Miramar was approached by a maritime camp located at the Knights of Columbus to arrange a sailing program for their campers. After mulling over the costs and benefits of hosting a youth sailing program, we decided to give the program a chance. Our reasoning was that this may provide an opportunity as a feeder program for young members or their parents. Twelve kids attended and a counselor, 9 boys and 3 girls, ranging in age from 9 to 14.
We arranged 4 Ensigns as training vessels: Celest, Lucky Us!, Amanda Rose and The Bees Knee’s. Maria G. created a great power point program with handouts for the kids covering points of sailing, nomenclature, knots etc. Our volunteer captains were Leon, Barbara, Marc and David. Special thanks to our crews, who made sure no boat went out without a captain and crew: Tony, Glen, Maria S., Andrew, Victor, Richard, Sara, Christin and Andrea.
The kids seemed to be ok with the book stuff but occasionally got fidgety (i.e., throwing water at each other etc), but the days were extremely hot. The last day we raced the boats and the winds got pretty heavy. We were so impressed with the way the youngsters handled the boats, how steady they were at the helm, their clean tacks and how very much they enjoyed the strong winds and big seas. We got an extremely positive reaction from the camp with the kids saying it was great.
There were many plus factors to the program but it took 14 volunteers and a lot of effort so we will have to evaluate what to do next year.