Boe-Craft Skeeter

Ice Yacht Association

Home Page

Here is a link to photos taken by George Ciotti during the Regatta.
Great shots of the racers and cruisers sailing off Fontana Beach, January 31st, 2015.



E-mail account is now active.

Another New hull is in progress this off-season.

See the Skeeter Haven Page in off season projects for photos of the build as it progresses.

Matt Mason, a  Lake Geneva Wedding photographer, took some amazing video footage in January 2010 of many of the Boe-Craft owners on Geneva Lake.  The area of sailable ice was small but was sufficient size to make the video.  Enjoy! 

Video is posted on YouTube and on Matt's Website

Visitor Count (2010):

Bill Boehmke

2013 Regatta Photo Link

Ice Boat Regatta on Lake Geneva 2-16-13 | AS5U2756_HDR

January 30th, 2011
Check out the YouTube video link below.
This was taken by Paul Wood on the second day of Wednesday racing on Delavan.

November 28th, 2015
Boats and trailers are being readied for ice that has not yet arrived. Here are some of the results of work done this summer and fall:

Troy Soberg Finished his boat AND trailer.

Burly Brellenthin's boat got a fresh coat of paint on the deck.

Mike Ortiz got a full make over to all Blonde parts and electric blue deck.

Don Cain got a full professional make over from glass covered to clear coated paint and Blond sides.

October 24th, 2015
Time to once again get ready for the upcoming season. There have been some repair and refurbishments going on this last warm season.

Troy Soberg has reworked the old Montana repair on Joe College.

While he was at it he decided to add handles to save our backs!

Currently the rest of the hull has been stripped, re-blonded and is getting many coats of varnish.

August 20th, 2015
Geneva Lake turns treacherous for Boecraft Skipper Bob Youngquist when the ice melts.

Luckily many of the Boecraft fleet was spectating on Squeak Clayton's pontoon boat and were able to tow Bob dry and to a north shore pier without getting tangled in the gate.

Big wind at the big inland.

July 15th, 2015
Boecraft and SIBC sailors gathered at the Cruise-In in Walworth to celebrate Burly Brellenthin's 90th birthday. A good time was had by all. Thanks to Chuck and Casey for getting everyone together.
Burly is still pleasure sailing and running races for us. His career spans the entire history of the skeeter. He started out racing in the sternsteerer Dorla, and then went on to race the Clancey very successfully with Glydwell Gerber before he moved into skeeters.
He will probably be the first on to the ice again next season.

April 12th, 2015
The combined Boecraft and SIBC Tophy Banquet was held on Saturday April 11th at Café Calamari. A good time was had by all.

Promises of great ice and dozens of races for next season were made by the incoming officers.

March 23rd, 2015
The ISA championship Regatta was held March 20-22nd, 2015 at Little Bay De Noc, Upper Michigan.
After much searching for conditions, with locations in play from Burlington, Vermont to Gull Lake near Brainerd, Minnesota, the decision was made to go for it on Little Bay De Noc. Thanks to the scouting work by Mike Derusha and Ken Kreider, drive on ice with a workable surface was put in play.

Six B skeeters attended, five Boecraft and one Yankee.
The competitors were: Mark Hancik from Pennsylvania in his Yankee, Fritz Button, Jimmy McAvoy, Jimmy McDonagh in John Dennis's Puffer, Rick Pappas, and Steve Schalk.

While testing conditions on Thursday afternoon, Jimmy McDonagh pulled Puffer's boom in half in the pits. Rick took one look and went to his trailer and pulled out his spare boom. In 10 minutes Puffer was re-rigged with an almost matching red boom and was back in business.

Courtesy Deb Whitehorse
The first day of racing was done in 7 to 12 mph breezes 
on slowly softening ice.
Rick and Jimmy were untouchable in the first race, running first and second from start to finish.
The second race featured some really impressive wind shifts, with Puffer and Skating Away tight up until an auto tack on the second leeward mark rounding. Fritz came through the stalled Puffer to finish second with Rick third. Jimmy McAvoy learned just how quick these boats stop from 50 or so miles an hour when the parking brake flips on!
A third race was sailed on Friday as a back-up, but was not used due to getting races in on Saturday.

On Saturday after a little rain and big temperature drop, racing started up again on time at 9:30 local time.

