Boat Shop’s Tender Winner

Jonathan Russo of Shelter Island (in plaid) was the winner of the East End Classic Boat Society’s 2011 fund-raising raffle. His prize was a Sunshine tender and trailer made by the group’s members
Jonathan Russo of Shelter Island (in plaid) was the winner of the East End Classic Boat Society’s 2011 fund-raising raffle. His prize was a Sunshine tender and trailer made by the group’s members, some of whom were on hand Saturday when Mr. Russo came to get the boat. Bill Good

    Jonathan Russo of Shelter Island said he had a premonition. In fact, when he bought a book of raffle tickets during the summer as part of a benefit for the East End Classic Boat Society, “I absolutely said, ‘It will be mine.’ ”
    And it was, a lapstrake Sunshine tender built by members of the society last summer. The sleek tender comes with a trailer and the boat’s propulsion system — a pair of oars. Mr. Russo bought his tickets at Sag Harbor’s HarborFest in September. The raffle benefited the not-for-profit Amagansett organization.
    Ray Hartjen, the group’s president, said the 10.6-foot tender was started a year ago and finished in December. It was constructed of steam-bent oak with Atlantic white cedar planking.
    “I hated to see it go,” he said, going on to pine over the tender’s apple wood knees as well as the previous boat, its 25-year-old mahogany transom in particular. The society held a meeting Tuesday evening to decide what the next benefit boat would be. Mr. Hartjen said he hoped it would be finished faster so a second one might be built that the society could keep on display.
    Meanwhile, Mr. Russo took possession of his new tender at about noon on Saturday and had it in the water that afternoon. “I’m so excited and happy,” he said on Monday. The boat will be called Yar, Katharine Hepburn’s Down East description of Dexter’s yacht True Love in the 1940 film “The Philadelphia Story,” Mr. Russo said. It means easy to handle, quick to the helm.
    Mr. Hartjen said the winner had called to report it was indeed yar, perfectly balanced. As a sailor he wondered if the mast step in the tender actually meant it could be converted to sail.
    “We have patterns for a dagger board and rudder,” Mr. Hartjen said.