Rural Missouri - October 2013 - (Page 10)

Ben Jagears, right, teaches student Robert Rueter how to pick a heading and trim the sails before heading out from the marina for a private lesson on Stockton Lake. Schooled on Sailing A by Kile Brewer info@ruralmissouri.coop s you reach the main body of Stockton Lake, a quiet falls on the boat as the outboard motor coughs to a halt. The jib sheet is pulled taught and fills with wind, propelling the vessel forward with only a slight luff from the sail. The sound, or lack thereof, is comforting as the crosswind rushes through your hair and over the tops of your ears. You are sailing, gliding across the water, carefree, letting the wind and waves guide you to your destination. Whether you’re an experienced sailor or a complete beginner, the certified captains at Stockton Sailing School are sure to get you cruising around the 25,000-acre Stockton Lake in no time. Since starting the school in 2005, Captain Larry Strait has received numerous honors from the American Sailing Association (ASA). In 2009, 2010 and 2011, the school was named one of the ASA’s outstanding sailing schools, and it has been selected as one of the top 20 sailing schools in the country out of about 300 qualified schools. If you thought sailing was just for ocean-going vessels, think again. Stockton Lake is a freshwater sailor’s paradise. After the school got going, word spread and Strait was swamped with landlocked Midwesterners looking to learn a new hobby. He couldn’t turn any prospective sailors away, so he called up his friend and fellow sailor Ben Jagears and asked him to help out with the sailing classes. Jagears, a retired member of the U.S. Army Special Forces, was an obvious choice for Strait’s school. His sailing experience includes jobs as crew and captain in boats in the Caribbean, as well as working as the helmsman on dive boats based in Panama in the 1970s. Strait knew the veteran sailor would be perfect for the job. 10 “After about two years of running the school, there was so much demand he just couldn’t keep up with it,” says Jagears, a member of Ozark Electric Cooperative. “So I finally got certified by the ASA and got my captain’s license from the (United States) Coast Guard.” Together, Jagears and Strait book classes through- Basic sailing courses taught on Stockton Lake in south Missouri out almost every week during sailing season. “We sail May through June and try not to book anything in July and August,” says Jagears. “It’s just too hot and the wind isn’t there. But things pick back up in September, and then we sail until it’s too cold, which is usually late October.” The classes are two-day intensive programs that Student Robert Rueter gets a handful of rope while raising the jib, or front, sail on the Marina’s 25-foot Catalina rental boat. During the basic keelboat course, students learn to sail any single-mast vessel up to about 30 feet long. WWW.RURALMISSOURI.COOP http://WWW.RURALMISSOURI.COOP

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - October 2013

Rural Missouri - October 2013
Contents
Comments
Columns
Schooled on sailing
A deer dilemma
Outdoors
Therapy for the heart & soul
Out of the Way Eats
Gone RVing
Charge of the Iron Brigade
Hearth and Home
Underwater fun
Around Missouri
Marketplace
Neighbors
Just4Kids

Rural Missouri - October 2013

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