Fritz and I set the course between sun-up at 7:50 and 8:40 am.
The winds were steady around 15-19 with gusts to 24.
In the first race.
Mark Hancik led start to finish and could not be caught. He worked every shift, including the big knock coming into the windward mark on starboard every time to perfection.

The second race was just as windy but a little more shifty. After an early split Skating Away was able to hit the shifting starboard lay-line around the windward mark a little hot and blast through between Puffer and Mark in Rebel. A couple of private shifts resulted in a half mile finish over Puffer while Mark lost a framing stay and retired.

The last day got severely shortened by the opening of the ice along the entire shoreline with four to twelve inch wide cracks, wiping out the original launch and making it urgent that Mike Derusha carve out an escape route across the plowed-up drifts along the beach. The regatta was made final and everybody co-operated to get off.

Courtesy Deb Whitehorse

2015 ISA B Skeeter

Little Bay de Noc March 20, 21, 22, 2015

Rank Boat Class SailNo HelmName R1 R2 R3 R4 Total
1st Skating Away II B I 564 Steve Schalk 3.0 1.0 2.0 1.0 7.0
2nd Akebono B I 270 Rick Pappas 1.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 10.0
3rd Puffer B I 234 Jimmy McDonagh 4.0 4.0 4.0 2.0 14.0
4th Rebel B L 219 Mark Hancik 5.0 5.0 1.0 7.0 DNF 18.0
5th B-Sting II B I 228 Fritz Button 6.0 2.0 6.0 4.0 18.0
6th Willow Bender B I 112 James McAvoy 2.0 6.0 5.0 5.0 18.0

Sailwave Scoring Software 2.02 build 6

February 1st, 2015
The 2015 BoeCraft Championship Regatta was called on for Friday, Saturday and Sunday Starting at 11:00am January 30th

The first day allowed lots of time for set up, tuning and story-telling, as the wind failed to co-operate at all.

With a two hour wind window to work with on Saturday, a one mile course out of the WSW was set and the first race went off at 10:03am.
Dan Janikowski won that race and proceeded to dominate the next two races as the wind lightened.
The course had to be shifted just once between the second and third races.
With the wind going down the fleet headed in. The wind continued to drop and with the forecast snow and wind for Sunday looming, the Regatta was concluded.
After a great lunch set up by Pam Mereness and Mary Jane Schalk, everyone turned to the process of taking all the boats off to avoid the coming snow event.
With everyone packed up the Presentation was held about 4pm.

The 2015 BoeCraft Champion is Dan Janikowski. He wins the Mel Lundberg Championship Trophy.
He also wins the Skating Away II trophy for the first race, and the Jack in the Green Trophy for the last race.

2015 Boe-Craft Championship Regatta

3 races sailed on Geneva January 31, 2014

2015 BoeCraft Championship Regatta - ties corrected

Rank Boat SailNo HelmName R1
1st Halloweenee I 744 Dan Janikowski 1.0 1.0 1.0 3.0
2nd Skating Away II I 564 Steve Schalk 2.0 2.0 2.0 6.0
3rd Akebono I 114 Rick Pappas 3.0 3.0 3.0 9.0
4th B Sting II I 228 Fritz Button 6.0 4.0 6.0 16.0
5th Zephyr III I 24 Bob Mereness 4.0 5.0 7.0 16.0
6th Mickey Finn I 7 Bob Youngquist 8.0 6.0 4.0 18.0
7th Proud Rebel IV I 109 Sparky Lundberg 5.0 8.0 8.0 21.0
8th Ramblin Rebel II I 1109 Cody Heindl 7.0 7.0 10.0 24.0
9th Joe College I 140 Troy Soberg 13.0 DNC 13.0 DNC 5.0 31.0
10th InXcess I 406 Chuck Kaye 11.0 9.0 11.0 31.0
11th Satan I 237 Casey Schiche 10.0 13.0 DNC 9.0 32.0
12th WillowBender I 112 Jimmy McAvoy 9.0 13.0 DNC 13.0 DNC 35.0
13th Royal Wulff I 202 Lyle Clayton 13.0 DNC 10.0 13.0 DNF 36.0


Sailwave Scoring Software 2.02 build 6

Many thanks to Burly Brellenthin for sailing out to start and score the races for us, and to Pam and Mary Jane for the food and drink, and the Lundbergs for the deserts.

