Block Island Community Sailing looks forward to the season
Block Island Community Sailing, Inc. (BICS), the island’s nonprofit educational community sailing organization, is gearing up for a busy sailing season this summer. BICS, based at the New Harbor Boat Basin (near the Oar Restaurant) is a membership-based adult and family sailing organization that was founded to make the sport of sailing affordable, accessible and fun for families and visitors from the island.
BICS is a US-accredited keelboat sailing school (the only one in Rhode Island) that teaches sailing with nationally certified sailing instructors and offers a “Learn to Sail” program on larger boats (not dinghies) best suited to adult/family sailing instruction. Completion of the “Basic Keel Sailing Course” grants the student an American Sailing Certificate which can be used to demonstrate sailing skills when checking a sailboat into any other sailing organization.
In addition to providing sailing instruction and sailboat availability for our members and their guests, there are several community benefit programs that include a special women’s sailing program taught by women for women, and our “Camp Mohegan Sailing Program”, which provides sailing instruction for the Children of Camp Mohegan of the City of New Shoreham Recreation Department at no cost to the program. BICS also teaches US Sailing courses “Basic Cruising” and “Coastal Navigation” on the coastal cruiser Cape Dory 28 Mischief, which seats five and has a galley and head. Perfect for an overnight cruise to Mystic Seaport or a sunset family night out on Block Island Sound.
BICS members, for a low annual fee of $250, can take family and friends sailing, at no additional cost, whenever boats are available. Lessons and special events, such as an overnight family cruise to Mystic Seaport, for example, are offered to our members at a reduced price. You can register anytime online at www.sailbi.org.
In addition to sailing instruction and recreational boat use, BICS is home to the Performance Handicap Racing Fleet (PHRF) on the island which offers several racing events including the Thursday Night Sailing Series, the Mary D. Fund Benefit Regatta and the BIYC. Around the island pursuit regatta. For this year, BICS and the Stonington Harbor Yacht Club have been named as host clubs for a major regional yacht racing event, the “Block Island Offshore Regatta” which will attract racing yachts from across the region to compete in distance to Block. Island Sound, and around the island on August 12 and 13.
If you are new to racing, sailing lessons are offered on board our boats, including two Raven 24s and an Olympic Class Soling, every Thursday evening by an experienced skipper, and/or coaching from a hunting boat. BICS also offers sailing racing rules seminars and invites potential newcomers to join the race committee,
which guarantees an exciting evening on the water.
Help bring the joy and excitement of sailing to Block Island! You can join BICS as a member, donate to support community charitable programs, or volunteer to help work on the growing fleet of sailboats. Contact BICS at [email protected], or visit the website at www.sailbi.org.