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Old 24-04-2015, 08:24   #1
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Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

Hi folks,

I live/work in Boston, and would love to try sailing this season. Never done it before, although I've been on a charter sail boats quite a few times.

I think a yacht club is the right way for me to "dip my toes" into it, and there seems to be a good bunch of them in the Boston/MA seashore area. I was wondering if someone can recommend a club that:
1. Has a good reputation
2. Has good hands on training program
3. Has boats of several sizes
4. Would allow to bring my family for a day cruise (SO and two kids)
3. Inexpensive (under $4K per season).

Among other things that I would "like to have" in a club" are:

Ability to do sailing in the evening: my office is at the Boston waterfront, so If I get out of the office at 4:00pm, I would love to get be on the water at 5:00pm and have at least an hour or two for sailing/practice.

I guess that's all I can think about for now...

Much appreciate recommendations, personal experiences suggestions.

Thanks, Paul.
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Old 24-04-2015, 08:38   #2
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

You don't want a yacht club - you want a sailing club. Sailing clubs usually include free use of their boats with membership and a training program. It's how my partner and I got our start here in Puget Sound.
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Old 24-04-2015, 08:45   #3
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

Thank you Mycroft,

Yes, I guess I am looking for a sailing club recommendation around Boston area...

Thanks, Paul.
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Old 24-04-2015, 08:53   #4
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
You don't want a yacht club - you want a sailing club. Sailing clubs usually include free use of their boats with membership and a training program. It's how my partner and I got our start here in Puget Sound.

+1

And also... walk the docks in your area, and meet sailors. Weekends you would find lots on the docks. Talk to as many as you can and tell them of your enthusiasm to learn. Tell them you will day crew iif they will teach you. Heck... offer to wash down there boat for a lesson or two. Do this first by yourself. Don't just show up with the whole "fam" and say... "we want to go sailing". When I was a teenager and had "the dream", I haunted the docks like a boat rat. Met lots of people and eventually ended up with more offers than I could manage.

Cheers!
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Old 25-04-2015, 09:09   #5
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

SV Sailfish outlines the way Dennis Conner got started... just by hanging around the docks. Especially on regatta/beer can days, boats need last-minute crew for no-shows or unexpected heavier Wx. You'll get exposed to a variety of boats and their riggings, people, and approaches, for sure. Had a friend who rode with Lowell North this way. Good luck!
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Old 25-04-2015, 09:13   #6
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Paul.
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Old 25-04-2015, 09:35   #7
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

I recall reading several articles, in different publications, that featured a sailing club that was very highly recommended. I think it was on the Charles, but don't know for sure. Would think that some Bostonian amongst us could fill this in.
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Old 25-04-2015, 10:25   #8
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prelius View Post
Thank you Mycroft,

Yes, I guess I am looking for a sailing club recommendation around Boston area...

Thanks, Paul.
When I started I did Boston Harbor Sailing Club. They have most of their boats in Rowes Wharf and a few up in Salem. They have many different plans.
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Old 25-04-2015, 11:00   #9
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

I also started at Boston Harbor Sailing Club. Looks like there is also another choice.

Boston Sailing - Schools Lessons Certifications - Boston Harbor Sailing Club - Sailboat Racing Moorings Rentals Charters

Boston Sailing Center: Sailing School, Sailing Club - Lessons, Memberships, Racing, Cruising, Charters, Instruction
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Old 26-04-2015, 20:18   #10
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

I think Boston Sailing Center is the one I read about. No personal experience, though. Best of luck.

Cheers,
Tim
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Old 26-04-2015, 21:37   #11
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

Another from boston harbor sailing club, now cruising, or rather working on my engine, in FL. You have a number of options, walking the docks in Boston isn't one of them however as no one who owns a boat uses it in Boston, so you won't see them on the weekend, and there's not really any accessible docks where you work, though you might get lucky at the marina in Charlestown. All entries are password protected though so it's not like you can walk up to a boat.
BHSC is a great start. Mark Healy really drives the price point down which is nice for a first timer, but it shows on the boats. Best location in the harbor by far though as you're the closest to the harbor islands and also close to south station if the family is coming in. For your first season, just get the $400 sonar membership and sail the hell out of it. Go to the social sails on Tuesday and meet other sailors. Join the online crew list once you're a member and score some invites on bigger boats from more experienced sailors.
BSC (boston sailing center) is also well liked by members. It's more expensive but you get nicer boats, an extra week of vacation time, and a lot more planned/structured social activity.
Then there are the smaller clubs like courageous, piers park, etc. Don't know much about these, but believe they have smaller boats.


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Old 20-05-2015, 13:41   #12
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Re: Would love to dip the toes.. :-)

A quick way to get on the water (for free or close to it) is to get in touch with the head of a local PHRF fleet. Many sailors who race in the fleet are usually in need of crew - whether you know what you're doing or not. Especially on windy nights, skippers are always looking for extra bodies to be ballast. From experience, I've had several green crew members on board my boat for racing and even when they were solely there for weight purposes, they learned a ton.
Feel free to message me if you need help finding contact information!


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