I think, therefore I am. I am, therefore I sail

Category: Footloose Sailing Association

I am a loose screw

Nearly a year ago I found the Footloose Sailing Association and started volunteering. Footloose is a non-profit organization that helps disabled, and those who otherwise would not be able to, get out on the water in sailboat.

When I showed up to my first event I did not know what to expect. Bob, the Footloose President, warmly welcomed me to the group. Bob is in a wheelchair but that has not stopped him from becoming a master sailor. He even has his own sailboat rigged for him to solo sail!

I will never forget the first group I took out as the crew member on a Columbia 22. One of the ladies is in her mid 40s and was born with a condition that has kept her small and all bent over to the side. She cannot talk and kinda drools a bit. She also is in a wheelchair. This particular lady has been attending Footloose sailing events for several years. When we tossed those sails up and turned off the motor she got the biggest grin on her face and started giggling. Such joy had me hooked!

I love bringing people joy. Footloose sailing season is only during the nicer weather of the summer months. I volunteered at nearly every event, only missing for my wedding. Bob asked me to join the Board and I am now working on revamping the website and performing maintenance upgrades on the Columbia 22s.

Footloose has a traditional award they hand out at the Winter Party called the Loose Screw Award. Each year two (typically) volunteers are selected as the most outstanding volunteers of the year. This Ken and myself were chosen to receive the honor.

Apparently I am a loose screw. Not that anyone had doubts before, but now it is official!

It has been my extreme honor to work with the Footloose group and I am looking forward to participating for many years to come.

The 2016 season is starting up again in a few weeks. I am incredibly excited! Come out and join us for a sailing event sometime.

footloose_loose_screw_2016

The boats of Footloose

The Footloose Sailing Association is an arm of Disabled Sports USA that operates out of Seattle, Washington. Footloose gets people, who otherwise would not be able to, out on the water in a sailboat in a safe environment. Footloose has several boats, all which have been modified in some manner to provide for a safe sailing experience for all disabilities.

Some of the boats we have are:

See the fleet at http://footloosedisabledsailing.org/our-fleet

 

Footloose 2015 Blake Island Trip

IMG_1407This year I joined the Footloose Sailing Association in Seattle. The entire goal of Footloose is to get people who would not normally be capable of boating, let alone the work required for sailing, out on the water and sailing.

Each season Footloose does a trip for the participants to Blake Island, a 475 acre state park. It is about 8 miles from downtown Seattle and the only way there is by private boat, no ferry or bridge.

This last weekend I had the privilege of hosting part of the group on my boat. We had 5 boats, 9 participants, and many volunteers head out to the island. It was a big undertaking but the participants got so much joy out of it that I am already looking forward to next year.

 

Footloose 2015 Mercer Island Parade

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