Junior Helm Week: 21 -25 August 2023
This is ‘THE' event in the junior calendar, when up to 80 youngsters, aged between six and sixteen attend, to either learn to sail or help others to sail. It is held in two sessions, morning and afternoon, with around forty sailors attending each session. There are two Oppie groups per session catering for beginners and improvers aged 6 to 10. The Toppers are split into two or three groups per session for the 10 to 15's, depending on ability, boats and helpers available.
For the Topper group we follow a format of four days sailing and a day of raft building. This has proved very popular giving a chance to acquire different skills on the water, whilst having a lot of fun, especially when the raft collapses in the middle of the lake! It is a very enjoyable week of fun which culminates on the final day with various activities often including orienteering, an Oppie ‘jungle safari' or a very special picnic. Be sure to book early for this event it is always very popular.
How do I apply?
Bookings and payment are usually taken during June via the WebCollect, opening and closing dates are given on the WebCollect pages. To keep within safety guidelines the numbers are limited to 80, or less if we do not have sufficient instructors and volunteers.The closing date for bookings will be in late June. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!
We need your help
Junior Helm Week has always relied heavily on volunteer helpers. Safety on and off the water is the highest priority. We need instructors, first aiders, support boat helms and willing hands for collecting, counting, unpacking, rigging, launching, making tea and a myriad of other activities that go into making the week a success. We value the experience of those who have helped in previous years and welcome new volunteers who will be shown exactly what to do – no experience necessary! We do ask parents to help on at least two days but if you can do more that would be grand.
What is it all about?
Junior Helm Week has been a central event in the club calendar since its conception in 1982 by the late Bob Ferguson, CMYC Commodore 1982-87. The first event took place from the Mill Lane end of the lake before our present clubhouse was built. Initially members used their own boats to introduce young people to sailing but since 1987 the club has hired boats. Now of course we can supplement these with our own club junior fleet of Toppers and Oppies. The emphasis during the week is on fun rather than formal instruction. Bob's Junior Helm Week continues to flourish and the Bob Ferguson trophy is awarded to the Optimist sailor who improves the most during the week.