Buffalo Harbor Sailing Club to offer four-week introduction to sailing program

Have you always wanted to learn to sail or just get out and enjoy our spectacular waterways? Here’s a chance to do both, as the Buffalo Harbor Sailing Club (BHSC) will once again offer Discover Buffalo Sailing — An Introduction to Sailing, a four-week program that explains basic sailing skills through a structured program of onshore chalk-talks and hands-on experience on the water. The first session will be held on Saturday, May 19; additional sessions will be held on the next three consecutive Saturdays in May and June. A required orientation session takes place on April 19 and interested participants must pre-register online by April 13.

BHSC boat owners volunteer their equipment and their time to give participants the best possible experience. Mentors and seasoned crew members assist as the program demonstrates how the wind and the sails move the vessel through the water, teaching basic boat handling and safety.

No sailing experience is necessary to enroll in the program. Participants must be at least 16 years old (and accompanied by parent if under 18) and agile enough to easily move around a boat in motion.

Cost: $60 (includes one-year $50 BHSC membership and $10 materials fee). Your membership entitles you to participate in racing and other special events offered by BHSC through the rest of the year.

Orientation: April 19, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Obersheimer Sailor Supply, 1884 Niagara St., Buffalo. This orientation session will outline program expectations, recommended equipment and boat assignments. It is also a “meet the skipper” night, as all participants and fellow crew members, including club mentors, will be introduced. (You can still sign up for the program if you cannot make the orientation.)

Sessions: Sessions will run on four consecutive Saturdays:
May 19: 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
May 26, June 2 & June 9: 8:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Each session will consist of a 45-minute dockside chalk talk and 1.5-hour sail, weather permitting, on your assigned boat. In inclement weather, a dockside lesson will be substituted. Each boat will have a mentor and a minimum of two seasoned crew members. Participants will be actively involved in sailing during each session. All sessions begin at RCR Yachts and Marina, 284 Fuhrmann Blvd., Buffalo.

Registration: Register online or contact Patrick Weisansal II, program coordinator, at pweisansal@gmail.com for more information.

The Buffalo Harbor Sailing Club is the center of racing on Lake Erie in Buffalo. Established in 1977, the club is 501(c)3 non-profit association operated by a volunteer board of directors who reflect the wishes of the membership. The BHSC does not have a clubhouse or docks. Their only asset is the committee boat that oversees the racecourse. The Buffalo Harbor Sailing Club supports the initiatives and rules of US Sailing, the governing body of sailboat racing in the United States. For more information, visit http://www.buffaloharborsailingclub.org.

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