Sail Away

Take a class with one of Amer­ica’s top sail­ing schools

RSWLiving - - Contents - BY BETH OLIVER

Recre­ational ac­tiv­i­ties: bi­cy­cle, walk, ride, swim, tour, shell, shop, dine, re­lax and so on. How about learn­ing to sail? Off­shore Sail­ing School has four con­ve­nient lo­ca­tions in South­west Florida where you can en­joy a two-hour sail­ing les­son. The more ad­ven­tur­ous can en­roll in a two- to seven-day sail­ing course and earn the U.S. Sail­ing cer­ti­fi­ca­tion, which qual­i­fies the grad­u­ate to skip­per a boat up to 50 feet.

A new­found sense of ac­com­plish­ment and free­dom, along with the op­por­tu­nity to de­velop a life­long skill to share with family and friends, are among the rev­e­la­tions ex­pe­ri­enced by those who took the sail­ing cour­ses.

Steve Col­gate founded Off­shore Sail­ing School some 54 years ago. To­day he and his wife Doris are still at the helm of the com­pany, re­spon­si­ble for teach­ing fam­i­lies and more than 140,000 adults

how to sail. The Col­gates live the sail­ing life­style; they have de­vel­oped the con­cept and hosted hun­dreds of sail­ing flotilla va­ca­tions in ex­otic ports of call. For three years, the cou­ple has even cam­paigned their own 54-foot sloop, Sleuth, in the global rac­ing cir­cuit.

Off­shore Sail­ing School teaches all lev­els of sail­ing in­struc­tion at two lo­ca­tions in the Bri­tish Vir­gin Is­lands and at four lo­ca­tions in South­west Florida—Cap­tiva Is­land, Fort My­ers Beach, Cape Coral and down­town St. Peters­burg. Learn to Sail, Per­for­mance Sail­ing, and Bare­boat Char­ter Cruis­ing cour­ses are taught aboard the Col­gate 26 (de­signed by Steve Col­gate) and yachts and cata­ma­rans mea­sur­ing 40-50 feet. Stu­dents es­pe­cially en­joy sail­ing in Pine Is­land Sound and the Gulf of Mexico, where they can ex­plore bar­rier is­lands and mar­vel at mag­nif­i­cent wildlife while gaz­ing at gor­geous Florida sun­sets.

Give Off­shore Sail­ing a call and come aboard for the ex­pe­ri­ence of a life­time.

Off­shore Sail­ing School’s Fast Track to Cruis­ing course takes par­tic­i­pants from the couch to the cap­tain’s chair in just one week. Doris and Steve Col­gate

The new­est ad­di­tion to Off­shore Sail­ing’s fleet is the Jean­neau 479.

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