ASF Develops New Sailors

Page Keppel is high on sailing, learning in the ASF Opti class. Photo: Scott Keppel

Presley Keppel’s grandparents live in Seal Beach, California, and belong to Los Alamitos Bay Yacht Club. Her dad Scott says, “Every time we go to California she wants to go sailing. We asked if she wanted to try an Opti 1 class and she yelled ‘Yes!’ She loved Opti 1 and will be doing the next class in the spring.”

The Arizona Sailing Foundation (ASF) has been introducing young and not-so-young sailors to the game for over 15 years. This fall, the Opti I program for kids was sold out, with 10 children trying out the Optimist 8-foot boats, guided by instructor Natalie Harper.

Natalie picked up the program after the departure of originators Kathleen and Dan Buckstaff, who did so much to get it going. Now Natalie has told the ASF board that after the spring class she’ll need to pass it on to someone new, since she’s won a promotion at work that will require her weekends. Natalie has done a brilliant job, so it’s a big hole to fill. If you or someone you know might be a good candidate for the volunteer position, please contact ASF President Cindy Pillote.

Momma and Ducklings. The Opti I class follows the safety boat. Photo: Scott Keppel

The wind was too strong for sailing, so it was chalkboard time. Photo: Scott Keppel

Presley and Page: new Opti friends. Photo: Scott Kappel