Information about the San Francisco Military Ship and Submarine Regatta

October 4th and 5th, 2003

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The regatta will be held at the Flycasting Ponds, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

About the event:

The San Francisco Military Regatta is a joint event between the San Francisco Model Yacht Club, and Subcommittee Mare Island Chapter.  All Military vessels are eligible to participate regardless of scale, and of course there is a large turnout of submarines at what is the premier West Coast submarine run.  Modelers who build in 1/96 scale are especially welcome to come out and try their hand at formation running with the many models in that scale the routinely show for the event.

Saturday is contest day, starting in the early morning and lasting to late afternoon.  Sunday is mostly free running day.

The contest usually draws vendors selling submarine and surface ship hulls, kits and electronics, books and photos.  There are usually modelers selling or trading surplus hobby items there as well.

Even if you don't have a running model at this time it is a very worthwhile event to attend, as you will meet a lot of great modelers and get a bit of inspiration for that project you've been thinking about.

Hope to see you there!


How to get there:

From the Golden Gate Bridge:  Head south on 19th Ave as you cross the bridge.  Make a right on Geary Blvd.  Make a left on 33rd Ave.  Make a right on Fulton Ave, and a left into the Park at the 36th Ave entrance.  You will see Spreckel's lake on your left.  Continue down to the intersection, which is John F. Kennedy Drive, and make a right.  You will see the Buffalo enclosure on your right side, and a small sign indicating the Fly Casting Pool on the left.

From the Oakland Bay Bridge: Take the exit towards MISSION ST/FELL STREET Merge onto US-101 North. Stay straight to go onto Central Skyway Merge onto FELL  Street Turn RIGHT onto DIVISADERO Street Turn LEFT onto FULTON Street. Make a left into the park at the 36th Ave entrance. You will see Spreckel's lake on your left.  Continue down to the intersection, which is John F. Kennedy Drive, and make a right.  You will see the Buffalo enclosure on your right side, and a small sign indicating the Fly Casting Pool on the left.

From the San Francisco Peninsula:  Take Freeway 280 North.  Exit at 19th Ave.  Proceed up 19th ave until you get into Golden Gate Park.  Stay in your left lane.  You will get to a stop light, where the main road curves right, stay in the left lane.  Proceed through the light, and take the first left (this will be very sharp, almost a U-turn.  When you get to the first intersection, take a right on John F. Kennedy drive.  Follow this past a small lake on your right, and to an intersection where you will see Spreckels lake on your right.  Keep going straight, and you will see the Buffalo enclosure on your right.  Turn left into the Fly Casting pools parking lot.


Expensive in San Francisco, even in marginal areas.  I would recommend staying on the Peninsula.  There are many motels along El Camino Real in South San Francisco, San Bruno and Millbrae.  These are all reasonably safe areas.  You will be about a 20 minute drive from the regatta site in these areas.


There are bathrooms and a water fountain at the regatta site.  You will need to bring your own lunch and beverages, as there are no restaurants or stores within walking distance.  There is a Safeway Grocery store that makes sandwiches outside the park on the west side, just north of Fulton.

You should bring:

A canopy if the sun is shining, as it can get hot in San Francisco that time or year - or not.  Natives recommend dressing in layers, as it can sometimes be very warm or very cold on the same day.   Even on a nice day, the wind usually picks up in the afternoon, and morning fog is not uncommon.  There are limited benches and no tables; you should bring chairs and tables if you need either.  There are no electrical outlets near the pond.

What else to see:

San Francisco has a host of attractions to the maritime enthusiast, including a museum submarine (the Pampanito) a museum Liberty Ship ( the Jeremiah O'brien) and a nice maritime museum near the Hyde Street Pier.  The aircraft carrier Hornet is open for visitors in Alameda, across the bay. Of course, there are many non ship related things to see in San Francisco as well! Email me if you would like other suggestions, depending on your interests.

Hobby Shops:

Franciscan Hobbies  (1920-A Ocean Avenue  San Francisco, CA 94127-2745;  415-584-3919 ) is by far the best in the area.  They carry a very nice boat and ship model selection, including fittings and books you don't commonly find in hobby shops.  I understand that Bob Evans from the shop is planning to have a display at the regatta; but you still might want to visit and stock up a bit.  They are open on weekends.

Hobby Company of San Francisco (5150 Geary Blvd San Francisco, CA (415) 386-2802)  (no web site found). Pretty much a normal hobby store.  If you are staying in that area, and need glue or such for the regatta, you can pick that up there.

J&M Hobby House (1660 Laurel StreetSan Carlos, CA 94070) About a 25 minute drive south of the lake.Worth a stop, as they carry a lot of boat parts and fittings, more than most hobby shops.  Closed Sundays.

San Antonio Hobbies - San Antonio Hobbies, (2550 W. El Camino Real Mountain View CA 94040-1307 (650)941-1279 ) One  of the largest hobby shops in the country, located in Mountain View, about a 45 minute drive south of the lake.  An impresive selection of plastic kits, and a very nice reference section with naval books from around the world.  Closed Sunday

Questions?  Email me here.

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