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Annapolis School of Seamanship & BoatUS Foundation offer affordable on water boat training

by Scott Croft 12 Jun 09:26 PDT

New boats are everywhere on the Chesapeake Bay these days as families seek activities they can do together while keeping socially distant. With new boats come more first-time boat buyers who may not have critical at-the-helm boat handling skills.

Two organizations that specialize in teaching mariners have taken notice: The Annapolis School of Seamanship (ASOS) has teamed up with the nonprofit BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety and Clean Water to host a variety of affordable on-water powerboat training classes throughout the summer for beginning, advanced and women boaters.

ASOS trains several thousand students each year at all skill levels from its base of operations at 410 Severn Avenue on Maryland's capital waterway, Spa Creek. This year, the ASOS/BoatUS Foundation on-water training partnership will add a range of new three-hour courses including "Intro to Boating," "Women Making Waves," "Precision Docking and Boat Handling," "Women's Precision Docking and Boat Handling," "Open Water Boat Handling" and "Open Water Advanced Maneuvering."

Taught aboard single-engine center-console powerboats, courses are offered most weeknights as well as select weekends, making them easy to fit in a busy schedule. There is a minimum class size of two persons and maximum of four students per vessel, ensuring each student gets sufficient time at the helm under the watchful eye of a U.S. Coast Guard-licensed captain certified to teach the National Safe Boating Council modular curriculum. The cost is an affordable $175 per person. The minimum age to participate is 18 years old, and training follows all COVID safety protocols. ASOS/BoatUS Foundation courses also can be taught aboard a private vessel.

Since 2002, ASOS has trained hundreds of boaters on a variety of seamanship topics, educating and empowering mariners with the knowledge and skills to make informed, safe decisions when operating and maintaining a vessel.

"The Annapolis School of Seamanship's success in educating boaters as well as offering access to the Chesapeake Bay aboard a professionally maintained fleet of training and charter vessels makes it very easy to get confidence- and-skill-building time at the helm," said BoatUS Foundation Education Coordinator Alan Dennison.

To search available dates, get more info or register, go to BoatUS.org/On-Water.

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