Sailing Programs

Programs start this Spring

401-253-5000 x220 for questions

One Burnside Street 

Bristol, RI, 02809 USA

The Herreshoff Marine Museum offers unique & interactive youth and adult sailing classes for the summer and fall. The mission of the Herreshoff Seamanship Program is to teach the art of seamanship and the principles of sailing, with an emphasis on excellent instruction, as well as the design, beauty, and unique features of these classic vessels.  All classes are taught on our Herreshoff 12 ½s – 16 foot wooden sloops with jib, main & spinnaker – or our Sea Sprite 23s on the Narragansett Bay.  Class sizes are limited and will be filled on a first come, first serve basis. 

Updated as of May 22, 2020: The Herreshoff Marine Museum based on the guidance Issued by the state of Rhode Island for summer camps has implemented the following  changes for summer sailing camp. 

We will be modifying the drop off and pick up procedures to eliminate the forming of groups of people and take into account the need for social distancing. 

All staff and campers will be screened verbally upon arrival at camp using the state’s self attestation form. Anyone who answers yes to any of the questions will not be permitted to participate in camp and be sent home. 

Visitors during the camp day. Trips to Prudence Island will not occur this summer and our popular Friday cook out and awards will be limited to staff and campers only. 

We will be utilizing “stable groups” in our program, and our groups will be based on state guidelines of 15 people or fewer. As a sailing program, our groups in a boat on the water will be smaller than that as boat groups are typically 6 people or fewer.

We will also be reducing the total number of campers per session to fewer than 50 participants.

Your child will be with the same children each day and the same instructors. They will sail on the same boat during the course of the session.  All staff will use masks during camp, and although it is not required, campers will be asked to use masks as well while sailing.  

Camp will be conducted on the waterfront and under the tent to allow for the state recommended distance of 14 feet between stable groups and personal social distancing within groups. The classroom at 17 Burnside street will not be utilized for camp activities due to its small size. Facilities will be installed on the waterfront to allow for frequent hand sanitizing and all campers will be encourage to do so multiple times per day.

All high-touch camp equipment will be sanitized multiple times per day. This will include the bathrooms in the museum and the boats we will be using in the sailing program.

Life jackets will not be provided due to the difficulty in cleaning and sanitizing them. Each sailor must provide their own life jacket. 

As we continue to learn more from the state, we will update and modify our procedures to comply with recommended practices. 

We will continue to modify our standard policies which we hope will make it easier for you to make the decision to enroll:

  • – The minimum amount required to enroll your child in summer camp to 10% down with the balance due on July 1, 2020. This should make it easier for you to hold a spot in the event that our class sizes are limited.
  • – The revised the cancellation policy as follows: Full refunds will be issued to withdrawals received before the start of the Session. In addition, we have waived the administrative fees for the 2020 season. You may also request to transfer your registration to a session later in the summer if there is space available in that session or receive full credit for for the amount paid toward the 2021 season.

We’re all waiting and hoping for good news, and now it is here. Summer camp may look different this year than it has in the past but the importance of camp in a child’s development has not changed,  the memories, friendships and shared experiences will still be created this summer on the water. Here at the Herreshoff Marine Museum we are dedicated to providing the best summer camp experience possible. We can’t control the wind but we can adjust the sails, we hope to see you this summer. 

On behalf of your museum staff, we hope you’re staying safe and sane in the midst of these uncharted waters.

Youth Programs

For ages 7-15, programs range from Spring & Fall to our Summer Seamanship Program.

Adult Programs

Never too old to learn! Join us throughout the summer for group or private lessons.


Take out the worry of ownership with our hourly or seasonal rental program.

Youth Programs

Youth Program 2022

Fun after-school and summer camp sailing programs for youth of all abilities, age 7-15.

Taught on our sailing school fleet of keel boats ranging in size from 16′ to 23′. 

Register before February 1st to receive an early registration discount.


