>Olympic Medalists… At BTR, that is.

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CGC MAPLE returned home to Sitka after a week long all-hands training in Juneau, AK. Buoy Tender Roundup (BTR), is an opportunity to bring together buoy tenders in the Coast Guard’s Seventeenth District to provide training to the crew. It is also a time to build camaraderie amongst the crews and their respective cutters. Because of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, only five black hulls were able to attend the 2010 Round-Up. Cutters MAPLE, SPAR, HICKORY, ANTHONY PETIT, and ELDERBERRY all made the trip to Juneau to participate in the training.

On August 4, Coast Guard Day, CGC MAPLE took a break from training and got to express their competitive side and participate in BTR Olympics. The events during the day allow the crews from each unit to show off their talents when it comes to working buoys and aids to navigation. The 2o10 events included a chain pull, tug-o-war, a survival suit swim, precision boom spotting, the infamous heat n’ beat, and halibut cook-off between cutter galley crews.

CGC MAPLE placed first in the boom spot thanks to BOSN Chris Sage’s skillful maneuvering tactics and SN Patrick Smith’s expert crane operating, which successfully maneuvered a 5 gallon bucket of water through an obstacle course on the buoy deck. FS2 Brittnay Smith had a strong showing in the Halibut Cook-off as CGC MAPLE placed second with her famous halibut pizza. Throughout the entire week, Tripler Army Medical Center hosted a blood drive to benefit American troops serving overseas. As a prize for the cutter with the most crew participation, the Medical Center staff awarded a Hawaiian shark-tooth plaque. Despite MAPLE’s best efforts, they placed second behind CGC ELDERBERRY.
Like the cherry on top of a sundae, the week closed out with a bang as the Commandant of the Coast Guard, Admiral Papp, presented awards for the competition. He also recognized three Coastguardsmen for their outstanding performance, one of whom was our very own EM2 Joshua Carnaghi.
As MAPLE pulled into Sitka on Monday, they said goodbye to LT Andy Passic. LT Passic, who served as Executive Officer onboard MAPLE for the past two years, did a fantastic job and will be truly missed. However, crewmembers welcome his successor LT Collin Bronson, with open arms and look forward to sailing with him.

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