Here is our annual roundup of sailing programs for kids. Each of these classes – at yacht clubs and community sailing programs and on boats big and small – is open to the public.Read more
by PETER RUGG
NESS Hosting a Safety at Sea Seminar
Fishers Island Yacht Club in Fishers Island, NY has teamed up with the Storm Trysail Foundation to start a new junior overnight race. The inaugural event will start Friday, August 10, 2012. Each boat (27 to 45 feet) will be crewed by at least five junior sailors ages 13 to 18 and have one or two adult safety advisors aboard. The course will be 80 to 100 miles, touring either Block Island Sound via Point Judith, RI and Montauk, NY or Long Island Sound from Seaflower Reef to Stratford Shoal and back, depending on wind and conditions.Read more
A community sailing program in New London, CT that began with eight students now introduces hundreds of kids to the sport every season. “My Mom, Carolyn Leuze, and I started New London Community Boating 14 years ago,” said Katie Bradford, the organization’s President. “At an ECSA [Eastern Connecticut Sailing Association] meeting, Bill Squier [a Past ECSA Offshore Chairman] asked, ‘How can we get more kids – and therefore crew – into sailing?’ So, Judy Gibbs [an ECSA Director], Mom and I had lunch and the rest is success. The first year was in boats borrowed from Thames Yacht Club. We got the kids through a variety of charitable agencies in New London, from the public schools and the Recreation Department.”Read more
The SHYC Sailing Foundation in Stonington, CT recently marked a decade of community programs with the announcement of ambitious development plans and a new name: “New England Science & Sailing” (NESS). The independent, non-profit Foundation offers unique programs including marine science, sailing, kayaking, windsurfing, surfing, paddle boarding and fishing for students age 4 and up, and makes them available to anyone.Read more
by DAVID L. WALDO & ALICIA MARTORELLA
The WaterFront Center (WFC) in Oyster Bay, NY provides a unique opportunity for youth ages 6 through 18 to enjoy the marine environment. Through a variety of activities, WFC Juniors learn about, explore and care for the ocean, creating lasting memories which we believe heighten their awareness and appreciation for the world around them.
by MAREK ZALESKI
As they say, “there is a first time for everything,” and over the course of the last year I have had many “firsts.” From my first event in the 49er class to my first Olympic level Laser event, it has been a tough, but rewarding, year.
After winning their respective classes at US Sailing’s ISAF (International Sailing Federation) Youth World Qualifier, hosted by Alamitos Bay Yacht Club in Long Beach, CA in January, four Long Island Sound sailors have been selected to represent the USA in the International 420 class at the ISAF Youth World Championship, which will be held July 12-21 in Dublin Bay, Ireland.Read more
by SUSAN CHADWICK
Ocean Classroom Foundation (OCF) recently said congratulations to 23 high school students from Proctor Academy, as they graduated from OCF’s nine-week long Discovery High School program. They boarded the historic schooner Harvey Gamage in September, leaving Gloucester, MA, their families, and their “normal” school environment. In exchange, they received the adventure of a lifetime – traveling more than 3,000 miles to the Caribbean, gaining invaluable maritime knowledge, and learning just how strong one needs to be when contending with the unpredictable seas.
by MARGUERITE KOEHLER
This fall over 40 kids did just that; they came down to the Din-ghy Shop in Amityville, NY and raked masts instead of leaves at Fall Series XIV. For six consecutive Sundays from September 18 to October 30, kids from all over (some as far away as Tred Avon Yacht Club in Maryland and the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club in Bermuda) raced on the Great South Bay while their parents chased them around the racecourse in a kayak or watched from “parent beach.” Many had the chance to learn about sail-ing, while others perfected their starting prowess on a line with 30-plus boats. But each sailor was challenged by the conditions on the water and many made new and lasting friendships. My Dad, Jim Koehler, owns the Dinghy Shop, and every fall since my sisters and I started sailing he’s opened up our beach to host what has become the largest youth sailing series in the nation. It’s something that’s really special to him.Read more
by HOWIE MCMICHAEL
The Storm Trysail Foundation and the Larchmont Yacht Club teamed up to run the world’s largest college regatta on October 8 & 9, with 400 collegiate sailors competing in the 2011 Intercollegiate Offshore Regatta on a fleet of 47 boats ranging from 35 to 44 feet. School teams came from across the country to race in the placid waters of Long Island Sound off Larchmont, NY. Three light air races were sailed on Saturday and the race committee started two races on Sunday, but had to abandon each after the wind shifted too much. After the second abandonment the wind died away to nothing and never returned.Read more