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Ground School

We really don't want to scare anyone away with the term "school," and we promise not to give you a test at the end. These FREE lessons are an introduction to the club's, layout, safety rules, instruction program, and fun, social events. While attending a Ground School is required for members prior to their first lesson, Ground Schools are open to non-members as well - so be sure to bring a friend!

After a brief video presentation, your friendly and knowledgeable instructor will guide you on a tour of the facilities and lakefront, highlight certain aspects of our programs, and answer any questions you may have. The club offers Ground School lessons about three or four times per week during the peak season.

  • Due to our new pier system we are in the process of updating our Ground School Curriculum. We will be scheduling new Ground School sessions soon.

Intro to Sailing

The Intro to Sailing lesson, added to the instruction program in 2009, is an exciting new addition to the Hoofer lesson flowchart. This is the first lesson that a student takes after Ground School and is a prerequisite for Tech A lessons and any Keelboat lessons (although not required for Windsurfing A). The purpose of this three-hour lesson is to get new club members on the water quickly to start the learning process and become acquainted with the basics of sailing before continuing lessons on other fleets.

The Intro to Sailing lesson includes one instructor to a maximum of six students all aboard the same boat, which is usually a Badger Sloop or small keelboat. While having fun on the water and getting to know some fellow Sailing Club members, you will learn rigging, sailing theory, parts of a boat, and will have the opportunity to take the helm and practice some basic sailing maneuvers. Most of the lesson time is spent on the water, and it's possible that you may get a bit wet, so please dress accordingly.

For those who have never sailed before, we recommend watching this short introductory video:

If you have already completed ground school and have paid for your new membership, check the Lessons Page for an Intro to Sailing Lesson. Don't forget, new lessons for the following week are posted on Thursdays at 9 p.m.

Still have questions, please contact the Vice-Commodore at


After completing the Intro to Sailing Lesson, the next step in learning how to sail dinghies (the smaller boats, less than 20 feet) starts with the Techs. The goal of the Tech lessons is to get your Light Tech Rating so that you can start taking 420, Laser, Byte, Scow and Sloop Lessons.


If members do not wish to begin with dinghies but would prefer to jump right into the Keelboat Fleet, the next step would be to sign up for an Intro to Keelboat Sailing lesson. Don't forget, new lessons for the following week are posted on Thursdays at 9 p.m.

Still have questions, please contact the Vice-Commodore at, or one of the Keelboat Captains at and