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January-February 2017 Double Issue Edition

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In This Issue:

ADA Crystal River Swim with the Manatees
February 17 - 20, 2017

--by Lon Von Lintel


Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

During the cold winter months, manatee move into the warmer waters of the Florida springs and the surrounding waters. Crystal River is famous for its congregation of manatees.  We are virtually assured of seeing them in large numbers.  The water will be cold by Florida standards, 70 to 72 degrees, so wet suits are needed.

ADA has reserved 20 spaces on board with Bird's Underwater Dive Center, Crystal River. The cost is $65 per person, per day and includes wet suit, snorkel gear, hot drinks, and snacks. Bill Bird has operated this facility right on the dock, since 1986 and has been featured on more than 25 TV shows. HIs stable pontoon boats offer enclosed areas with changing rooms. He also offers the PADI Manatee Awareness certification, as an extra cost option. We have reserved the morning excursions on February 18 and 19. The cost for both days is $130 per person for boat tickets only. Food, lodging, land transportation, and other expenses not included.

ADA has also reserved camp sites on the Lake Panasoffkee KOA near Crystal River. We have 3 RV/camper sites and 4 tent sites. Dates reserved are February 15 through February 20.  Per night cost is approximately $20 for the tent sites and $40 for the RV/camper sites.  KOA grounds include pool, recreation hall, laundry room, bath house, fishing pier, WiFi, etc. Call 305-251-4975 to reserve your dates for any, or all 5 nights.


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FREE BBQ, FREE DIVE!! PRIZES

--by Jerry Kosakowski

When: Saturday, April 8, 2017

Who?: ADA members, prospective members, family and friends.

Where: DR. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson (formerly: John U Lloyd State Park), Jetty Pavillion, 6503 N. Ocean Drive, Dania Beach, Florida 33004 1.5 miles north of Sheridan St. on A1A


Time: Park opens at 8:00 AM. Meet for beach dive at 9:00 AM, BBQ at noon.

MUST BE PRESENT TO WIN RAFFLE PRIZES. MUST RSVP TO WIN PRIZES.

Bring Your Dive gear for Sale or Swap!!

Call Lon at 305-251-4975 to sign up, deadline April 5th for RSVP. For beach diving, bring all your own gear and a dive flag if you have one. The reef is about 100 yards off shore. It’s a great surface swim out, or dve in close and enjoy the reef. The pavilion has covered shelter, very nice bathroom, showers, and changing room. We will have the BBQ and raffle, rain or shine. BBQ will include burgers, dogs, chicken, extras and all drinks. A small fee is charged to enter the park ($4 for single occupancy vehicles, $6 for 2-8 persons per vehicle), free parking at the pavilion.

ADA BBQ, Raffle, and Beach Dive: $10

For those who have never previously belonged to ADA and newly join ADA that day (at a discounted rate of $35 for the early season signup) the barbeque will be free! Current ADA members pay only $10 per person and includes the lunch, raffle, and optional beach diving. Non-ADA members and non-family members may attend but will be asked to contribute $10 for the BBQ. They may also dive, but are not part of the ADA dive group and not eligible for prizes. Purchase may be via the PayPal button at right.

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It's Time To Renew For Discounted Rates

--by Dr. Dan Baeza

The clock is counting down and we are nearing the last chance to renew at a reduced rate. Renew now and your membership fee is only $35 for a calendar year of discounts and diving news. After March 31, your annual membership renewal fee is $45.

Your membership includes periodic eNews emails about club activities as well as electronic access to The Mouthpiece monthly newsletter. You may pay by check or online. Go to http://activedivers.org/Membership-Renewal.html to renew your membership online. To pay by check, mail a check made out to "Active Divers Association"  with the appropriate amount to:

Dr. Dan Baeza
Membership Chairman
Active Divers Association
7592 Parkview Way
Coral Springs, FL 33065

Note: If unsure when your membership expires, drop us a note at ActiveDiversInfo@gmail.com. Include your name and "Membership Expiration Date" in the subject line.

