The Optimist is a small, single-handed, one person sailing dinghy intended for use by children up to the age of 15. Sailing an Optimist is a great opportunity to learn the fundamentals of sailing and begin a lifelong love of sailing through understanding the foundations of the sport. Students of all levels and abilities are encouraged to take this class.
The classes we offer include:
Kinder Pram Program-
Our Kinder Pram program is designed to introduce young children (ages 4+, or at the discretion of the parent) to the love of sailing. Children are guided through the basics of sailing in an environment of fun, safety and enjoyment of the water. The Optimist dinghy is used for the experience, with multiple children per boat. The goal of the program is to nurture the love of sailing and water and prepare children to evolve into a regular Optimist class when age appropriate.
Opti Beginner Class- The optimist beginner class is a great way for children ranging from ages 7 to 15 to learn how to sail an optimist. Children will learn the foundations of sailing including the points of sail as well as basic boat handling maneuvers. Proceeding this class, your child will have a solid understanding of how to properly operate a small dinghy sailboat like the optimist.
Opti Intermediate Class- The optimist intermediate class is where children begin to learn the basic principles of sailboat racing. From general race course tactics, right of way rules, and sportsmanship the optimist intermediate sailors will have the knowledge required in order to participate in beginner-level sailboat racing. In this class, children will participate in sailing school sanctioned races twice a week in order to hone their skills to start sailing in regattas.
Opti Racing Class- The optimist racing class provides a competitive learning environment for children looking to compete in some of the Midwest's largest Optimist regattas. Children in this class will learn advanced race course tactics as well as advanced boat handling maneuvers. As with the opti intermediate class, the opti racing class will have sailing school sanctioned racing twice a week in order to hone their racing skills. Children are expected to have a solid understanding of opti sailing in order to prosper in this class.
The X-Boat is a 16 foot sailing dinghy designed as a safe, uncomplicated, junior trainer for evolving sailors. This hard-chined, pointed bow centerboard boat is the only non-scow governed by the Inland Lake Yachting Association and enjoys a healthy racing class in the ILYA, as well as offers a competitive experience for sailors.
The classes we offer include:
X-Boat Intermediate - In the X-boat intermediate class children will learn the principles required in order to operate an X- boat properly. Children will also learn the basics of X- boat racing in large regattas and will be encouraged to participate in some local regattas in order to gain racing experience. In this class, there will also be sailing school sanctioned racing twice a week in order to practice racing tactics and techniques.
X-Boat Racing- As with the opti racing class, the X- boat racing class provides a competitive environment for children looking to achieve success in large regattas all over the Midwest. Children will learn advanced boat handling and race course tactics in order to prepare for a competitive racing environment. This class has seen great success in the recent future with our students, Nathan and Graham Hetzler, winning the largest X- boat regatta in the country. Also, there will be sailing school sanctioned races twice a week in order to gain more racing experience for regattas.