After having to present virtual Charity Regattas for two years, the sun came out to shine on a beautiful in-person Charity Regatta on Saturday, September 10, 2022. The tradition continued on as the Santa Barbara Yacht Club (SBYC) hosted 300 people for the 18th Annual Charity Regatta and everyone was delighted to be together.
This year was also the celebration of the 150th Anniversary for SBYC. Race Boats raced and Spectator Boats either had dock parties or took delighted guests out to see the Memorial Boat Ceremony and to see the race from the water. With incredible support from SBYC and the VNA Health Board of Directors, over $167,000 was raised for VNA Health’s charitable community programs and services.
Commodore Eli Parker kicked off the Charity Regatta’s Opening Ceremony with Charlie Payne, Ryan and Tyler McClain, all members of Boy Scout Montecito Troop 33, who have participated with Presenting the Colors and Pledge of Allegiance since they were cub scouts eight years ago. They are currently working to achieve the rank of Eagle Scout, which is the highest rank for a scout with only 5% of scouts obtaining the rank.
David Gonzales, who has performed for the Charity Regatta for over six years sang the National Anthem.
The day was filled with an exciting Raffle and a very active Silent Auction.
The Memorial Boat Ceremony was held on Sandy and Rear Commodore Dennis Boneck’s boat, Isla. Commodore Eli Parker conducted the ceremony and the reading of the loved ones’ names while Whitney Parker scattered flowers on the ocean, David Gonzales sang “Amazing Grace” and James Watson played “Taps” on the trumpet. Click here to watch the video.
After a delicious buffet by Chef Owen Hanavan and his crew, the Closing Ceremony commenced, where Eli Parker presented the Big Check to VNA Health President and CEO, Kieran Shah. A special addition was the appearance of Linda Seals, Lad Handelman’s widow. She shared a heartfelt testimony about the care that Lad received from VNA Health (which she credits for helping her husband live 25 years more than what was predicted). and then she announced a bequest for VNA Health for $247,000. She urged the guests to “consider putting VNA Health in their estate plans to ensure that their remarkable care continues for the entire community.”
Throughout the day, musicians Ross Harper and Sam Kultchin entertained the guests at the clubhouse. The Davitt Felder Band later got the crowd singing, swaying and dancing to old favorites and topped off a spectacular Regatta day.