Powerboat Show Brings New Boat-Handling Courses to Annapolis

The Annapolis Boat Shows are just weeks away, and the United States Powerboat Show, coming October 11-14, is bringing something new to the table. For the first time, on-water boating courses will be offered to adults and teens as young as 13.

Annapolis Boat Shows, the BoatUS Foundation, Freedom Boat Club and West Marine have lined up U.S. Coast Guard-certified instructors to teach Introduction to Boating and Women Making Waves, a ladies-only boating course, which are three hours long. The $149 cost of each includes boat show admission. Class size is limited to four students per vessel, and students will be learning on Freedom Boat Club Annapolis’ 20- 26-foot powerboats.

There is also a new program just for teens ages 13 to 19. It’s 90 minutes long, and class size is limited to three teens per vessel, so that each student gets sufficient time at the helm. They’ll be learning on 14-foot rigid hull inflatables. The $99 cost also includes boat show admission.

All three of the courses will teach students how to center the wheel and steer, shift and control the throttle, understand the “weathervane” effect, and use “the boater’s eye” technique to safely navigate.

Annapolis Boat Shows President Paul Jacobs says the on-water courses offered at the United States Sailboat Show have become so popular, he wanted to bring the same experience to the powerboat crowd.

“Each fall, our sailboat show sees over nine hundred active participants in programs like First Sail Workshops, Take the Wheel, and Cruisers University. Adding the on-water training provided by the BoatUS Foundation will create similar learning opportunities for powerboaters.”

The courses are offered Thursday, October 11 through Sunday, October 14. Space for all three courses is limited. Click here to see the time slots being offered for each course and to sign up.

Chesapeake Bay Magazine is proud to produce the official United States Powerboat Show Guide. For the full program of events, click here.

For the official guide to the United State Sailboat Show October 4-8, click here.

-Meg Walburn Viviano