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Sailing: Local yacht club sets annual flagship regatta

In 1956, a small group of sailboat enthusiasts who had been members of the Dallas Yacht Club at White Rock Lake decided to start a new club on Lewisville Lake, and the Dallas Corinthian Yacht Club was established.

Now, 57 years later, the club is still going strong and preparing to play host to its biggest event of the year, the annual flagship regatta with a new name and a different direction for the proceeds.

On Friday, Saturday and Sunday the DCYC will hold the Corinthian Heritage Cup Regatta with the proceeds to benefit local organizations as well funding the junior sailing program the club offers.

In 2011, the club started the youth program under the direction of board member Michele Ditmer and coaches Kelly Holmes and Ryan Schwend. In the year and a half since the program was established, full-time membership has grown to 15. The program includes weekly classroom time to teach the concept and rules of sailing, how to rig a boat as well as on-the-water practice sessions with coaches and participation in local, region and national regattas for youth.

“We had a youth program once before, but it was really about pizza parties and not about sailing,” said Ditmer, a 17-year member of DCYC. “When we started the program again, we wanted to offer sailing lessons to the kids, and now it has developed into classes with three different levels of instruction.”

Classes are held Tuesday and Thursday afternoons at the yacht club throughout the year as well as two weeklong day camps during the summer.

“Last year I was taking two or three calls a week from people interested in the summer camps, and I expect an even bigger response this year,” Ditmer said. “We really expect to see growth in both our weekly classes as well as the camps in the future.”

This year’s camps are scheduled for June 10-14 and June 8-11 for the higher level youth sailors. The weekly classes as well as the summer camps are open to both members and non-DCYC members. The weekly classes are $100 for a six-week session and $125 for the Level 3 class. The summer camps are $275 for members and $325 for non-members.

For more information about the DCYC or the weekly classes and the summer camps, visit www.dcyc.org .