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In Memoriam - Patricia Hudson

--by Rachel Davis

Long-time ADA member since 2006 Patricia Hudson, better known as "Pat", passed away on December 15th from the effects of a long-term illness. Last year Pat relocated from Miami to South Carolina to be closer to her family, and she is survived by her children and grandchildren.

Pat went on many ADA dives over the years, most often known for buddying with her friends Helen Colby and Evelyn Roisman, affectionately known in ADA circles as the "Bobbsey Triplets." She attended the ADA International Dive Trip to Tobago in 2011 and enjoyed many other adventures including traveling to Mexico with her ADA buddies to dive the Cenotes and swim with whale sharks.

In addition to her passion for diving, Pat was an active volunteer with the Sierra Club. She also worked at the Lotus House shelter for women and children in Miami. In lieu of flowers, please help carry on her work by making a donation in her memory to Lotus House.

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6th ADA Scuba Skills Tune Up

Join us for the 6th ADA Scuba Skills Tune Up on May 13, 2017 at AD Barnes Park Pool in Miami

Most dive operators require a refresher course if it's been over a year since you last scuba dived, and most dive shops charge $100-$200 for this course. But if you're an ADA member, you're in luck. One of the top perks of ADA is our annual Scuba Skills Tune-Up refresher course. Here are the details:

When: Saturday, May 13, 2017, 9:00 - 2:00 p.m.

Where: AD Barnes Park Pool, 3401 SW 72 Avenue, Miami, FL 33155

Why?: Skills get rusty, particularly if you skipped a dive season or two. With the passage of time we tend to forget what to do in certain emergency situations. A refresher course allows your mind to be sharp and your reflexes automatic. Therefore, we want to make our mistakes in the pool, not in the ocean. While we're refreshing, it's better to get pesky mistakes or equipment bungles out of the way in the safer pool environment, rather than in the ocean.

There is always something new to learn. Many of our members have reported that no matter how many years they have been diving, they always learn something new at our Scuba Skills Tune Up event. With our Safety Officers presenting on a variety of topics, the chances are very likely that you will learn something new too. Plus we have several different ADA Safety Officers teaching various topics, and each one provides a different perspective. You may learn new tips and tricks from being exposed to a different diving instructor than the one who certified you.

Our Scuba Skills Tune Up can reduce your anxiety. Sharpening your water skills reduces anxiety for the next time you dive in the ocean, allowing for maximum enjoyment. This is because our Scuba Skills Tune Up will remind you what to do in an emergency. Emergency procedures need to be top of mind and instantaneous in the water should they occur. Knowing the sign for out of air can alert your buddy immediately to your predicament and could save your life.

Did you know that new ADA members who join at the event receive a free 2017 membership to ADA at the Scuba Skills Tune Up event with the $25 paid admission? That's $20 off regular price in effect at that time - and you get the course as a bonus. There's no better deal for divers wishing to return to the sport and have a built-in network of ADA buddies to dive with. Plus you can meet new dive buddies at the event. Other safety-conscious divers will also be attending the refresher course so you can meet new friends and fellow diving enthusiasts to dive with in the future. Please note, attendance and completion of the classroom and pool session are required in order to qualify for the free membership offer for new members.

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3rd Annual ADA Dive Cruise Is Ready For Booking

November 13 - 18

--by Daryl Johnson

After a very successful dive cruise in November 2016 we are ready to book the third annual ADA dive cruise which departs on November 13, 2017 on the Crown Princess for 5 nights and six days and goes to Cozumel and Costa Maya for Caribbean diving at its best. It is really easy to do when no flying is involved to get to your destination, and the ship repositions overnight to the next dive location while you are dining, being entertained, watching “Movies under the Stars”, or simply enjoying the voyage. Dan and I have taken several of these and enjoyed outstanding days of diving, gourmet meals, and a terrific cruise experience. It’s also a great way to experience international diving for the first time.