January 29th, 2015
With the ice thickness finally up to 4 inches the first races of the Season were held in the far West end of Geneva Lake.
The Hole and working seam in the photo just below are still there, and mark the eastern edge of our available sailing area. A Christmas tree marks the western end of the hole nearest to Fontana.
Racing shore to shore in a SSE wind made for tricky windward mark roundings with big shifts and velocity changes.
Rick Pappas dominated the first day with a "new" 1993 sail from Casey's basement.

2014 Boe-Craft Wednesday Series
Sailed on Geneva 1/28/2015

Sailed: 3, Discards: 0, To count: 3, Entries: 8, Scoring system: Appendix A
Rank Boat SailNo HelmName R1
Total Nett
1st Akebono I 114 Rick Pappas 1.0 1.0 2.0 4.0 4.0
2nd Skating Away II I 564 Steve Schalk 3.0 3.0 1.0 7.0 7.0
3rd Proud Rebel IV I 109 Sparky Lundberg 2.0 4.0 3.0 9.0 9.0
4th Satan I 237 Casey Schiche 8.0 DNF 2.0 4.0 14.0 14.0
5th Ramblin Rebel I 1109 Cody Heindl 4.0 5.0 6.0 15.0 15.0
6th Zephyr III I 24 Bob Mereness 6.0 6.0 7.0 19.0 19.0
7th B-Sting I 228 Fritz Button 5.0 7.0 8.0 20.0 20.0
8th Willowbender I 112 Jimmy McAvoy 9.0 DNC 9.0 DNC 5.0 23.0 23.0

Sailwave Scoring Software 2.02 build 6

January 23rd, 2015
We have less than a mile to work with before we get to the newest ice. Based on the fly over check from Bob Mereness, we have some significant issues to the East of Fontana.

January 22nd, 2015
We started setting up off the Fontana Beach on January 15th, with only a couple of hundred yards of ice thick enough to sail.
As we wait for the ice thickness to grow in the center, lots of minor repairs and maintenance has been underway.
December 28th, 2014
Lake Puckaway was the place to sail last weekend. There was a little too much wind on Saturday and not a whole lot on Sunday, but there was opportunity to sail both days for Todd Morgan and Troy Soberg.

December 16th 2014
After well over a week of sailing days on Lake Como, all seven of the Boecrafts that were on the ice at some point in late November and early December are off waiting for a new freeze.

November 27th, 2014
A group of Boecraft owners are building some new sets of runners at the Button shop.

The axle tube and plate assemblies are being welded now, while the blades are being shipped from Kankakee IL.

October 19, 2014
Todd Morgan has completed his refinish job on the
Miss Geneva III.

August 31st, 2014
Final Assembly took place on Sunday the 31st.

Thanks to everyone for their assistance and patience as the plank was drilled and framing stays made up.

More photos on the Skeeter Haven Page

photo - Casey Schiche

August 20, 2014
Lyle Clayton's Skeeter is coming along. It should be assembled before September.
See the Skeeter Haven Page for photos.
Better Late than Never
SIBC Commodore Rick Pappas finally receives the OH NO award for swimming with his ice yacht in January of 2014.

Still July 27th
The standard 64 clamp cockpit gluing shot:
July 27th, 2014
The deck is on. Still a lot to go but it really looks like a boat now.
Lots of pictures on the Skeeter Haven Page.
July 1st 2014
Shaping and topside construction proceeding.

JUNE 29th 2014
The sides went on Friday the 27th thanks to the helpers.

Clamps off and some shaping started 6-28. More pictures on the Skeeter Haven Page.

JUNE 23rd 2014
The newest Boecraft is taking shape. Here are a few photos. For a lot more see the Skeeter Haven page in Off-Season Projects.

2014 SIBC & Boe-Craft Banquet
Here are a Few Very late photos from the Banquet held on April 5th, 2014.

Jimmy McAvoy was most improved again!

Popeye's, Geneva Inn, Pier 290, Chuck's

2014 ISA Flushed by Thursday night downpour.
When the water drained through it cut runner swallowing holes at the crack intersections. Done for this season!

