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Niantic Bay Sailing Academy Launches STEM & Environmental Science Curriculum

Niantic, CT (April 5, 2021) – Niantic  Bay Sailing Academy (NBSA) presents educational sailing programs that teach people of all ages the joy of this lifelong sport and the stewardship of our  local waters. Its lessons build upon sailing basics all the way through advanced racing strategies with an emphasis on the importance of environmental sustainability. Our junior program is offered to children age 7-17 of all experience levels. This year, thanks to generous grants from the Millstone Foundation  and  Sustainable CT, NBSA will be enhancing its curriculum with STEM and Environmental education, lead by two new instructors who will specialize in these areas.

NBSA has partnered with US Sailing’s Reach program. This program offers a 10-hour professional development course for educators and instructional materials to guide students through hands on lessons.

“The fact that we are able to weave in the STEM and Environmental Stewardship education into our sailing program will give the kids an even more authentic learning experiences on and off the water,” said NBSA president Ken Shluger. He continues, “this will not only make the kids more knowledgeable about wind, currents, buoyancy and sustainable practices but will make them better sailors.”

“The Reach Program utilizes sailing as an educational platform, challenging youth to embrace education, establish a love of learning and explore productive Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) based careers. Combining educators, sailing instructors, engineers, scientists with today’s youth provides them with a one-of-a-kind authentic learning experience, giving students the opportunity to apply classroom learning in a cooperative work environment. As a result students are inspired to become environmental stewards and socially responsible individuals.” Jen Guimaraes, US Sailing Youth Education Manager.

Further information is available at www.nianticsailing.org

 

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About NBSA

NBSA is a non-profit organization offering educational sailing programs to teach people of all ages the joy of this lifelong sport and the stewardship of local waters. Our adult lessons as well as our junior lessons build upon sailing basics all the way through advanced racing strategies with environmental stewardship woven throughout. The curriculum offered to our junior sailors incorporates STEM education to further their knowledge and development with real-life, practical examples.

 

About US Sailing

The United States Sailing Association (US Sailing), the national governing body for sailing, provides leadership, integrity, and advancement for the sport in the United States. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Bristol, Rhode Island, US Sailing is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization. US Sailing offers training and education programs for instructors and race officials, supports a wide range of sailing organizations and communities, issues offshore rating certificates, and provides administration and oversight of competitive sailing across the country, including National Championships and the US Sailing Team. For more information, please visitwww.ussailing.org.

 

Summer 2020 Season Recap

If you were at the Niantic Bay Sailing Academy awards program recently, you heard this young sailor share her  sentiments – and you saw dozens and dozens of youth be called up by name for trophies, awards and  certificates. It was heartwarming and authentic. That’s why we do what we do. 

“All the coaches are so helpful! I love this program! They have helped me become a better sailor.  My first year of sailing I had no clue what I was doing and now I am a very good sailor!” – CK

As we started planning for 2020, we didn’t even know if we would be able to host a sailing program this  summer. Could we offer a safe environment? Could parents who lost jobs be able to pay for lessons?  Honestly, we never dreamed we would take temperatures every day, or that we would give every kid a neck  buff and require them to wear it over their mouth and nose anytime they were on the property.  

We pivoted. We came up with a plan that felt safe and nimble.  

  • We cut our fees in half to ensure that families could participate.  
  • We offered several full scholarships to youth in the community.  
  • We limited our enrollment to keep the classes smaller and safer.

All of this was thanks to our donors! Your support gave us the ability to put sailing and safety first.  Kids first, money second.  

But as we look ahead to next year, we need your financial help now more than ever. Donate online at  www.nianticsailing.org. Or send a check to NBSA. P.O. Box 884, Niantic, CT, 06357. If you are a member of the  Charter Oak Credit Union, they will match your gift! 100% of your donation goes to supporting youth sailing. 

Thank you for your donation to ensure the future for these young sailors!

Double your 2019 NBSA contribution with a Charter Oak Credit Union match!

Niantic Bay Sailing Academy has closed out another banner year. As a direct result of generous donations, we were able to award 15 scholarships to children in the community and have taken initiatives that bring sustainability and concern for our environment to the forefront.