Double occupancy prices vary according to cabin from as low as $549 per person for an interior cabin to $749 for a balcony (on sale as of this writing,) not including the dive excursions which range from $119 to $139 per diver, per day, including all equipment rentals. Our experience has been that if the prices drop (they usually do as the date of the cruise approaches), and you have a deposit down prior to final payment being made, Princess can give you the new rates if you contact them.  So to make sure you get the cabin you want, I urge you to make your deposit now rather than later. Final payment is due August 30, 2017, and I recommend that you wait until then to make the final payment. Oh, and by the way, prices are lower if you want to book more than two to a room (four maximum).  I did one dive cruise with two other divers in an interior cabin with no problems.

An additional benefit of booking the ADA Group trip is the onboard credit that each cabin will receive depending on how many cabins are booked within the group. I strongly encourage you to book directly with our Princess Cruise Planner since using outside agencies can jeopardize the onboard credit for all in the Active Divers group and also makes it more difficult for me to coordinate dive bookings.  So, how simple is it to book this trip? All you have to do is call our Cruise Planner, Karen Bradder at 1-800-901-1172 ext. 41643 and tell her that you want to book the Active Divers Group cruise(voyage 3730, code TPH) and make a deposit. That’s it, no muss, no fuss and you will be ready for an outstanding trip with ADA!! I will coordinate with our cruise planner to get the dive excursions arranged for all ADA divers but be sure and go online and verify that the dives you want are booked on your reservation.

See you onboard!!

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Caribbean Dive Trip to Grenada
July 8-15, 2017
--by Daryl Johnson

This trip is filling up fast! Ten lucky divers have already  booked! Did you know that Grenada is home to the largest wreck in the Caribbean?? Bianca C – Known as the “Titanic of the Caribbean,” this giant ship caught fire in 1961 and sunk in 165-feet of water. Also, there is a lot of variety in the diving including drift diving such as at Fisherman’s Paradise – Located at the southern tip of Grenada, this dive site is where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Caribbean Sea. Frequented by currents, you may drift among schools of chub, spy eagle rays and southern stingrays, watch sea turtles and perhaps see big nurse sharks on almost every dive.


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The Amazing Parrotfish
--by Mo Smith

Parrotfish are not just only an overly abundant colorful fish taking space within the reefs; they are vital in maintaining our reefs and oceans vibrant and healthy.  The colors, patterns, shape, and even sex of the Parrotfish can change as it moves through life phases.  Parrotfish are hermaphroditic, many species begin life as a female to eventually become males.  These fish have behaviors still being studied by biologist attempting to determine purpose and benefits to the species and environment.  They are known to cover themselves at night with a mucous cocoon secreted from an organ located within the head area.  The theory is that the cocoon protects the Parrotfish by concealing their scent against predators and parasites.

A unique feature of the Parrotfish is the mouth, which is formed into a beak similar to an avian parrot.  Its powerful beak allows the fish to scrape food and limestone from the reef.    The limestone is crushed into fine powder by the teeth located in the back of the throat (pharyngeal mill) and eventually excreted as fine sand.  Most of the sand found within the reefs and nearby beaches are created by the Parrotfish limestone digestion cycle.   Parrotfish spend the majority of their time feeding and removing algae, which is in direct competition with the coral reefs for space.  The fish create balance allowing the coral to find new space within the ocean floor to grow.  Without this balance created by the Parrotfish the algae would eventually overwhelm the environment subsequently destroying all coral reefs.  The importance of the parrotfish life cycle success directly correlates with our ocean and reefs success.

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My Favorite Wreck Dive – The San Francisco Maru
--by Dr. Dan Baeza

On February 17 and 18, 1944, the U.S. Navy launched a massive air and surface attack against the Japanese naval station located in Chuuk (a.k.a. Truk) Lagoon in the Caroline Islands. Truk Lagoon is part of the Federated States of Micronesia. The attack was codenamed Operation Hailstone and has been described as the Japanese equivalent of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The Imperial Japanese fleet lost over 250 aircraft and 45 ships.

