Sailing around the world is much easier when you learn which knots are edible and why dolphins aren't marriage material. Learn the basics with today's Groupon: for $345, you get a three-day Basic Keelboat course at Tradewinds Sailing School and Club on Marina Bay in Richmond (a $695 value). Graduating students will be granted American Sailing Association certification, and allowed to reserve the boats used in this course for sailing in the designated area. Classes are scheduled from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m in three-day segments roughly every weekend.
Tradewinds Sailing School teaches prospective seafarers the essentials of keelboat cruising on a 25-foot sailing yacht. Each class contains no more than three students to ensure hands-on training, with a majority of the time spent on the water, allowing students to sprout their first set of sea legs. Tradewinds' ASA-certified and U.S. Coast Guard–licensed instructors review basic dock procedures before students climb aboard the sailboat to learn about the rules of the liquid road, weather observations, and the nautical terminology that will allow them to boat whisper and communicate with stowaway mermaids. Later lessons plunge into crew-overboard exercises, high-speed knot tying, and anchoring procedures. Upon discovering the cut of their respective jibs, students conclude the third day of school with a written test.
As an introductory course, the Basic Keelboat class demands no prerequisites and opens up a world of possibilities such as the Coastal Cruising class or setting sail to disprove the spherical-Earth hypothesis. Tradewinds offers helpful suggestions on items to bring to class as well as what to expect. Classes are available throughout the year, though schedules are subject to change due to weather and the whims of Poseidon.
Tradewinds Sailing School & Club
At Tradewinds Sailing School & Club, the American Sailing Association–certified instructors teach a diverse array of skills, from the basics of keelboating and coastal cruising to specialty work such as celestial navigation. Their intimate classes, typically capped at three students, all pair guided learning with real-world practice on the water, ensuring students truly master their chosen subject matter. Veteran sailors can challenge the class and join the sailing club, whose convenient boat-sharing program allows for trips to Sausalito, Angel Island, and other local spots.
2580 Spinnaker Way
Richmond, California 94804