If you want to learn to sail on Lemon Bay, you’d better sign up now

■ BY SUE ERWIN

The Englewood Sailing Association is partnering with the YMCA to offer a summer sailing camp for adults.

The four-day course is scheduled to take place on Saturday, July 20, Sunday, July 21, Saturday, July 27 and Sunday, July 28. The class is for those 18 years and older.

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Come learn to sail or refresh your skills with experienced sailing instructors.

The only prerequisites are the ability to swim and the desire to sail.

Englewood Sailing Association President John Riehl said the organization has been offering the adult classes since 2011. A fall and spring course took place each year.

“Shortly thereafter we added a summer class, which runs over two consecutive weekends to accommodate working adults,” Riehl said.

The classes normally have between 10 and 12 students. A waiting list is available in case of last minute cancellations, depending on the availability of instructors.

“We maintain a one instructor per two students ratio, which ensures personalized attention for every student,” Riehl said.

Students start in pairs on one of the six 14’ training boats (either a Hobie Holder 14 or an RS Quest), with an instructor in the bow of the boat while they’re out on the water. Most students are able to sail without an on-board instructor by the third day of the class. Students do not need any prior sailing or even boating experience.

“Over the years we’ve introduced over 170 adults to the sport of sailing, and many of them have become volunteers with Englewood Sailing Association, helping to teach both adults and youth how to sail,” Riehl said.

The organization also has a 17’ sailboat, which is very accommodating for adults with knee or back problems. Sailing is a mobile water sport, and to avoid capsizing, the sailor must move to the side of the boat from which the wind is blowing. This boat is a bit sturdier and easier for those with mobility issues to navigate.

Englewood Sailing Association, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 2002. A spin-off from the Lemon Bay Rag Haulers founded in 1990, the association offers youth and adult sailing programs in cooperation with the Englewood YMCA.

Classes will be held at the Englewood Sailing Association Sailing Center located at Indian Mound Park, 210 Winson Ave. in Englewood. The cost is $195 per person, and registration is open at the Englewood SKY Family YMCA or online at englewoodsailing.org. Class size is limited so sign up soon.

ESA instructors are certified through U.S. Sailing and trained in CPR and first aid.

A four-day snowbird sailing camp is being planned from November 4 through November 7 this fall.

For more information, call (941) 681-8190, visit englewoodsailing.org or send an email to info@englewoodsailing.org.

 

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