Community Sailing

Get out on the historic Mystic River and learn how to sail from Mystic Seaport's experienced instructors.

There’s no better place to get out on the water than Mystic Seaport. No matter your age or skill level, it’s easy to find the right sailing class for you. Our junior and family programs are for beginner and intermediate sailors using JY15s. Competent swimmers ages 15 and older may enroll in adult classes.

Mystic Seaport is an accredited US Sailing Center by US Sailing and classes are taught by experienced sailors who have been certified by the US Sailing Association.

2016 Sailing Programs

Adult Sailing (ages 15 and older)

Beginner

Community SailingFor those who have never sailed and have always wanted to learn. You’ll be introduced to the theory of sailing (why and how a boat sails), basic sailing and gear terminology, rigging and de-rigging a Dyer Dhow, equipment stowage and care, personal safety, knots, safety on the dock and on the water, points of sail, small boat handling, basic rules of the road, capsizing and running aground procedures.

  • Sundays, April 3-May 22, from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
  • Saturday & Sunday, June 25-26, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Saturday & Sunday, July 16-17, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Saturday & Sunday, July 30-31, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Saturday & Sunday, August 13-14, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Sundays, September 25-November 13, from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Registration — member: $245 / non-member: $275

Intermediate

If you are comfortable sailing a small boat alone and have mastered the basic beginner skills, this course is for you. Start with a review of terminology and points of sail then move to learning about safety, sail trim, and proper boat balance. Practice leaving and landing at docks, picking up moorings, man overboard, inland rules of the road, gear failure, wind and current, headers and lifters. Many guided hands-on drills are run designed to improve your boat handling skills.

  • Sundays, April 3-May 22, from 1:30-4:30 p.m.
  • Saturday & Sunday, August 13-14, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Sundays, September 25-November 13, from 1:30-4:30 p.m.

Registration — member: $245 / non-member: $275

Women’s Sailing

This class is for women who have never sailed and have always wanted to learn. You will build confidence in boat handling through repeated on-the-water practice, and will learn the basics of water safety and wind, boat control using the main sheet and tiller, and sailing maneuvers such as tacking and jibing.
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  • Tuesdays, April 5-May 24, 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Thursdays, April 7-May 26, from 9:30-12 p.m.
  • Thursdays, September 22-November 3, from 9:30-12 p.m.

Registration — member: $175 / non-member: $200

Youth Sailing (ages 8-14)

Beginner

These classes build confidence in boat handling through repeated on-the-water practice. Your child will learn the basics of water safety and wind, boat control using the main sheet and tiller, and sailing maneuvers such as tacking and jibing.

  • Monday-Friday, June 20-24, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, June 27-July 1, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 4-8, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 11-15, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 18-22, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 25-29, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 1-5, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 8-12, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 15-19, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.

Registration — member: $165 / non-member: $185

Intermediate

These classes refine the basic sailing skills by learning more about how a sailboat reacts to wind and water currents. Sailing savvy is increased through discussions on safety, rule of the road, and upwind and downwind sailing.

  • Monday-Friday, July 4-8, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 18-22, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 1-5, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 15-19, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.

Registration — member: $165 / non-member: $185

Youth Afterschool Community Sailing Program (ages 8-14)

This class is for both beginning sailors as well as those who have some sailing experience. Students will build confidence in rigging and boat handling using both JY15s and Dyer Dhows, refine basic sailing skills, and learn how a sailboat reacts to wind and water currents. If there is inclement weather, students will participate in fun, hands-on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) activities related to sailing. Mystic Seaport’s sailing instructors are certified in US Sailing’s REACH program, a curriculum that integrates STEM into the sport of sailing.

  • Thursdays, April 7-May 26, from 4-6 p.m.
  • Thursdays, September 22-November 3, from 4-6 p.m.

Registration — member: $165 / non-member: $185

Farm and Sea Summer Day Camp (ages 8-14)

During this summer day camp, hosted in partnership with the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, campers will spend the morning learning about the Nature Center’s Coogan Farm through exploration and hands-on activities. Campers will then eat lunch and go to Mystic Seaport where they will learn how to sail on JY15 sailboats.

Pre-camp daycare is available at the Nature Center from 8:15-9 a.m. Drop off is at Coogan Farm and pick up is at Mystic Seaport.

  • June 13-17, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • July 11-15, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Registration — member: $350 / non-member: $400

Register for camp through Mystic Seaport. Register for before-camp hours through the Nature Center (860.536.1216).

Mystic River Adventure Summer Day Camp (ages 9-12)

Back by popular demand, this one-of-a-kind joint camp with Mystic Aquarium has campers at the Aquarium in the morning (8:30 a.m.-12 p.m.), where they will learn about the animals and habitats of the Mystic River and Long Island Sound. After lunch, campers will travel to Mystic Seaport for a sailing adventure (1-4 p.m.). This program will provide your child the unique opportunity to see the Mystic River from above and below.

  • June 20-25
  • July 25-29
  • August 8-12

Registration — member: $375 / non-member: $425. Register through Mystic Aquarium: 860.572.5955, ext. 520.

Family Sailing

Family community sailing at Mystic Seaport is designed for children and their parents or grandparents to learn the basics of sailing together in a fun and friendly environment. Classes encourage and promote sailing activities the whole family can enjoy. Certified instructors are experienced in teaching all age groups and share their love of the water and years of sailing experience through personal, hands-on instruction.

Children must be at least 8 years of age and accompanied by a parent or guardian at all times. For safety concerns, only one adult and one child will be paired in any vessel. Classes are taught in JY15s. All equipment, except foul-weather gear, is provided. If you already have a personal floatation device (PFD), please bring your own.

  • Saturday-Sunday, July 9-10, from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
  • Saturday-Sunday, July 23-24, from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
  • Saturday-Sunday, August 6-7, from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Registration — member: $275 / non-member: $325 (includes one adult and one child)

Homeschool Sailing (ages 8-14)

This class is for both beginning sailors as well as those who have some sailing experience. Students will build confidence in rigging and boat handling using both JY15s and Dyer Dhows, refine basic sailing skills, and learn how a sailboat reacts to wind and water currents. If there is inclement weather, students will participate in fun, hands-on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) activities related to sailing. Mystic Seaport’s sailing instructors are certified in US Sailing’s REACH program, a curriculum that integrates STEM into the sport of sailing.

  • Wednesdays, April 6-May 25, from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Wednesdays, September 21-November 2, from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.

Registration — member: $165 / non-member $185