By Kasey Commander, NESS Director of Marketing & Communications

New England Science & Sailing (NESS), based in Stonington, CT, has brought hundreds of ocean lovers together through competitive surfing and beach cleanups for the past twelve years. The 13th Annual Catch a Curl Youth Surf Classic & Beach Cleanup is scheduled for 9am – 3pm on Saturday, September 21 at Westerly Town Beach, in Westerly, RI. Registration opens July 22.



In 2022, 70 surfers entered the classic and collected over 77 pounds of marine debris. Thanks to a long list of sponsors, Catch a Curl demonstrates NESS’s commitment to healthy marine environments, marine science, and adventure sports education.

Some of that comes from community events such as this one, local summer programs, and sailing lessons. But most of the effort happens through NESS’s accredited, nationally recognized, and award-winning marine science and ocean-based STEM curriculum that provides hands-on, experiential learning in classrooms and field experiences throughout the year.

For example, middle and high school students can discover the science of waves in different forms (radio, X-ray, light, sound, and more) and work together to build a model to help demonstrate the anatomy and function of a wave.

By putting that knowledge to the test and getting in the water to surf, students then learn how to predict, select, and judge waves while gaining safety knowledge, an understanding of weather and waves, and board-riding abilities! NESS students also learn how to communicate and work together to problem-solve real-world scenarios, while finding the confidence to try something new.

“Our work at NESS allows thousands of students to discover their connection to the ocean through education programs and community events,” says Nina Quaratella, NESS Director of Programs. “Catch a Curl is unique because it allows families, friends, and community members to experience time on the water together, while promoting healthy marine environments.” For more information, visit ■

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