Newbies and Yacht Clubs....
I know I'm fixing to get flamed but there's something I want to point out.
I been reading that interest in sailing seems to be on the downslide. Just not many new people getting involved. It occured to me that maybe sailors are our own worst enemies.
I recently was in another city and took the opportunity to visit a local club. There were a lot of sailboats and lots of people around them. But, the security gate was closed, no one answered the intercom AND despite trying to flag down some of the people that were coming and going NO ONE stopped or even made an attempt to be friendly or acknowledge that I was there. I was actually there to pass along information for a regatta I promote but that is another story.
I've read multiple times where the advice given to someone that was interested in learning to sail was to head out to the local "club" and ask to crew on someones boat. Ask questions and respectfully roam the docks looking for people on their boats. By this adivce we are led to believe that sailors love to talk about their boats. My experience with this particular club has been repeated a couple of times at other places and is contrary to the advice given to people that are interested in the sport.
With the regatta I promote (totally a non-profit deal) you wouldn't believe the trouble we have getting the area clubs to even acknowledge that we have an event. There are a few that do manage to put it in a news letter but there are a lot of others that won't even respond to an e-mail to say "no thanks, not interested."
With that being said I'm beginning to wonder if maybe we are our own worst enemies when it comes to sharing our sport with new people? If I had not already been a sailor with my own boat I would certainly have been turned off of EVER wanting to get a sailboat or learn to sail by the way the club members have acted towards me when I was around these various "clubs". I'm also wondering if others have had similar experiences when away from their home ports and just wandering around trying to make friends with the local? Shouldn't we have a little more respect for people when they inquire about our favorite passion?
Last edited by NCountry; 01-22-2009 at 01:39 PM.
Reason: spelling was the pits......