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Ever Heard Of A Sea Scout?

Have you heard of a Sea Scout?

Well, just in case you haven’t, Sea Scouts is part of Venturing. Its members focus on sailing, maritime skills, and of course, having fun.

Cool, huh?

A Little History Lesson for You

Like Scouting itself, Sea Scouting began in England in 1911. It came to the United States in 1912. That year, Arthur A. Carey of Waltham, Massachusetts, had Sea Scouts using the schooner Pioneer. Charles T. Longstreth organized a Sea Scout patrol on his yacht in Philadelphia.

Today, Sea Scouts has evolved into playing a unique role in Scouting by teaching maritime skills to 473 ships nationwide (a ship is the Sea Scouting term for a unit), and in Ship 185’s case, the focus is on competitive racing.

Southern Yacht Club, Home To The 1991 & 2011 J/22 Worlds

Welcome Sailors
Southern Yacht Club, host of the race, welcomes the teams. (Photo by Patrick B., Patrol Z Staff Reporter)

Southern Yacht Club, on Louisiana’s Lake Pontchartrain, the second largest inland saltwater lake in the United States, was home to the 2011 J/22 World Championship sailing competition last October. The club, which is also the second oldest yacht club in America, hosted the first unofficial “Worlds” J/22 race in 1991. Since SYC’s founding in 1849, its sailors have won four Olympic medals—two gold and two silver. Its first gold medal, won in 1932, was also the first Olympic medal in sailing for the United States.

The J/22, a Racing Sailboat

The standard, international J/22 sailboat is a 22-foot racer that nearly 65 fleets across the world sail. According to its builder, J-Boats, “People say the J/22 is the best sailing boat they’ve ever been on.”

Sea Scout Ship 185

Staying true to maritime racing while still having fun, the Sea Scouts of Ship 185 say, “Our main focus is racing, but sometimes we do some cruising, mostly to kick back and relax after a stressful day of a sailing series.”

Two of the ship’s sailboats raced in the 2011 Worlds: the Jabberwocky, which placed 63rd, and the Delirium, which placed 64th.

Although both crews were far from first place, what they accomplished is outstanding, considering they were up against professional sailors from around the world. Through the J/22 Worlds, Scouting has again created an adventure of a lifetime.

Sailing may not be one of your activities at the Summit Bechtel Reserve, but there won’t be any shortage of water sports! What water sport would you love to see at the 2013 Jamboree?

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