On the Water Club seeks to introduce youth to aquatic adventures

Sherry Hamilton - Posted on Feb 27, 2019 - 02:37 PM

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Gwynn’s Island resident Geoffrey Uelmen grew up sailing, and now he wants to bring that experience to the youth of the Middle Peninsula with the Mathews Maritime Foundation’s new On the Water Club.

Skipper Uelmen said the club, which is designed for children and young adults aged 12-20, will give youth the opportunity to explore the waters of the Middle Peninsula in boats large and small. With the support of the Mathews Yacht Club and U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary #66 of Mathews, Uelmen and other MMF volunteers will lead participants in a range of activities, from tying knots and fishing to paddling along local rivers and creeks to participating in regattas.

“We are inviting all who live on the Middle Peninsula to participate,” said John Bonner of the Mathews Maritime Foundation.

There is no cost to join the program, but registration, current health status, and parental consent are required, said a press release. Parents are encouraged to participate in all activities, and volunteers are welcome to share their knowledge and experience.

Uelmen is also skipper for the Mathews Maritime Sea Scouts, a Boy Scouts of America program for all youth aged 14-20. The recently chartered program requires registration and dues of $33 a year, said the release. Just as in any scouting program, Sea Scouts members engage in activities that lead to earning badges based on the acquisition of skills in a broad range of areas.

The Sea Scouts and the On the Water Club will have a working weekend to get the sailing vessel “Intrigue” ready for recommissioning on Saturday and Sunday, March 23 and 24, at the Islander Marina on Gwynn’s Island. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For more information about these programs and a schedule of events, visit https://seascout.org. To sign up for events or request one, email mathewsotwclub@gmail.com or info@mathewsmaritime.com.