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.

2017 Sailing Programs

Adult Sailing (ages 15 and older)

Community SailingBeginner: For 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.

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.

Half-day classes:
Sundays, April 23 – May 21 and September 10 – October 29
Beginner: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Intermediate: 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Members: $245 • Non-members: $275

Full-day classes:
Beginner
9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday, June 24 – 25, July 15 – 16, July 29 – 30, August 12 – 13
Intermediate
9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday, July 8 – 9
Members: $245 • Non-members: $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.

  • Tuesdays, April 18-May 23, 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesdays, April 19-May 24, 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Tuesdays, September 5-October 24, 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesdays, September 6-October 25, 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.

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

New! Summer Evening Sailing

We are offering adults and families the opportunity to drop in to the Community Sailing Center at Mystic Seaport to sail JY15 boats on the beautiful Mystic River. While a sailing instructor will be present to assist as needed, this is not a formal class and some prior sailing experience is required. PFDs are available to use or you may bring your own.

  • Wednesdays, June 28-August 16, 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
  • Thursdays, June 29-August 17, 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.

$10 per session per family. You can register and pay in advance by calling 860.572.5322, ext. 1, emailing reservations@mysticseaport.org; or pay with cash on-site on a drop-in basis. Free for Skippers member level and above.

Youth Sailing (ages 8-14)

There is no better place to get out on the water than Mystic Seaport. No matter what your skill level, it’s easy to find the right class for you. Beginner youth classes build confidence in boat handling through repeated on-the-water practice. The basics of water safety and wind, boat control using the main sheet and tiller, and sailing maneuvers
such as tacking and jibing are taught by experienced, certified instructors. Intermediate youth 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, rules of the road as well as upwind and downwind sailing.

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 19-23, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 3-7, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 10-14, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 24-28, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 31-August 4, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 14-18, from 8:30-11:30 a.m.

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, June 19-23, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, June 26-30, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 17-21, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 24-28, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, July 31-August 4, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 7-11, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.
  • Monday-Friday, August 14-18, from 12:30-3:30 p.m.

Registration – member: $165 / non-member: $185. Please call 860-572-5322, ext. 1 to register.

Afterschool 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.

  • Thursdays, April 20-May 25, from 4-6 p.m.
  • Thursdays, September 14-November 2, from 4-6 p.m.

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

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

Get the best of both worlds with this unique camp where campers spend the morning focusing on the history of the
Coogan Farm with the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, and the afternoon sailing at Mystic Seaport. Time at Coogan Farm and the Nature Center will include exploration, hands-on activities at the farm, and participation in the Giving Garden. Campers will eat lunch before traveling to Mystic Seaport where they will learn how to sail in JY15 sailboats (weather permitting).

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 12-16, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • July 10-14, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Registration — member (either organization): $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)

This 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 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 26-30
  • July 17-21
  • August 7-11

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 JY15. All equipment, except foul-weather gear, is provided. If you already have a personal floatation device (PFD), please bring your own.

  • Saturday-Sunday, July 22-23, from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
  • Saturday-Sunday, August 5-6, 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)

Our homeschool sailing class will combine on the water sailing instruction with marine science activities, depending on the weather conditions. 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. Marine science activities will include seining, squid dissection, plankton tows, water chemistry, and watershed ecosystems. Tuesday classes are geared for beginning sailors and Thursday classes are geared for beginner/intermediate sailors.

  • Tuesdays, April 18– May 23, from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Thursdays, April 20 – May 25, from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Tuesdays, September 5 – October 24, from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Thursdays, September 7 – October 26, from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.

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