Summer Sailing Classes
Offer Lifetime of Adventure

Water Ways
Honolulu Star Bulletin (5/30/98)
By Ray Pendleton

Hey, parents. Will your kids be just hanging out or cruising the mall for the next three months, now that school is almost out for the summer?

Wouldn't you rather see them get involved in a squeaky-clean, outdoor activity that challenges their minds as well as their bodies, and gives them experiences they will remember forever?

I am talking about sailing the winds of paradise. Learning how to become one with the wind and the sea.

It might come as a surprise to some, but the three major yacht clubs on O`ahu - Waikiki, Hawaii and Kaneohe - all have junior sailing classes which are open to the public. In fact, the nonaffiliated sailors often outnumber those with parents who are members.

Perhaps not surprisingly, many of Hawaii's great collegiate and Olympic sailors have come out of these programs.

All three clubs provide the boats - generally El Toros, Toppers and Lasers - and teach water safety and knots and rigging along with their sailing instruction. They have only one prerequisite: all students must know how to swim.

At the Waikiki Yacht Club - located at the Diamond Head end of Ala Moana Park - Junior Sailing Director Guy Fleming will begin his "Sail Into Summer" program's first three-week session on June 8. The classes are open to all youth from 9 to 18 years old, and are divided into Beginning Sailing, Teen Novice, Intermediate and Advanced Racers.

"During the first several days in our program, students will spend time working one-on-one with an instructor and then gradually shift to being taught in a group," Fleming said. "Within a week, most students are able to sail unassisted."

Fleming can be reached at 955-4405 for those with questions about enrollment.

Scott Melander heads Hawaii Yacht Club's junior sailing program and has announced his summer sailing classes will begin on June 8 as well.

Located in the Ewa end of the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor parking lot, the HYC also offers three, three-week sessions, with morning or afternoon classes for students ages 8 through 18. Classes are divided into novice sailing, intermediate sailing and sail racing.

"All of our classes are taught by instructors certified by the U.S. Sailing Association and the American Red Cross," Melander said. "And our priorities are learning to sail safely, while having fun and gaining knowledge."

Call Melander at 949-7547 to enroll or for more information.

On the windward side of O`ahu, Kaneohe Yacht Club's junior sailing director, Jesse Andrews, will kick off the club's summer program on June 15, with the first of three three-week sessions.

The KYC junior sailing program is similar to the others in that the classes are divided into preteens and teens, and novice, intermediate and advanced sailors, but there is one difference. A "Sea Urchin" class is offered on a once-a-week basis for children aged 6 to 8 as an introduction to sailing and an instructor is provided to sail with each student.

"A junior who participates in the program will experience some of the best sailing in the world," Andrews noted, "and the memories will last a lifetime."

Anyone interested in registration or information should call Andrews at 247-4121.

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