It’s both. We are a non-profit association where people teach and learn from each other the art of sailing.
CENTRE is run by its members. We share the boats, the work and the fun. Costs are kept low because everyone pitches in and everything is shared. You don’t need your own boat to sail with us, and you don’t need a pile of sailing gear—we provide everything. We work in both French and English. It doesn’t matter what your interest is in sailing, that it be just for the pleasure of relaxing on the water, training or getting a certification, perhaps become one of our Skippers?- You are all welcome!
There’s a board of directors, and a skipper’s council. We have people in charge of training programs, finance, publicity, social activities, the Web Site, communications, material management and boat maintenance. Our qualified skippers sail both our keelboats twice daily. All positions are filled by volunteers.
· New members are assigned a sponsor—somebody who already knows the ropes. Your sponsor will help you get oriented and answer your questions.
· We offer sailing instruction leading to specific qualifications; or you can choose to sail all summer with us and learn as you go.
· You will have opportunities to go on exciting live-aboard sailing trips to places like Georgian Bay, Lake Ontario, Lake Champlain and the West Indies.
· We also offer a number of social activities: see the “Overview of Social Activities” hotlink.
Any person interested in trying it out is allowed to a free outing as a guest. You only have to contact info@VoileBorealis.org to set this up.
We also have a Trial Membership program where you can try it out before committing to a full season membership.
Of course there are rules. Our rules and procedures are designed to keep people and boats safe while maximizing members’ learning and enjoyment. As a member, you will be expected to know and follow the Centre’s rules and procedures. Rules and procedures are available to members only, under the menu “Archive”.
Our two keelboats each go out twice a day, weather permitting: from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, and from 5:00 pm till a mutually agreed return time. All outings for the sailing season are listed on our online calendar, which you will be able to access once you are a member. All you have to do is to contact the skipper assigned to a given outing and confirm your place on the boat. Then you show up. It’s that simple.
Dress according to the forecasted weather, but be prepared for the unexpected. On warm summer days, a T-shirt and shorts will do, but bring a jacket as well in case the wind stiffens. For evening outings, bring a fleece and long pants: air temperature on the water can drop quickly once the sun goes down. If sailing early or late in the season or in changeable weather, come equipped with enough clothing that you are certain to keep warm and dry no matter what the weather throws at you.
· drinks—at least a full litre in a leak-proof container
· a lunch (for day-sailing)
· sunscreen lotion that blocks both UVA and UVB rays
· sunglasses that filter out both UVA and UVB rays
· a strap to hold your glasses in place
· a cap or hat with a wide brim and a chin strap
· short-fingered sailing gloves (cycling gloves will work, too)
· personal medications
· a flashlight or headlamp, if sailing at night
· shoes with non-marking soles to be worn only aboard the boats
· a swim suit and towel, if you think you might swim
· on wet days (yes, we sail in the rain), bring a full change of clothing in a waterproof bag or duffel
· your PCOC card, if you want to take a turn at the helm (there’s more information about this requirement on the “Becoming a Member” page of our website)
· lots of enthusiasm
The skipper will sign you in and introduce you to the boat. You will learn the proper way to board a boat and how to move about it safely. You will be shown where to store your gear and how to use the head (marine toilet). You will learn the location and proper use of safety equipment. Together with the skipper and crew, you will go over the pre-departure checklist to ensure the boat is ship-shape and seaworthy. The skipper will then explain the departure procedure (it varies, depending on the conditions) and assign you your role during this manoeuvre. If you are a newbie, the skipper and experienced crew will teach you basic crewing tasks once the boat is under way. Your day will be a mixture of learning, work and relaxation.
· wear appropriate clothing
· arrive on time
· inform the skipper of any medical conditions and/or your swimming ability, if these are an issue
· carry out the duties assigned to you by the skipper
· obey the skipper, always
· if in doubt, ask first
· leave the boat clean and orderly
· exercise care for the safety and comfort of everyone on board, including yourself
For more information, please contact us at info@VoileBorealis.org.