Today, Truk Lagoon is a peaceful protected harbor approximately 49 by 31 miles across. A few years ago, I, along with several other ADA members went on a dive excursion to Truk Lagoon. Truk is characterized by dozens of wrecked ships, planes, and other war materials. The wrecks are not the clean, sanitized edifices we find in south Florida, but rather ships sunk under the most violent of circumstances. The edges are sharp, there is still live ordnance aboard many of the ships, and the depths are typically 100 feet or more.


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Diving for Contraband
--by Mo Smith

There are many diving styles and certifications but few are as unique as a “Police Diver.” A Police Diver requires multiple technical skills to perform their service to the community in a very extreme and uncomfortable environment.

For centuries vessels have been used to smuggle contraband. In the sixties and seventies drug cartels utilized this form of smuggling with boundless success.  They were able to penetrate the U.S. borders by using the seas as an avenue of transportation with minimal risk. Law Enforcement was tasked to catch and deter the smugglers from penetrating our ocean borders. Realizing their deficiency in this cat and mouse game they partnered up with the military and began learning and improving their interdiction skills along with acquiring exposure to equipment that was at the time unfamiliar to law enforcement but common within our military (radars, sonars, GPS, and faster designed boats).  Law enforcement also recognized that the best equipment in the world was insufficient to accomplish the goal, they needed to expand their skills and focused on improved techniques. Border enforcement personnel needed to learn how to swing the bat. The advanced training included improving pursuit skills, boat operations in all types of environments, intelligence gathering and of course scuba diving skills.


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Crab Cakes with Easy Rémoulade
-- by Roy D. Wasson

I learned this tasty and easy recipe from my sister-in-law Lois Chumbley, who made it for a recent family dinner.  Here are the ingredients:

For the Crab Cakes:

1 pound lump crab meat

¼ cup diced red bell pepper

¼ cup diced green bell pepper

2 green onions, chopped

1 large egg, lightly beaten

½ cup panko crumbs, plus additional for dredging

¼ cup lemon juice (about 2 lemons)

2 tablespoons mayonnaise

2 teaspoons mustard powder

1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Lemon wedges, for garnish


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Hurricane Matthew and the Aftermath
--by Jerry Kosakowski

Hurricane skirted by south Florida on October 6. Yes, yes, I know you are thinking it was a big nothing. I agree. After days of preparation, the storm came and went, never getting close to land. We had our ADA End-of-Season picnic event at the Jetty Pavilion October 8, and I went diving, just a couple days afterwards. The visibility was poor, but I could see the place remained essentially the same.

Not so with the 3 weeks of wind that followed (See photo). I am posed in front of the Jetty Pavilion. I didn’t dive that day, but did manage a dive two days later. The reef was covered with sand. It was totally transformed. The holes the lobsters used to occupy were just not there. Sand covered it all. The ledge was void of life. The sand worked its way underneath the reef and covered most of the coral and rocks. It is a disaster. Hopefully it cleanses itself and returns to a more normal seascape. We’ll see in the next few weeks which usually aren’t very good for the beaches either. But we can hope.

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ADA Youth Diver Program
--by Lenora Bach


Last year, the ADA Board created a Youth Diver Program designed for teens under the age of 18 years old. Cost of membership is just $10. Here is a summary of the requirements for membership:

Requirement- You must already be certified, (restrictions per PADI regulations)

  • Age 10-11 may participate on any ADA dive if accompanied by a parent or guardian
  • Age 12-14 do not need to dive with their parent but must dive with an adult 18 years or older. They will be assigned to an ADA Safety Officer
  • Age 15-17 may dive with any certified diver age 15 or older, including other ADA youth members age 15 or older

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Have You Moved or Changed Email Addresses Lately?

If so, please email or call us with your current information. you may send an email to: Dr. Dan Baeza, Membership Chair at ActiveDiversInfo@gmail.com. You can also call Dan at 954-260-8225 and leave a message with your new contact information.

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Newsletter Delivery Options

Want your newsletter delivered via snail-mail? Contact the webmaster and request a printed copy. Be sure to put "ADA Newsletter" in the subject.

