infinitely adjustable. He went to the Boat Show every year and bought books on sailing. While waiting at the airport for clients, Moe would read sailing books and thereby taught himself how to sail. After visiting the boat show for years to "kick the tires", Cameron said one year while he was busy looking at a boat across the aisle he turned around to see his Dad writing a cheque for a CL16. Cameron asked, "does Mom know about this". "Sure she does", he reassured Cameron as he completed the purchase of his new boat. He installed it on a trailer in the backyard on the trailer while he worked out all the details of rigging and operation. After a few weeks of familiarizing himself with everything on the boat, Moe took Cameron along and they headed for Marie Curtis Park.
The boat was launched for the first time in a howling wind with chop on the water – Moe sailed for the first time. Cameron, a non-swimmer (and non-sailor at the time), was his crew. Moe started launching his boat at the Port Credit ramp on the west side of the Credit River where he met and talked with other sailors. From these discussions, Moe and three others approached the City of Mississauga about establishing a sailing club to be associated with the City's Parks & Recreation. In 1972, they arranged our first site next to the generating station where the fishermen are today. As the current park was developed and landfilled, the MSA site moved a bit further west until we arrived at our present location. We became the MSC when we had to incorporate in order to lease land from the City of Mississauga for our clubhouse and compound. As a member of the Long Range Planning Committee, which oversaw negotiations with the City, Moe was instrumental in all discussions and meetings.
Moe was an intelligent, quiet & friendly man with a slightly mischievous grin just before he would make a comment. My boat had a gouge in it after a slight altercation with another boat on a training course run by Moe after a sail past. When Herb and I came down the next evening to fix the gelcoat, we met Moe leaving the site. We rolled down our car windows to chat. He asked if we were there to fix my boat. Upon answering yes, he said "don't bother it's already done". He had come down to fix his own boat and did mine at the same time. That was typical Moe. Moe had always wanted a keel boat and eventually acquired his Hinterholler 28 named "Piece of a Dream". Moe made himself and his boat available as the committee boat when MSC ran regattas.
A few years ago the Club decided to run a long distance race near the end of the sailing season for all classes of boats, as some MSC members also had keel boats in addition to their dinghies. In 1988, Moe Fraser won his race for his size and class of boat. He returned his boat to the Port Credit Marina and was driving to the "Char Pit" restaurant with another club member as passenger. Before we had a clubhouse this was our local rendezvous after racing. Along the way to the restaurant Moe had a heart attack and died on Sunday Oct. 23, 1988, aged 67. He had spent the last two days of his life doing what he loved most - flying and sailing. He is sorely missed by his friends and the MSC as he was an integral part of our lives and our Club. It is a fitting memorial that the race has been named the "Moe Fraser Long Distance Race".
(Written by Beth Ruch with additional information supplied by Cameron Fraser.)
IT STARTS HERE
We're a member driven, self-help sailing club, dedicated to the enjoyment of sailing as a recreation, and advancement of the sport as a competitive activity. We're a club for real sailors: we only sail boats where if you make a mistake, you end up swimming. That said, in this regatta, if your boat is powered by sail – be it a kayak or a tall ship square rigger – we want you.
Whether your skills are primitive or advanced, you'll be at home in this regatta; the skill of our members spans the gamut from neophyte to world class competitor. It's a competition, but a friendly, cooperative, and fun one.
If you're bringing a boat from outside our club, our creature comforts include a modern spacious 2nd floor lounge overlooking our harbour, a kitchen, and wi-fi. Our ground floor has washrooms, changing areas, hot showers, and an equipped workshop. You'll start the day dry and end the day dry. On top is an airy canopied roof deck for you to relax at the end of the day, or for any non-sailors who might accompany you, a comfortable place to enjoy the view in privacy, read a book, surf the net, or just nap. We have a vast paved parking lot, ample room for your trailer.
Excellent accommodation is available nearby, there's a Tim Hortons a 10 minute walk away, and superb vantage points of the Lake and downtown Toronto are just a few minutes walk. And if you're from outside Toronto and really want to sell a non nautical spouse on the idea, we are a 20 minute drive from downtown Toronto shopping. Spouse is male? Okay, Apple and Microsoft stores are just 10 minutes away, and Great Hobbies (just say these magic words "aerial drones") is just 20 minutes. Ya it'll cost, but whichever destination, they'll be gone all day.
IT FORMS UP HERE
No matter how challenging the conditions, our sheltered, spacious, and uncluttered lagoon & dedicated dock give you a place to launch, rig and shake down before heading into the Lake. Lots of vantage points to take pictures too. The inner part of our lagoon is fringed with a gently sloping secluded beach, a favorite dry land spot from which some of our members prefer to tune their boats.