Last fall, SEAS began designing strategic focus areas to grow our programs for the future. The four areas of focus bring our mission of Boating for Everyone to the forefront of everything we do. Within these areas, we look to develop and expand our presence in Sheboygan County, our surrounding counties and throughout the Midwest. We are excited to share this with you and hope you join in our excitement.
SEAS has become a leader in blind and visually impaired sailing community by hosting clinics across the country and hosting two major blind regattas in the past several years, including the 2016 World Sailing Blind Match Racing Championship. We are committed to our efforts in blind and visually impaired sailing with the intent of hosting a regatta each year and continue fostering growth through outreach and clinics. Our sound buoys have been improved and were featured at the 2017 US Sailing National Sailing Program Symposium in Austin, Texas.
Adaptive Sailing programs at SEAS reach beyond the visually impaired community. We have done extensive work with Harken to create a system for individuals with life changing conditions such as ALS to enjoy sailing with the help of customized equipment. This has allowed to partner with the Wisconsin ALS Chapter, but we are not stopping there. Thanks to a generous donation last year, we were able to add another Sonar to our fleet. The "Katie" will be dedicated to advancing adaptive sailing in Sheboygan.
SEAS is now a US Sailing Accredited Adaptive Sailing Program. We are looking to expand our reach throughout the community, state and the Midwest to give individuals the opportunity to have the freedom sailing offers. We are committed to seeing more individuals out in the future and work with individuals or groups to provide sailing education experiences for a wide range of abilities.
While Community Boating has always been a part of our programming and vision it has been a challenge to implement effectively. Realizing this has been our weakest program we have set about a plan to significantly overall the program in an effort to provide a better service to the community. Working closely with the Sheboygan Youth Sailing Center (SYSC), there will be more opportunities to rent a Sonar from SEAS or a J24 from SYSC. Rentals will begin June 1st with limited blackout dates and dedicated staff on the grounds during scheduled hours. Rentals from SEAS will require a membership, which includes a 2-hour rental. Reserve your rental time by emailing email@example.com or calling 920-395-5253 (seasonal number). Let us help you sail this summer.
SEAS is the only US Powerboating Certified Training Center in Wisconsin. Our staff is proud to offer exceptional training both in the classroom and on-the-water. Our training courses will provide you and your family the highest level of boating education with a variety of classes offered: Safe Powerboat Handling (SPH) and Accelerated SPH, Safety and Rescue Boat Handling and new this year Mark-set Boat training.
Our application for US Sailing Keelboat Accreditation is in process. This certification will allow us certify students for Basic Keelboat which is the first step in the US Sailing Certification series recognized nationally. As participation increases we will begin expanding into cruising and other advanced keelboat training opportunities.
Training goes beyond our sailing season though. We will continue to offer a variety of boat maintenance workshops, maritime history lectures and other programming to bring year-round activity.
The future looks bright for training with area high schools. SEAS is building a relationship with South High School to develop a curriculum in sailing instruction with their initiatives in STEM education. We are looking forward to a rewarding partnership and expanding to other high schools in the county.
As you can see, we are expanding in many directions. The only way to make this all possible it to reach a broader audience in these areas to bring more people to the Sheboygan Lakefront. We will continue to increase our presence on social media through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and reaching out to organizations to partner and grow with.
This will be the second year SEAS hosts the 4th of July Boat Regatta on the river. We would like to encourage you to consider making a boat this year and help us grow this fun event.
To bring more awareness to our Adaptive Sailing program, we will be attending Rehabilitation & Transition Conferences in Wisconsin and seeking speaking opportunities to promote our programs. We are creating informational pieces to showcase how SEAS is helping to build a larger boating community in Sheboygan County.
Each of the above areas has a target area of focus which will bring a comprehensive outlook to SEAS. Watch for more updates on classes, opportunities and events as we get closer to the sailing season. You will be seeing a lot more from us.