Summer Sailing Class Descriptions

The Port Jefferson Yacht Club has been teaching sailing to young people and adults for over 30 years on Port Jefferson Harbor and Long Island’s North Shore. The success of our programs is best measured by the accomplishments of our graduates. It has been a joy to watch young sailors advance from basic sailing to advance racing. Participants in our programs, as adults, have gone on to crew in the America’s Cup competition and many are associated with the sailing industry, while others are leaving their mark in Club Racing all over Long Island Sound. Our instructors are products of the sailing program or have been on local high school or college teams. Our classes are tailored to meet the needs of the students appropriately by experience.

In 2013, we were proud to offer two new programs to the Junior Sailing Program, “You and Me By the Sea” and “Sea Stars”. This was done in an effort to introduce our younger sailors to sailing, our working harbor, and our local marine environment. In 2014, with the help of our club members and their boats, we were excited to launch the “Junior Big Boat” program in order to provide another opportunity for more experienced sailors to broaden their skills for racing and cruising.

Please consider the Port Jefferson Yacht Club as your first step to a lifetime of sailing. We plan to make it a summer of fun for all!

You & Me By the Sea

This program is intended as a great introduction for our youngest sailors. Children ages 4 and 5 will discover sailing and the marine environment with their parent or significant adult where FUN is emphasized, as the young sailors develop basic skills and a sense of comfort near and on the water.  This program will run for 2 hours on Friday mornings and will include land-based activities as well as opportunities to get on the water in small and big boats.

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Sea Stars

This learn-to sail class is for the beginner sailor age 6 to 7, who is comfortable near and on the water and ready to participate in group instruction.  A small class size and student/instructor ratio will engage the sailors in sailing and water education activities where they will build their knowledge of the marine environment and basic seamanship, rigging, and boat handling in both small and big boats.  This class will run for 2 hours on Fridays and will provide a basis for the sailors to advance to the Pram classes when they turn 8 years of age.

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Pram & Pixel

Our Optimist Pram classes are designed for children 7 to 15 years of age.  Instruction is geared to both the beginner as well as more advanced sailors.  Sailors will learn the parts of the boat, basic seamanship skills including rigging, knot tying, basic boat handling and care, points of sail and water safety, while building confidence to skipper an 8-foot Optimist alone.  The Prams are safe and forgiving.  Generally, there is one child per boat.  All students are followed closely by our instructors in “safety” boats.  Classes are conducted on the water and in the classroom.  In addition to sailing instruction, students will have the opportunity to participate in marine science activities.  Sailors who show interest and the skill level will have an opportunity to participate in Opti racing.

The Pixel Class is designed for sailors 12 to 17 years of age who have mastered basic seamanship and water safety skills and are ready to have fun and gain confidence sailing with a partner. The Pixel is a 14-foot long boat rigged with a main and jib. It is fast, stable and self-bailing, and a great intermediate boat that will prepare sailors for the popular Club 420 used by high schools and colleges both locally and around the country. Classes will be conducted on the water and in the classroom. In addition to sailing instruction, students will have the opportunity to participate in marine science and water education activities that will broaden their knowledge of the marine environment and the physical principles of sailing. Sailors who show interest and the skill level will have an opportunity to participate in racing skills and drills.

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Junior Big Boat Sailing

This program is for more experienced sailors age 14 and above.  Enjoy learning to skipper and crew a 23-foot Catalina or larger boat, as part of a team of sailors with an instructor on board.  Sailors will learn to work together to perform basic sailing maneuvers with an emphasis on safety and seamanship.  Basic navigation and Racing Rules of Sailing will be taught to prepare students for participation in cruising, Race Committee duties, or as guest crew for big-boat racing. Classes will run from 1:00 to 4:00 PM on Mondays through Thursdays.

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