Nearly two dozen young sailors have jumped aboard an upstart Mathews Club Sailing team that is looking to establish itself in its first year of operation.
The program is the only one of its kind in Mathews, Gloucester, or the Northern Neck, said club director Craig Ciszewski. Sailing is not sanctioned by the Virginia High School League, so while the club operates and competes in the same manner as a conventional sports team, funding must be totally sourced privately.
Startup costs for sailing are high relative to other sports, as boats, dry suits, rigging, and other equipment all need to be purchased. However, Ciszewski has made affordability for athletes a primary goal and thanks to a host of private donations and fundraising the sailors can compete for a full season for $72. For context, a competition dry suit alone would normally cost a sailor $300.
Funds have been generated entirely from individual contributions thus far, but Ciszewski announced Monday that the club will b...