" "

ENE Blog: Growing Under Sail

By Tom Richardson
Fall River kids navigate the waters of the Taunton River under the watchful eyes of Sail Rec instructors.

On a steamy mid-July day, we had a great time filming with the instructors and budding sailors at the Sail Rec community sailing program on the Taunton River in Fall River, Massachusetts. The program is part of the Greater Fall Rive Re-Creation, whose goal is to provide access to provide “diverse programs and unique opportunities to the community’s residents, focusing on socioeconomically disadvantaged children.”

Program Director Chris Nardi at the helm of a Sail Rec safety boat.

Program director Chris Nardi let us tag along as the kids in this session learned the basics of boat rigging, sails, and parts then hit the water aboard the fleet of small prams and larger Ensigns. In short order, they were zipping across the Taunton River just off Battleship Cove as the instructors shouted instructions from their powerboats.

A young sailor tends the tiller with an expert eye to the wind.

As Nardi explained during our interview, the program is about much more than learning how to sail; it also instills confidence and pride, as well as camaraderie, among the kids, many of whom return year after year. Some even become instructors themselves.

The Sail Rec program also relies on classroom instruction to teach the basics of sailing.

Sail Rec isn’t just for kids, however. It’s also open to adults who want to learn how to sail, as well as experienced sailors looking for affordable access to a sailboat. The center, located at Heritage State Park Boathouse on the Taunton River, maintains a fleet of small prams, as well as larger multi-person vessels. Click here for a list of the different sailing programs offered and the pricing.

It can get a bit chaotic on the water, but the Sail Rec instructors work hard to keep it fun.
Explore New England