Learn-to-Sail classes are offered free to all members of the MIT community, with more than 2,400 people participating every season.
“The foundation of the program is teaching basic skills, and there is a hardy core of volunteers who enjoy sharing their passion with newcomers almost every evening of the week,” says Franny Charles, MIT’s long-time sailing master.
MIT’s recreational sailors also can procure a sailing card and use the fleet; more than 3,000 cards are issued annually. As a result, the MIT Jack Wood Sailing Pavilion on the Charles River is a hub of activity all summer long. The facility is open seven days a week from April 1 through November 15.
A variety of sailboat types allows students to challenge themselves. MIT has more than 100 boats, including:
31 Tech dinghies
24 Club flying juniors (used by the racing team)
6 420s (also a racing boat)
6 gaff-rigged catboats
6 laser class Olympic boats
1 foiling catamaran
1 foiling moth class sailboat
1 1902, museum-quality, 51-foot Herreshoff sloop suitable for sailing around Massachusetts Bay
+ various sailboards