2014 ISA Regatta is on for Green Lake

Meanwhile - at Geneva Lake
The Boecraft Fleet who stayed at home got some breakfast cruising on Saturday and a lot of ice time.
March 17th, 2014
The 2014 Northwestern Ice-Yachting Association Regatta was completed on Sunday March 16th.
Six Boecraft and Two Yankee B Division Skeeters sailed for the B-Skeeter Trophy.
Winds were gusty and steadily increasing on Friday with temperatures over 40 creating soft and sticky conditions. Only one B race was held before the wind went to 30mph and races were abandoned for the day.
Mark Hancik in the world's fastest Yankee took the first race going away. He managed to avoid every wind hole that caught out everyone else. Peter Vandevelde showed his consistent speed in slush conditions again to take Second.
Jimmy had the leeward cone jump right out in front of him and he just couldn't avoid it!

All Photos Courtesy of Tim Bryden

Saturday brought light wind allowing only the first race - NIYA Class E - the A skeeters, to finish, and not all finished within a half hour of the leader. 
No wind for the rest of the day meant the fleet could tow in and have a great cookout put on by the Green Lake IceYacht Club.

Sunday brought 10 degrees and plenty of wind. Two races were held for the B Skeeters. The ice was hard and a little bumpy but plenty fast. The first race went to the NIYA race Committee chairman, with Jimmy McAvoy taking second to create a tie for first going into the last race.
The third race was dominated by Fritz Button in the newest Boecraft, while Hancik and Schalk fought to break the tie. At the end Troy Soberg caught and passed Mark for third place and the final positions were set.

2014 NIYA B Skeeter

March 14 - 16 Green Lake Wisconsin

Results are final as of 3:00 pm on March 16th

Rank Class SailNo HelmName R1 R2 R3 Total
1st B I 564 Steve Schalk 3 1 2 6.0
2nd B 219 Mark Hancik 1 3 4 8.0
3rd B I 228 Fritz Button 5 4 1 10.0
4th B Z 402 Peter Vandervelde 2 6 6 14.0
5th B I 112 Jim McAvoy DSQ 2 5 16.0
6th B I 140 Troy Soberg DNC 5 3 17.0
7th B 401 Jeff Smith 4 DNC DNC 22.0
8th B Z 254 Todd Morgan DNF DNC DNC 27.0


Sailwave Scoring Software 2.02 build 6

MARCH 9TH, 2014

February 17th, 2014
The only iceboating activities since the last update have been repair work and telling stories at Wednesday Lunches.
Mike Ortiz will be ready to go with a revised springboard when we finally get a thaw.
The Miss Geneva will be ready to head back to Green Lake this week with a major internal rebuild, new bottom, new steering cables and hardware, new framing stays, and new side stays.
We continue to get hammered by repeated snow build-up. We have a lot of ice under the snow so there is still hope for spring sailing.

Here is a little bit of history while we are waiting. The image below is the first season of B skeeters racing as a separate start and actual championship in the Skeeter Iceboat Club. The year was 1964. Four of the seven boats in the championship series are still in service today.

More History in the coming days as there are not many options in North America. Maybe we head to Canyon Ferry. It looks Like their snow is melting.

January 20th, 2014
After 4 days of cruising on partially snow covered ice with a bit of a rough surface, we are on hold waiting for a thaw. The small, almost daily snowfalls have added up to enough to create drifts. The drifts have now gotten pretty hard.
Any sailing is better than none however and most took advantage of the opportunity. There were 11 different Boecrafts sailing on Geneva Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
It was possible to sail from Williams bay nearly to Linn Pier and from Fontana up to the Conference Point to Chicago Club Heave/Seam.

The NIYA Regatta and ISA are postponed. There is no known race ready ice in North America right now, but we have less snow cover than any other NIYA site, so a meltdown would probably clear Geneva first.
Make and Mend time for a couple of weeks.

January 14th, 2014
The snow did not happen and the trapped water in the shell ice has frozen solid to the ice underneath. We have a good chance now.

January 13th, 2014
The 2014 Northwestern Yachting Association Championship Regatta is on for Friday January 17th.
The bad news is that the weather forecast, if it is anywhere close to accurate, will result in a postponement.

To top off the bad news, Geneva is 70 to 80 percent shell ice and will also get snow cover from this storm.

Todd Morgan, Peter Vandervelde and Troy Soberg got to sail at Green lake before the shell ice and wind got too bad on Sunday.
The Miss Geneva is now due for a nose job, and it looks like Troy will need to go back to Green Lake and dig his boat out of a snow drift.