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ADA T-Shirts For Sale

Show your pride in the best dive club anywhere! Sizes small, medium, large, xlarge, xxlarge. Some tank tops available also. All shirts are $10 each. CALL LON AT 305-251-4975 AND PLACE YOUR ORDER TODAY!. Lon will deliver it to you on your next dive

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Jawfish

--by Jerry Kosakowski

You have all seen them. I think they are the cutest little fish in the ocean. I mean, they stick their heads out and stare at you and then disappear. Do you know what I am talking about?


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ADA Guidelines and Policies

ADA RULES & REGULATIONS FOR ALL ADVANCED DIVES
(DEPTHS OVER 60’) ADA DIVERS MUST:

  1. Be current (dive activity within the previous 3 months).
  2. Have the approval of an ADA Safety Officer.
  3. Have a minimum of 25 logged dives.
  4. Carry an alternate air source (octopus), time keeping device and depth gauge

IMPORTANT WEATHER INFORMATION

Before departing for the dive site, confirm weather conditions with Lon at (305) 251-4975 or with the designated Safety Officer. It is the responsibility of the member to call. Because of the large numbers of divers involved we are not able call you with weather information. For morning dives, call between 6 and 10 p.m. the night before the dive. For afternoon dives, call between 9 and 10 a.m. the morning of the dive

HOW TO MAKE DIVE RESERVATIONS

  1. Check this newsletter or the annual calendar for upcoming dives.
  2. Call Lon at (305) 251-4975 or via email at lon@diverlon.com to make a reservation. If via email, you will receive a notification whether space is available. Please do not leave requests on his answering machine, the trip may be full.
  3. We will hold your reservation for four (4) days from the date you call. If we do not receive payment within four days, your space may be given to other members. If you wish to confirm receipt, call Lon.
  4. Ask for details about the trip when you call. Otherwise, details will be given when you call for a weather check. (See “Important Weather Information”)
  5. Make your check payable to ACTIVE DIVERS ASSOCIATION, not to any individual, and mail to:
Jerry Kosakowski 
298 NW 83 Lane 
Coral Springs FL 33071-7439
You may also pay online via PayPal on the "Dive Schedule" page.

ADA GUIDELINES FOR COMPUTER ASSISTED DIVING

  1. Members using dive computers may extend their time 10 underwater minutes beyond the time allowed by the tables.
  2. Computer assisted dives must be well within the NO DECOMPRESSION LIMITS
  3. Members should understand and follow the manufacturer’s recommendations.
  4. If a computer diver is buddyed with a diver using the tables, both must follow the tables.
  5. If a buddy-team is using dis-similar computers, both must follow the more conservative readings

ADA TRIP CANCELLATION INSURANCE

ADA has created a unique concept in local diving: NO FAULT INSURANCE!! For an additional $5.00, per person, per local dive trip, members can eliminate the worry of losing their dive fees because of an unforeseen change of plans. If for any reason you are unable to attend a local dive for which you are scheduled and have paid the insurance, ADA will credit your dive fee to another date. The $5.00 insurance is  non-transferable and non-refundable. When you make a reservation, ask for dive trip cancellation insurance.

IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM THE SAFETY OFFICERS’ COMMITTEE

All members are reminded to read the “Rules & Guidelines for Diving Activities” you received with your membership package. Number 16 states, “All divers must be present for the pre-dive briefing”. If the diver is not present for the entire briefing, diving privileges may be revoked for that dive. Please plan to arrive on time - or better yet - a bit early. We thank you and appreciate your cooperation.

CANCELLATION AND REFUND POLICY FOR LOCAL DIVE TRIPS

Because of our contractual agreements with our service agents - dive shops and boat captains, we must notify them - usually seven days in advance - of the final number of spaces we are paying for. Thus, if our members cancel less than seven days in advance, we regret that NO REFUND OR CREDIT can be given, unless trip cancellation insurance has been purchased at the time of the dive trip payment (see next news article!)

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