California Sea Scouts earn BoatU.S. award

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – BoatU.S. awarded its 2009 Sea Scout Flagship Award to the top performing Sea Scout unit in the nation, Ship 90, Renegade, of Newport Beach, CA, at a ceremony last night in Alameda, the association reported in a statement this morning.

The award, presented during the 57th Annual Ancient Mariner Sea Scout Regatta, recognized the unit for excellence in program quality, youth achievement and adult commitment during 2008.

“We are particularly proud of this year’s winner since Ship 90 is the third California Sea Scout unit to earn this recognition,” said BoatU.S. West Coast Representative Bryan Dove, who presented the award to Matthew Zimmermann, the ship’s boatswain or youth leader. Skipper Tim Martin, the adult leader and an alumnus of Sea Scout Ship 711, Del Mar, which won the Flagship Award in 2006, joined Zimmermann in accepting the trophy.

Like all Sea Scout units, Ship 90 uses boats, seamanship and nautical skills to develop character and leadership qualities in young people, both male and female, the association explained. With over 20 youth active in the program, Ship 90 has enough crew to campaign a Beckman 60 sloop, Dare, in the Southern California sailboat racing circuit as well as the smaller boats it has available in its homeport at Boy Scouts of America’s Newport Sea Base in Orange County, Calif., the associated stated.

Dove made the official Flagship presentation during the Ancient Mariner awards ceremony that culminated a Memorial Day weekend of competition among two dozen Sea Scout Ships from around the region. They tested their skills in 25 venues including seamanship, whaleboat races, sailing, piloting and knot tying during the event held at the USS Hornet Museum moored at former Naval Air Station Alameda, Calif.

Sea Scouting is a co-ed program for young adults age 14-20 with over 8,000 youth participating in 550 Ships nationwide. A perpetual trophy bearing the names of the annual winning Ships resides at the BSA National Scouting Museum in Irving, Texas. For more information, visit: www.SeaScout.org.

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