Even as the ice remains in the Harbor, your friends at Little Traverse Sailors are dreaming of summer breezes and sunshine. Are you? If you aren’t, this week’s newsletter brings news that might help get you into the sailing mood: new boats! And who doesn’t love new boats?!
But first, a quick update on registration: Registration for Summer 2015 LTS programs is now in full swing, and in fact is well ahead of the pace from last year. If you are planning to have a student (or two or three!) in LTS this summer, please register soon — some weeks (especially the mid-summer peak weeks) are nearing capacity already!
We are happy to see that so many more students than ever before are taking advantage of the all-day program and multi-week discounts. Even after just a week of registrations, we already have 300% more students taking more than three weeks of sailing! More weeks of sailing equals more learning, and more fun!
Also, registration for the LTS Race Team is just about to close. If you have a student interested in Race Team, be sure to get in touch with us right away — space in that program is very limited and we’ve had a higher-than expected response. See our Race Team page for more information.
As always, LTS is committed to providing the joy of sailing to as many young people as possible, and has a limited number of scholarships available to those would not otherwise be able to participate. See our Scholarships page for more information.
Exciting Changes in the LTS Fleet!
One thing that you will notice right away when you arrive at the waterfront this summer is some changes in the LTS fleet. Over the winter, we have:
- added three more Bugs to our five-boat fleet (to make a total of eight)
- added six used (but very good) 420s to replace our six Pixels;
- added three more brand new 420s for Race Team (to make a total of four ‘race-ready’ 420s);
We are very excited about these changes and the new possibilities they offer.
Bugs are 8.5ft singlehanded trainers specifically designed for new sailors to experience the joy of sailing on their own, as well as offer students who are more advanced but too small for a Laser to experience high-performance dinghy sailing. The expansion of this fleet allows us to get our smallest sailors skippering on their own much more quickly, and the Bugs will be the core of our exciting new Junior Race Team program.
The 420 is the most popular doublehanded training boat in the world, and is the standard boat used by junior sailing programs, high school sailing, and collegiate sailing in the US. There is a reason for this: the 420 is very stable, durable, unsinkable, extremely versatile, and can be configured as both a gentle trainer for new sailors and a high-performance thrill ride (complete with spinnaker and trapeze) for advanced students. With experience in our 420s, LTS students will be able to seamlessly move into other sailing programs anywhere in the world. There is also a very practical side to moving to 420s: new and used boats are easily available, parts are easy to find, etc. With 420s LTS will be able to field a better maintained fleet at lower cost; indeed, over the next several years we anticipate systematically replacing our nine Lido 14s with a similar number of 420s.
The third component of the LTS fleet is our collection of six Lasers. The Laser is the single most popular training and racing dinghy in the world, and is used by the newest beginners all the way to the Olympics. Although we aren’t adding to our Laser fleet for 2015, this boat remains a key part of our programs, and we anticipate expanding our fleet as needed over the next few years.
We want to gratefully acknowledge the incredible generosity of long-time supporter Jack Martin, as well numerous individual, including many LTS families and Little Traverse Yacht Club members. Without their help, these fleet changes — which will directly and immediately improve the quality of our sailing programs — would not have been possible. We also want to thank Irish Boat Shop for its unwavering support of LTS, including selling us the Bugs at dealer cost, and the new 420s at a very substantial discount.
Thats the news for this week!
As always, if you have questions about anything LTS, please contact our Director, Dan Thompson.