Welcome to the board! I live in Indianapolis, so I'm familiar with what you're about to attempt. BTW, my wife and I looked at a 54 ft. Hunter
on Kentucky Lake a couple of months ago (Kentucky Lake is part of the Great Circle loop). You might do well to look in that area for a sailing class (I took mine up on Lake Michigan which is another possibility, but a farther distance to travel).
Fair winds and following seas.