Junior sailors program bowse in record numbers for the first time in over 40 years.

SAILING ON Micheal Hymus, owner of Angry birds restaurant is handing Jr. Sailing Director Robert Quaiff a cheque for the remainder of what he donated towards The Prince Edward Yacht Club Junior Sailing camps. Thanks to all the donations received the programs numbers in attendance hit an all time high as they maxed out for the first time in over 40 years the programs have been in operation. (Desirée Decoste/Gazette Staff)

 

DESIRÉE DECOSTE

STAFF WRITER

It was a high water mark in 2019 as the Prince Edward Yacht Club (PEYC) Junior Sailing program was maxed out with record numbers of your sailors attempting to develop their sea legs in Smith’s Bay.

The county is the ideal location for new sailors due to its well protected waters and gentle wave action. The sailing camp is located at Waupoos Marina in the waters between the docking area and Waupoos Island.

SAILING SAVVY A group of junior sailors with strengthen sea legs are more than happy as they finish off their week at camp. The Prince Edward Yacht Club Junior Sailing camps received tremendous donations enabling kids to attend the program who otherwise, would not have had the chance to. (Desirée Decoste/Gazette Staff)

The camp is very grateful for the cooperation of the Waupoos Marina and their staff for providing an ideal and spacious setting for instruction and on the water activities.

“We had record numbers we haven’t seen before,” stated Robert Quaiff, Jr. Sailing Director for the camp. “I think last year we had somewhere in the vicinity of about 75 children and this year we’re going to hit 124.”

Thanks to support from Micheal Hymus of Angry Birds restaurant for donating $10,000 towards the camp, a business associate in the automotive industry named Mandy from Detroit, MI who wanted to sponsor 10 kids, the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron Prince Edward  and a few members of the PEYC, many children who otherwise would not have had the opportunity to attend this camp were able to do so.

While many of the Jr. Sailing students come from the County of Prince Edward, students from other provinces and countries have attended the camp as well.

ALL ABOARD FOR YOUTH SAILING- (From Left) PEYC Jr. Sailing School Director Robert Quaiff, local Power and Sailing Squadron Commnader Eric Bronson , Lead Instructor Sarah Young and instructors Lucy deCartier and Angelique Singh at recent camp barbecue supper at the Yacht Club. The Power Squadron sponsored two students for two weeks of Junior Sailing School. (Jason Parks/Gazette Staff)

Grandparents and caregivers alike find a gift of a sailing camp week is a wonderful way to entertain their grand kids/kids while they’re visiting for the summer.

The very first lesson learned on the water for the junior sailors is how to capsize a sail boat followed by righting the vessel.

“The very first thing we do, it may sound a bit awful but the first lesson on the water is how to capsize a boat and that way they learn how to get back in,” said Quaiff. “Sometimes the dinghy’s do get into some wind and that unforced air and a brand new sailor who doesn’t understand the whole dynamics of it isn’t very safe, so we want to make sure they know how to get back into the boat.”

The 2019 summer junior sailing camps ran the weeks of July 8th, 15th, 22nd and the 29th and in August they ran the weeks of the 5th and the 12th.

All sailing instructors are Sail Canada trained and certified and are well acquainted in Safety and First Aid.

“It really teaches the kids about water, water safety and the elements of sailing,” Quaiff expressed. “Other then the odd motor boat flying by, it’s just you, the boat and the wind on the water. It’s such a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere and the kids get to interact with one another so there’s great camaraderie between them.”

At a cheque presentation late last week at the PEYC,Canadian Power and Sail Prince Edward Squadron Commander Eric Bronson told the group of assembled young sailors who were capping off a hard week on the water with a barbecue supper that they had taken the first step on a life long journey in sailing and boating experience.

“That’s where the Canadian Power Squadron comes in because you can take the skills you’ve learned at the junior sailing school and the practical side and we can help train you and so you can get your pleasure craft operating certificate, navigation and weather certification,” Bronson said.

For more information please visit https://www.peyc.ca/junior-sailing/

or email Junior Sailing Director Robert Quaiff at jsc@peyc.ca or call 613-885-2313