Expert women sailors volunteer a weekend to teach other women the art and science of sailing every year at the Island Yacht Club located in the Alameda Marina. This year, the event will be held Sept. 28th and 29th. Advanced registration is highly encouraged and the Early Bird Special price of $195 for the weekend will increase to $220 after Sept. 13th. On-line registration and print-out forms plus all class descriptions are available at www.womenssailingseminar.com.
Participants will begin the weekend event hearing Keynote speaker Sally Honey who has been elected Yachtswoman of the Year twice. She has a lifetime of experience at the helm racing and cruising, is currently a volunteer at the America’s Cup competition and is writing a book about Safety at Sea for US Sailing.
Students, ranging from beginners to experienced skippers themselves, then attend classes both on the water and in the classroom. Courses are either arranged in pre-designed “tracks” or may be customized according to the needs of the participant. Throughout Saturday, fun raffles entertain while nourishing meals created by Island Yacht Club’s highly regarded chef Trevor Yamamoto are enjoyed. The day ends with a no-host cocktail party before everyone heads home to rest for Sunday. On day two, participants choose either a day cruising on the San Francisco Bay or racing on the Oakland Estuary. Racers finish the weekend with a fun Awards Ceremony which cruisers are invited to attend, if they have returned from their cruise.
Often, women return year after year to learn new skills or to refresh their knowledge by repeating classes taken in prior years. Currently off cruising in the Caribbean, past participant Linda Shur wrote to say, “While my husband has been a patient teacher, there was something really special about learning from other women, hearing their stories and dreams as well as doubts and enjoying their camaraderie. I would encourage any newbie to attend and if I were back in the Bay Area, I would attend just to hone my skills and learn things I haven’t yet covered. And, by the way, I’m glad to see that you have a class on diesels because, as I’ve learned, when cruising long distances, things need repair and maintenance all of the time.”