“I tried sailing last summer at Portland Yacht Club after a friend told me I should try it. I loved it. It’s so much fun,” said Emma Cole, a Falmouth High School freshman, this afternoon at SailMaine on the Munjoy Hill waterfront. Emma was eating a lunch from crock pots prepared by parents of the sailors before she agreed to talk about sailing. Many of the parents were at the second Regatta of the spring season on this sunny, 50 degree day in Portland. Jessica, Emma’s mother, said that her daughter is a competitive swimmer who loves “all things water.”
Today was the second Regatta in a series of them for high school sailors that began last weekend and runs through the end of May said Maggie Robinson, parent coordinator for the Falmouth High School Sailing team and wife of Chris Robinson, who founded SailMaine back in 1996.
Regatta sailors were racing in a fleet of new 420s – 13.8 ft., centerboard fiberglass boats purchased by SailMaine following a $250,000. fundraising campaign. The fleet was purchased from the manufacturer WhiteCap in Massachusetts according to Chris Robinson who was watching the Regatta in which his children were sailing.
For many years now, SailMaine, a non-profit has been working to get local children on the water. Sailing is a great sport that builds character as sailors learn teamwork, independence, self-reliance and a love for their environment according to its literature. The program offers something for every child – regardless of skill level. SailMaine’s mission is to provide affordable access to the water through community sailing and educational programming.
There are sailing programs for juniors as well as adults. Adult programs are available for you if you’ve never, ever been on a sailboat in your life or have “sailed the seven seas.” If you are retired and have the time, SailMaine has the skilled instructors to make a dream come true for you!
For more information, please call (207) 772-7245. SailMaine.org
(note: By the way, if you are interested in reading a truly funny book about sailing along the northeast coast – from Long Island Sound in New York to Boothbay Harbor, this blogger recommends you check out – “Innocents at Sea,” by James McCracken, in paperback. It’s available at Print Bookstore, 273 Congress Street and Longfellow Books, 1 Monument Way, Portland. My parents sailed and cruised for more than 20 years, only in wooden boats, before sophisticated navigational equipment was available. “Innocents” was originally published by “The Reader’s Digest” in hardcover and condensed in the magazine in 1976. More recently it was republished in paperback by Sue Gold, of Desktop Publishing, Saco.)