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Tampa Sailing


Est. 1964

TSS Cruising

The purpose of the cruising fleet is to promote cruising activities sailing Tampa Bay, Florida, and beyond for TSS members.

 Cruising Fleet Captain:  Maria Verstraete 727-656-4912

Upcoming Cruises

Reggae Rise Up 2024 Festival Cruise

Saturday, March 16, 2024, 8:00 AM until Sunday, March 17, 2024, 5:00 PM Eastern Time (US & Canada) (UTC-05:00)
St. Petersburg - Vinoy Marina, St. Pete Marina, St. Pete Anchorage

Cruise to St. Pete marina area and enjoy the Reggae Rise-up Festival.
Sail over and either stay in the marina or anchor out and experence the Reggae vibe.

Event website: 
Reggae Riseup Festival 2024

St. Petersburg - Vinoy Marina, St. Pete Marina, St. Pete Anchorage
Event Contact(s):
Herbert E Wittnebert
8136008008 (p)
813-600-8008 (c)

Drew's 4th Island Raft-up Cruise

"Drew’s 4th Island Raft-Up” Cruise Fleet - Event was cancelled and will be reschedule due to conflict

Host: Drew Barrett, / (813) 503-0688 

Event Name: 4th Island Overnight
Category: Cruise
Host(s): Drew Barrett
Host Vessel: In Quest Vessel Contact: VHF 16
Info Method: Board & Web
Contact Info: (813) 503-0688
Navigation Hints: Below  

This is an easy cruise to a protected anchorage. Plan to leave the club about 11:30 am. Spend some time sailing and arrive at the anchorage in time to secure your vessel and get to the beach.
Yes, we are going back in TSS history and returning to the beach instead of rafting up. This year will be the 4th Island cookout and bonfire on the beach.
The anchorage is close to the beach so you will just need a dinghy to get from your boat to the island. Even without an engine, you should be able to row in since it is so close. The club will provide hamburgers and hotdogs etc. Bring your own drinks and snacks or desert to share before and after the cookout. The club will purchase wood for the fire but each dinghy may need to help take a bundle to the beach.

Please be sure to register on the club website by the 19th with the total souls on your vessel so we can get the correct amount of food!

Plan your sail to arrive at the beach between 4 and 5. We shall have our BYOB Happy hour and shared hors d'oeuvres. We shall get the fire started, cook, eat and clean up while it is still light. Please help leave the island cleaner than it was when we arrived. Back to your boat, sleep, have breakfast and head back to TSS when you like.

The plan is to enjoy the area and company. It is possible to explore the island and at this time of year the hope is for no mosquitos. If weather (including extreme cold) is an issue, Plan B is to have a cookout and fire at the club.

Directions: Sail north in or parallel to the main shipping channel toward downtown Tampa. Turn east up the Alafia River channel; turn NNE between G7 and G9. 4th Island is the small Island off your port bow. The safest approach to the anchorage on the north side of the island is on the east side. Watch your depth. The large island nearby is a preserve and people are NOT permitted on that spoil island. The anchorage is protected accept for high winds forecast from the northeast or east. It is possible to sail eat on the beach and then go back to TSS.

I shall monitor channels 68 and 16. My MMSI number is: 338098168

Protocol/Procedures for Cruising:

Please sign up for cruising events on the TSS website if you plan on attending!

1. Login to the TSS website (
2. Click on the Event Calendar tab.     Link here:   Events/Calendar
Scroll to the date of the event, then click on the event you wish to attend.
When the event is displayed, click on the Register Now or Sign-up Now button. 

Member attendance counts towards compliance!

The TSS website is the official record for attendance and communication of cruising events. 

The Cruising Fleet Captain is responsible for TSS cruising and the cruising schedule and will assign a Host to each cruising event.  The event host will setup planning of the cruise, working with dockmasters, restaurants accommodation, etc.  

Please contact the Cruising Fleet Captain and/or Host if you plan to cruise, whether by boat or land, and if you have guests attending.  Please respect the time and work it takes in planning a cruise. The Cruising Fleet Captain and Host, unless otherwise noted, are the folks that communicates with the Dockmaster of event marina's. That is what the dockmaster's prefer.

Cruising Ground Rules:

Sailing with other boat Boat Best Practices: Clear communication, coordination, and adherence to best practices to ensure the safety and enjoyment of everyone involved. 

Communication and Coordination:
a. VHF Radios: All participating boats should have functioning VHF radios for easy and immediate communication.
b. Pre-Departure Briefing: Before setting sail, captains will conduct a pre-departure briefing to discuss the day's plan, destinations, potential hazards, and emergency procedures.
c. Check-ins: We will establish regular check-in times, especially during longer sailing legs, to ensure everyone is on course and experiencing no issues.

Responsibility and Decision-Making:
a. Individual Captain Responsibility: Each captain is responsible for the safety of their vessel and crew, including navigation, weather monitoring, and adherence to safety regulations.
b. Consensus on Routing: While each captain is responsible for their decisions, we may reach consensus on the planned route, anchorage spots, and sailing legs to enhance overall safety and coordination. 

Emergency Protocols:
a. Man Overboard Drills: Conduct regular man overboard drills to ensure all crew members are familiar with the procedures and equipment.
b. Emergency Contacts: Share emergency contact information among participating boats to facilitate swift communication in case of urgent situations.