The Sailing Academy’s “green crew” partnered with the Mystic Aquarium to present programs about the dangers of plastics polluting our waters. The Larry White Junior Olympic Regatta was recognized for its sustainable and environmentally friendly practices, and social events at the club have taken a turn toward green as we eliminate single-use plastics and minimize waste.

As we plan for 2020, we have added two popular RS Fevas to our fleet and distributed a survey that will inform our future plans and purchases. In the meantime, we continue repairing and improving the current fleet, purchasing new sails and planning for future capital improvements.

Making a tax-deductible gift to NBSA has never been easier. Click the DONATE button at the bottom of the left menu on this page to donate online ASAP! Between now and November 27, members of the Charter Oak Credit Union who make a donation to NBSA can have their donation matched by the credit union. (www.CharterOak.org) Talk about doubling down!

Go Green Events June 26th and 27th!

Join the Niantic Bay Sailing Academy “Green Crew” as we host the Mystic Aquarium for two education events in June to get us all thinking a little more GREEN!

Plastic pollution is found in almost every marine habitat around the world, even in our very own Niantic Bay. Mystic Aquarium will join us to explore how macro and micro plastics enter the waterways and the impact of plastics on local species. You will take away both individual and collective actions that will help reduce additional plastic pollution.

Mystic Aquarium will be joining us first on Wednesday, June 26th, to get our younger crew excited about the environment! This event will take place at 12:00pm between the morning and afternoon sailing programs. This program is free for all young NBSA participants, NBYC members and friends. Please bring lunch or order lunch from the Slipper Shell.

On Thursday, June 27th at 5:30 pm, adults will have an opportunity to mingle, eat, drink, and Go Green as the NBSA, in collaboration with Mystic Aquarium, hosts an educational cocktail reception featuring beer tasting by Noble Jay Brewing Company, as well as appetizers from Flanders Fish, White Gate Farm, Mystic Oysters, and other community partners. There will be a chance to do a little “green” shopping with Nurture Nest and Sign Craft. With a focus on reducing single use plastics, BE SURE TO BRING YOUR FAVORITE REUSABLE DRINKING VESSEL!! All NBSA parents, NBYC members, and friends are welcome. A suggested donation of $10 will help support the NBSA sailing programs.

See you there!

NBSA Reflections on a Great 2018!

If you saw the activity at NBYC this summer, you know that the Niantic Bay Sailing Academy is stronger and more robust than ever. This year, over 100 children and adults participated in our sailing programs.

NBSA’s mission is to strengthen our sailing programs, foster a love and dedication to sailing with the NBYC membership and in our local communities while teaching environmental stewardship. Since its inception, NBSA has delivered on its goals. This year’s program saw participation from all skill levels – beginner boot camps to youth racing programs to adult sailing instruction. Whether in Optimists, Blue Jays, 420’s or Ensigns, sailors of all ages and abilities were out on the water learning, competing, and having fun. Clearly, the influx of new sailors we saw this past year bodes well for the future.

NBSA was represented in many Eastern CT Sailing Association (ECSA) events and beyond. NBSA sailors placed 1st and 2nd in the Larry White Regatta. The 420 class at the same event was also won by NBSA sailors, which qualified them to represent ECSA at the Midget Championships; NBSA sailors also sailed in the highly competitive Club 420 New England Championships finishing 15th out of 72 sailors.

While we are proud of these racing achievements, the skills and values learned are more valuable than winning on the race course. NBSA is 100% funded by program fees and by tax-deductible donations. Through these generous donations, we were able to offer sailing scholarships to fourteen youth who would not otherwise have had this opportunity. We also focused more on environmental stewardship and protecting the waters we enjoy each time we sail.

We are excited to add a new boat to our youth program next year, the RS Feva. This cutting edge double-handed boat is a stepping stone for many kids moving up from the Optimist but not yet ready for the 420. We would like to purchase two of these for use in lessons next summer. Check out www.rssailing.com for more information about these boats!

Thanks to all our students, instructors, donors, and everyone else who made such a great 2018 possible for Niantic Bay Sailing Academy. Looking forward to more exciting opportunities for youth and adult sailing in 2019!

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