Dories Summer Sailing Camp + Junior Basic Keelboat


Our goal is to help give children an appreciation of our marine environment and teach them a range of skills such as teamwork, independent boat handling, navigation and rowing.

Dories Camp – Ages 6-13 (Cost $350)

At the end of the class students will understand basic navigation and sail themselves to Sheffield Island. We will have a contest to see who can identify the most marine species. This course is taught in the mornings from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, with 15 hours of instruction over 5 days.

Some of the things we cover:
• Biology of estuaries (we use nets to sample marine life)
• Island geology (demonstration of how a glacier works)
• Operating an outboard-powered boat (with a USCG captain on board)
• Parts of the boat
• Wind direction
• Rules of the road
• Basic sailing skills
• Man overboard drills

Family Sale — 5% off each additional child per family
Use code Dories1 at checkout  (please call 203-838-1110 to receive discount for three or more children)
Extended Camp Sale – 5% off second week (and following weeks)
Use code Dories2 at checkout (please call 203-838-1110  to receive discount for three or more weeks)
Two kids + Two weeks – 10% off second child for second week (per family)
Use code Dories3 at checkout

Junior Basic Keelboat Program – Ages 14-17

Cost $820 (without certification) $900 (with certification)

This 2-week program is designed for kids 14-17 who know the basics of sailing and wish to be able to Captain an Ensign. Taught in the afternoons from 1:00 to 4:00 pm This program includes all the skills taught in our Basic Keelboat Adult program. With 24 hours of onboard instruction after the first 8 days students will be able to: reef, do MOB drills, perform single-handed tacks and jibes, anchor, read a chart, understand navigation and rules of the road, and much more. 

The final two days (Thursday and Friday of the second week) are both devoted to practice sessions. The kids will sail the boats themselves, accompanied by USCG Captain and or instructor. If conditions cooperate they may even practice a MOB drill by rescuing one of their instructors. Students 14 and 15 cannot receive the US Sailing Basic Keelboat certification but will receive the same level and quality of instruction. Kids 16 and 17 may receive their Certification if they chose to. 

Students getting certified will undergo a two-hour checkout test sail on their final day as well as receive a one-year membership to US Sailing. Before the practice sessions, all students must have read the textbook and passed the US Sailing Basic Keelboat written test. The test will likely be given the Wednesday of the second week, so we ask parents to be aware that additional time may be required after class on that day. We recommend that students acquire their Connecticut safe boating certification prior to the start of the course.  

Junior basic Keelboat without certification Ages 14-17 Cost $820

Family Sale — 5% off each additional child per family
Use code jensign1 at checkout  (please call 203-838-1110 to receive discount for three or more children)

Junior basic Keelboat with certification Ages 16-17 Cost $900

Family Sale — 5% off each additional child per family
Use code jbk1 at checkout  (please call 203-838-1110 to receive discount for three or more children)


Click to read what to expect, bring… Dories Checklist

Download Registration Form here  (Please bring registration form to class filled out on the first day)
Please click here before signing up  Payments, Cancellation and Refund Policy

All students should be able to swim (although there is no swimming in our program) and must own and wear a comfortable, high quality Type 3 lifejacket, preferably made by Extrasport.

Safety is all important. Our facility at Norwalk Cove Marina is in a safe, family-orientated area. Our boats are all unsinkable, with keels to prevent capsizing. We always have at least one USCG (US Coast Guard) licensed captain on hand.

Note: The Dories Camp runs Monday thru Friday from 9:00 am -12:00 pm. Ages 6-13 years old.

The Junior Basic Keelboat Program is taught in the afternoons from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. Ages 14-17.