Anchoring and Mooring:
a. Safe Anchoring Distances: Maintain a safe distance between boats when anchoring to avoid collisions and ensure swinging room.

Anchor Watch:  We recommend that you have some type of achor watch process. 

Weather Monitoring:
a. Weather Briefings: Before each sailing leg, captains should provide weather briefings, discussing potential challenges and allowing for adjustments to the plan if needed.
b. Weather Alerts: Keep an eye on weather updates during the journey, and communicate any significant changes to the group.

Towing Guidelines:  At no point are cruise participants obligated to tow another vessel
a. Risk Assessment: Participants should assess the risks involved in towing a disabled vessel and prioritize the safety of their own crew.
b. Professional Assistance: In the event of a disabled vessel, recommend calling a professional towing service rather than attempting to tow, minimizing risks to both vessels. 

Mutual Assistance:
a. Voluntary Assistance: While participants are not obligated to tow disabled vessels, they can offer assistance in other ways, such as providing information, coordinating with authorities, or standing by for support.
b. Emergency Protocols: Establish clear procedures for requesting and providing assistance in emergencies, emphasizing safety and effective communication.

Contingency Planning:
a. Emergency Rally Points: We will define emergency rally points or safe havens along the route where the group can regroup in case of separation or unforeseen circumstances as needed.
b. Alternative Routes: Discuss and agree upon alternative routes in case the planned route becomes impractical due to weather or other factors.

By adhering to these best practices, captains and crews can foster a safe and enjoyable sailing experience when cruising in a buddy boat arrangement.

Maria Verstraete
TSS Cruising Captain
727 656-4912


Cruising Schedule 2023 - 2024


Moonlight Sailing:

Come and Join us sailing under the moonlight, the dates were selected to have the best Moon Rise time and Tide for that Moon cycle.
Weather permitting we will meet on that Friday around 7:00 pm and go Sailing!
Text Maria Verstraete or Mike Smith a picture while you are sailing for complaince! 727 656-4912

Moonlight Sailing Calendar:



  Moon Rise Time



7:02 PM



6:44 PM



5:39 PM



4:26 PM

Upcoming Cruising Events:

Date Start Cruise Name and Destination Duration Cruise Description Sponsor
2/24/2024 THE DREW CRUISE!

2 Days Legendary Drew Cruise is back! Come sail to 4th Island on a full moon!

Spend the night at anchor and Sail back on Sunday
Drew Barrett
3/16/2024  Reggae Rise Up Cruise  2 Days  St. Pete
Cruise to St. Pete marina area and enjoy the Reggae Rise-up Festival.
Sail over and either stay in the marina or anchor out and experence the Reggae vibe. 
 3/30/2024  TAMPA BAY AIRFEST 2024  4 hours Event which will feature an amazing variety of military and civilian flight performances (including The United States Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron "Thunderbirds").
We will anchor in Tampa Bay in front of MacDill AFB. We will raft up weather permitting. 
 Maria & Joe Verstraete
5/24/2024 FLORIDA KEYS
12 Days More Details to come Joe and Maria Verstraete


Most marina's in Florida now use the Dockwa app to register and reserve slips and/or mooring balls.

Sign-up and create an account with Dockwa.  You can do this via your smartphone or a computer. 
Link to Dockwa here


Cruising Log and Participation:

Cruise Date Boat Name Owner Note
Terra Ceia Cruise  2/18/2023 Moko Kai Deb Doyle Sponsor
Terra Ceia Cruise  2/18/2023 FlagShip Michael Cronin Participant
Terra Ceia Cruise  2/18/2023 Manava Dave and Francine Webb Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  3/10/2023 In Quest Andrew Barret Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  3/10/2023 Gasconade Lyda Participant
Brew Cruise  3/10/2023 Panacea Tom and Lesa Dayley Sponsor
Brew Cruise  3/10/2023 Lagniappe Ed and Shannon Boudreaux Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  4/7/2023 FlagShip Michael Cronin Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  4/7/2023 Gasconade Lyda Participant
TSS Spring Long Cruise  4/22/2023 Lagniappe Ed and Shannon Boudreaux Sponsor
TSS Spring Long Cruise 4/22/2023
Panacea Tom and Lesa Dayley Participant
Moonlinght Sailing
 May 2023 Gasconade Lyda Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  June 2023 Gasconade Lyda Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  7/7/2023 Gasconade Lyda Participant
Ana Maria and Egmont Key  7/16/2023 Kangas Joe and Maria Verstraete Sponsor
Ana Maria and Egmont Key  7/16/2023 Panacea Tom and Lesa Dayley Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  8/4/2023 Karen Ann Thomas Conaty Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  8/4/2023 Gasconade Lyda Participant
Moonlinght Sailing  10/6/2023

Maria and Joe Verstraete
Guest: Emily

Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Lagniappe
Ed Boudreaux
Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Beneteau 331 MarkBertsche
Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Second Wind  Michael Chambers
Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Endeavor Marc Holtzberg
Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Aresa Dennis Huyck
Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Whisper Salli Osman (Ali)
Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Daydream Juan Prieto
Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23 Pixie  Charles Ramsey
 Fantasy Island Day Cruise 10/28/23   Libertad Daniel Roberts
Fantasy Island Day Cruise   10/28/23  Tethys Mathew Sheridan   
Fantasy Island Day Cruise  10/28/23   Argo  Louis Simon

Fantasy Island Day Cruise 


 Erin Shipton

 Lee Weicht