David Sites earned the title of top-scoring Century Club member in 2023 to win the Erewhon Award in honor of Jack Sherwood. He logged a whopping 365 days on the water and broke the record! This new record beat Robert Alusic’s 343 days in 2022 and five-time Erewhon Award winner Dave Nestel’s 327 days in 2021. In order to qualify for the club, a boater must reach at least 100 days on the water in the calendar year.
Our award winner in 2023 earned most of his days by powerboat. We’re serious when we say this club is open to all boaters: sailors, powerboaters, paddlers, anglers, and any combination thereof. To learn how you can join the fun in 2024, visit spinsheet.com/century-club.
David Sites: 365 Days
Name a few stand-out days from your year on the water.
One of my favorite memories was going out on the Schooner Woodwind with Captain Jen and her crew. The Bay was frisky, which made for a fun sail, and an extra bonus was an onboard history lesson by (SpinSheet founding editor) Dave Gendell. An awesome day with awesome friends.
Another standout day was when we went to Ocean City for a car show. I had planned on going for a boat ride to get my day in, but nobody would go out because of gale force winds. We called all over, but nobody would take me out. We finally found a kayak rental company down near Assateague Island that opened up for us after hearing about the challenge and set us up in a pedal kayak. We had a great ride in a beautiful area, which seemed like a nature preserve. Because of this, I subsequently ended up buying three new pedal kayaks for the house.
My favorite memory was day number 365. A bunch of my favorite friends, new and old, took two boats out to celebrate the final day of the SpinSheet challenge. After the boat ride, we had a party at my house. It was another awesome day with a bunch of awesome friends.
Did anything scary happen out there this year?
There was a well-known lighthouse photographer who goes around the country photographing lighthouses in the dark. He came here to photograph the Thomas Point Lighthouse. I went out to the lighthouse to see if I could be of any help. It was a pitch-black night. The Bay was pretty rough, and the tide was running very hard. We had to wait until long after sunset.
The photographer was having a problem setting up a specialized tripod that would sit in the water because the tide kept pushing it over. He had me anchor my boat about 50 yards from where he was and set me up with a large light to shine on the lighthouse. He decided that it might be best to go out on the rock pile next to the lighthouse to take his photos, and it went downhill from there. He tried to take a small dinghy to the rocks. I could barely see them but could tell that they were having a hard time rowing to the rocks because of the tide. In the end, everyone made it home safely, but it was a scary night.
What were your favorite wildlife sightings?
My favorite wildlife sighting would have to be the dolphins; it’s always cool when you come across them on the Bay. Sometimes I would just stop and turn off the engines and watch them swim around the boat. I really enjoy the great blue herons and the bald eagles.
What did you get out of spending so much time on the water?
Spending so much time on the water allowed me to try new things and explore new places. It led to many off-the-water experiences also. I have become involved with the Thomas Point Lighthouse and have been through it several times; I even attended their annual party. I got to attend the commissioning of a Navy battleship and take a tour of the ship. The people that I have met and the friendships that I have made during this experience are priceless.
What’s your advice to aspiring Century Club members?
My advice to anyone that is thinking of doing the SpinSheet Century Club Challenge would be to just enjoy each outing. Try new things and explore new places.
Follow David Sites on Instagram @motoxdms.