Spring 1:

May 9 – June 1, Mondays & Wednesdays, 4:15-6:15pm. 4 weeks – $250

Spring 2:

May 10 – June 2, Tuesdays & Thursdays, 4:15-6:15pm. 4 weeks – $250


September 20 – October 13, Tuesdays & Thursdays, 4:15-6:15pm, : 5 weeks – $275


Camp Activities Highlights: Prudence Day, Sail to Hog Island, Awards & family BBQ, and family sail Fridays. Campers learn to sail on Herreshoff 12½s, Sea Sprites, Bullseyes, Hobie Cats & Bic O’pen

Sessions & Dates:

  • Session 1 – June 20 – June 24
  • Session 2 – June 27 – July 1
  • Session 3 – July 5 – July 8*
  • Session 4 – July 11 – July 15
  • Session 5 – July 18 – July 22
  • Session 6 – July 25 – July 29
  • Session 7 – August 1 – August 5
  • Session 8 – August 8 – August 12
  • Session 9 – August 15 – August 19

*No class on July 4th

Schedule & Fees:

  • Monday – Friday: 8:45 – 3:30
  • One Week Full Day – $375
  • 2nd Week Full Day – $350
  • 3rd + Weeks Full Day – $325

Note: Includes Family Membership for one year.

Scholarships Available

  • Contact us for details and applications

Instructor-In-Training Program:

  • Contact us to learn more


Has your child always wanted to learn to fly? Here’s their chance! New for 2020 The Herreshoff Marine Museum has teamed up with Fulcrum Speedworks to offer Fulcrum Flight School – UFO Foiling Clinics this summer at the museum for sailors ages 12 – 15 with previous dinghy sailing experience.​

Foiling is no longer just for highly-trained professionals on Moths and America’s Cup yachts. Foiling is for everyone, including junior sailors, and the UFO is the ideal platform for learning how to foil. Fulcrum Speedworks, builders of the foiling UFO, will be offering a total of 4 clinic days this summer. *The days are scheduled during sessions 2, 4, 6, and 8 of the Herreshoff Summer Sailing Program and are coached by a member of the Fulcrum Speedworks coaching staff. 

Fulcrum Flight School Highlights:

  • Learn how to foil on the most accessible and easiest to use foiling dinghy on the market, the foiling UFO.
  • Professional coaching from a staff member at Fulcrum Speedworks, builders of the foiling UFO.
  • Class size will be limited to 3-4 foiling students. We’ve found foiling can be very tiring when you’re just getting started, so we’ll be switching sailors on and off one UFO. Switching off the UFO and watching another student foil allows the learning to continue while you catch your breath.
  • Plus with junior sailors the UFO can be sailed one, two or even three up depending on sailor size.
  • And to get smaller sailors started on the path to success the coach can come along for the ride, too. 

This summer 16 lucky kids are going to have the time of their lives! Is it going to be yours? Sign up today for the Fulcrum Flight School as part of the Herreshoff Summer Sailing Program. Questions? Contact Kirk Cusic at

Adult Sailing

Never too old to learn something new

Most Popular Classes: 

Learn to Sail with Beginner & Intermediate classes

Women’s Night

Family & Friends Sail


Summer Lessons

  • Beginner: Tues/Thur 5:30 – 8pm starting June 7 through August 25
  • Intermediate: Mon/Wed 5:30 – 8pm starting June 6 through August 24
  • Women’s Sail: Wednesdays 5:30 – 8pm starting June 1 through August 24
  • Family & Friends Sail: Weeknights 5:30-8pm starting June 1 through September 30



  • Beginner & Intermediate: Six weeknight classes for $275
  • Women’s Sail: $50 per class
  • Family & Friends Sail: $150 for up to 4 people per sail

Note: All Packages expire at the end of the season.


Private Lessons Available

  • Weekdays or Weekends
  • Rates are per person per lesson and can be scheduled by contacting Kirk Cusic, Education Director, at or by calling 401-253-5000 x220.

Sailboat Rental Program

Affordable Rentals

Take part in our unique rental program of our Herreshoff 12½s and fiberglass boats! All boats utilized in the Sailing School are available for rental. Participants must join the Museum at the Columbia level and take a checkout sail with a sailing instructor to demonstrate sailing ability. Have a great summer sailing without all the hassle of boat ownership!


  • Affordable hourly/seasonal rates
  • Unlimited FREE guests
  • Stable, seaworthy, & easy to sail boats!
  • Seasprite Racing Season Charter available

Book a Rental


Kirk Cusic

Education Director 

401-253-5000 x 220