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Old 05-10-2007
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I originally signed up for the ASA Keelboat course in 2005, which at the time was a two-day class. I happened to plan it the weekend of Katrina, so needless to say we only got one day of the class in, on a 37 ft Catalina Capri. On the second day we were all high-tailing it to higher ground.

When the local company that was hosting the classes resumed them last fall, they were using a new 3 hour block system. The one day I already had counted as a 101 and a 102, and I still had had credit left for two more 102 blocks - which I took last October. They had sold the Capri and are now using Beneteau 7.5's (fast!)

Since then I've bought a boat and haven't followed up, I still think I need one more 102 class before I can get take basic keelboat certification.

For somebody with little or no experience, I'd say it's worth it. That all of course depends on the instructor. The instructor that I managed to sail with each time had decades of experience. When we came back in to drop of a student, he had us come all the way into and back out of the slip with sail power only... not a zip-in/zip-out procedure in post-Katrina Municipal Harbor ("careful, watch that mast sticking up there"). I wonder how many people have tacked out of West End in a 26 footer. In other words, you may very well gain experience in situations that you wouldn't even think about otherwise. Plus, you'll meet people of similar interests and experience level.

Last fall, a 3 hour block cost $50. I doubt a lot of $ is being made by the host here, I think the intent is to drum up business, whether it be sales or charters/rentals. To spend less than $20 an hour with a pro was a pretty good deal in my book.
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