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Jade: Captivating The Bar East Hampton Point

T.J. Clemente

Before John Mooney purchased JADE. her name was WEB III, designed for a Danish Yachtsman for the 1956 Olympics. (Photo: T.J. Clemente)

At East Hampton Point, located on 3 Mile Harbor, one can't get a drink at the bar without admiring the sailboat JADE. Fully Rigged inside the bar!Here is some new inside information about the Yacht.

I had met Anne Mooney, daughter of the last owner of JADE, years back, but on Monday I asked her to tell some of JADE's story. This is some of what she said.

Fully rigged inside the bar! (Photo: T.J. Clemente)

"I know that my father, John B. Mooney, was friends with Dick Sage who I think was the original owner and builder of the bar (now East Hampton Point). Dad sold the boat to Dick who had the bar built around it, including adding the cupola to accommodate the mast. JADE was named for the four oldest children (out of six), an acronym from our initials John, Anne, David and Elisabeth. She (JADE) is a 5.5-meter and was built as the class was losing its status as an Olympic class boat in the late 60s I think. I also think she was built in Norway but not positive about that. (JADE was built in Sealand, Denmark.) She marked the end of my father's effort to make it to the Olympics, which he pursued from at least the 1956 quadrennial. I don't know if he took her to any major 5.5 meter events, or any of her racing history." She went on to say, " John (her brother) ...was old enough to have sailed her and I think may have helped with the delivery sail down the Sound from Oyster Bay to Three Mile Harbor."

So I asked her if she ever had been by to see the boat. She replied, "I found my way to the bar a little more than 10 years ago, not having been there since I was a child. It's an amazing thing to see a fully rigged 5.5-meter inside the bar. She really is a beautifully built boat with her varnished topsides." Then Anne Mooney a world-class sailor of distinction herself went into detail explaining about JADE.

"They (5.5 meter yachts) were technically difficult to sail and physically demanding as well, requiring at least one large person in the middle position to fly a spinnaker that was really large for a boat that size. As you may know, the 5.5 meters were not a 'one design' where all boats of that class are exactly the same; they instead were a 'rule boat' like the other meter boats including 12 meters. Meaning the design had to conform a design rule which allowed changes to a series of parameters including sail area and water line length, among other things. So they were experimental and pushed the state of naval architecture and engineering in their day, which was one of the things that really appealed to my father and others who sailed those boats. They loved the challenge of solving the technical problems. It also meant that boats were designed for the anticipated conditions at each Olympic venue, so they became obsolete very quickly."

Before John Mooney purchased JADE. her name was WEB III, designed for a Danish Yachtsman for the 1956 Olympics. It participated in four Olympics but never medaled. Mr. Mooney purchased it in the late 1960's and had it shipped from Denmark to Oyster Bay, Long Island before eventually selling it to Dick Sage. It is one beautiful thing.

By the way my sailboat, CAELAN SHEA, is now in the water, so hurrah, my 2013 sailing season out of 3 Mile Harbor has started.

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