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Thankful much?

Jan 7, 2011
Oday 322 East Chicago, IN
My sons GF’s dad…Tom.

Took me out on his Catalina 30 for a short afternoon sail.

I was hooked (obsessed actually).


The Admiral hasn’t forgiven him yet…and it has been 11 years ;-)


Tom J

Sep 30, 2008
Catalina 310 Quincy, MA
My brother-in-law, Bob, for gifting me a 10' SeaScout that hooked me on sailing. He then gifted his 23' O'Day to my Dad and me, and we restored it and sailed the Massachusetts coast for a dozen years or so.
Oct 22, 2014
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
My Grandmother's friend took my brother and I out on his homemade Thunderbird. We sailed from San Diego Bay to the Coronado Islands and back.
I was hooked. at a young age.

My Dad's Navy career meant I had access to Special Services.
They had El Toros. Too much fun.
From then on it was any boat any time.
Jul 7, 2004
Hunter 30T Cheney, KS
My wife, bless her heart. She signed us up for the Red Cross sailing course. We bought our first boat shortly after that. Also have to thank my place of employment. Without my good job, we'd never have been able to afford a boat.
Oct 26, 2008
Catalina 320 Barnegat, NJ
I'd have to thank my mom. She insisted that we must have a sailboat at our lake cottage - she didn't really sail at all, she just insisted that we must have one. We started first with a Sea Scouter and then a Ghost 13. My dad, who served in the Navy, had little interest in boats. His interest was farming & ranching.
I'd also have to thank Chalet Garden Nursery in Wilmette, IL. They sold my dad the 2 dinghy sailers, and later sold me my first Windsurfer and Hobie 16. Boat sails at a Nursery, who'da thunk it? They actually sold Catalinas up to 40' in their showroom, for use on Lake Michigan.
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Feb 17, 2006
Lancer 27PS MCB Camp Pendleton KF6BL
In 1974 I was with friends at the Caspian Sea. One of them was a hobby sailor. She had the boat that day and asked if I wanted to go for a ride. I think it was a Dolphin but not sure. But as soon as the wind hit the sails and the boat started to scurry across the water, I knew right then and there sailing was for me.
Aug 2, 2005
Pearson 33-2 & Typhoon 18 Seneca Lake
A friend named Barry infected me with the sailing virus by including me in a weekend at Rock Hall aboard his boat. BTW: He also saved me from writing a big check to buy an older Dickerson circa 1996. As I prepared to write the check in the broker's office Barry asked, "Do you want to work on this boat or do you want to sail it?" I walked away from that purchase.

Most certainly, my wife who encouraged the infection and then caught it herself as soon as she took the wheel of our Irwin 31 Citation on the upper Chesapeake Bay circa 2002.

I am thankful for both those people's encouragement and for all the talented and friendly people who shared their knowledge. Of course, that includes you, the SBO crew!
Dec 25, 2000
Hunter Passage 42 Shelter Bay, WA
Oh gosh, where to begin. So many stories growing up that exposed me to the pleasures of time on the water. Our pond raft, my uncle's skiff that I borrowed and converted into a sail boat, my uncle's drag saw that I used to build a paddle wheeler. Each a story of its own.
Dec 25, 2000
Hunter Passage 42 Shelter Bay, WA
My grandmother's 15 acre milk farm rested on the Willapa River tide water banks and every winter it would overfill its banks and leave a small pond in a field depression. That became our playground during the rainy winter months where we would sail the world in our eight foot long by four foot wide telephone pole raft. Those were fond memories for my cousins and siblings. Every morning I would look out our kitchen window that overlooked her field to see whether the river had left a pond and when it did, well it was a scramble to board the raft, cast off and sail to distant ports.

Finally found the one picture of us cruising the pond on our telephone pole raft. In the picture, my younger sister Janee is seated on the box, I'm the taller one standing and my cousin Charlie is standing in front of me.

Pond Raft1.JPG

Pond Raft2.JPG
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Jun 3, 2012
Hunter 33 Steamboat Wharf, Hull, MA
Community Boating on the Charles River in Boston. Somebody many years ago created this facility and left it for young people in Boston to learn sailing. They charged five dollars a year, I think, to join. There was a fleet of 15' Mercury Sloops available. Older members taught younger members. You got certificates as you learned and shortly could take a boat out solo. God Bless the Benefactors of that place that still serves today.


Mar 23, 2017
Belliure 41 Now on the Chesapeake
Who do you thank for helping you get into sailing?
Your question has been posed in different ways to me in the past. Mostly in the form "Why do you want to sail?"
So recently I wrote a poem to try and explain it. I reproduce it here:

I watch a video of sailing
through straights in Northern lands
and my heart accelerates it's beating
as I dream of lovely, far off lands.

Born on a farm, far from the sea,
I wonder how this feeling came to be?
What occurred, to cause in me,
Such a longing for the sea?

I recall when 3 years old
and swimming in a stream.
My siblings wanted me to wear
a floating vest, to keep me safe in there.

But I just kept on swimming
with nothing on but skin and hair.
I taught myself to swim alright,
from shore to here, to there!

And then when I was 12 years old, I visited a friend.
I saw the ocean, smelled the sea, my mind began to bend.
My soul ignited as if on fire, freedom to the end!
The ocean's where I need to roam, with ship and no known end.

Now many years has passed since then and many miles sailed.
But that thirst for freedom is not lost, and so it must be hailed.
The need to go and sail again, with nothing in control -
beyond the earth to know - of when and where and how to go.

Jan 2, 2017
O'Day & Islander 322 & 37 Scottsdale, AZ & Owls Head, ME
Swallows and Amazons. The first in a series of novels written by the English author, Arthur Ransome, about boys and girls learning to sail and camp. Read as a small boy, they were the beginning.
“Swallows and Amazon’s forever!”


Feb 11, 2017
Islander Freeport 36 Ottawa
My father starting sailing as a teen and when I was born my parents had a Dragon which they raced and "cruised" on. The year I was born my dad bought a Niagara 30 bare hull and finished it in the driveway so by the time I was a year old we had a boat more appropriate for a family. I grew up sailing on the Niagara until we switched to a Viking 33 when I was 9. My dad was a power squadron instructor so I learned a lot about seamanship and coastal navigation from a young age. I also went through the junior sailing program at our club and then raced a Laser and a variety of other keelboats as a teen.

I am very thankful for everything my father taught me about sailing.
Jul 7, 2004
Hunter 30T Cheney, KS
I went out to sea often in the Marines, but the Navy was always at the helm :)
My intro to nautical protocol.
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