Home » Stay’s’l Sea and Science Program

Stay’s’l Sea and Science Program


Who: Grade 5 – Grade 12
When: June 25 – August 17, 2018 (8:30 AM – 4:30 PM)
Where:  Ocean Point Marina, East Boothbay, Maine
Cost:  $550/2 week session
Financial assistance available

Participant Enrollment/Session: Minimum of 2 participants. There will be four 2-week themed sessions.  Students may enroll in more than one (sequentially or not) 2-week session as desired.

Free Day: June 21 & June 22 is “Follow Me to BSSC” week.  Select a half-day and come for free!


The Stay’s’l Program is the first of two levels in BSSC’s sea and science program. Participants work and learn as a team, improve social skills and develop new lifelong friendships. Combining onshore instruction and onboard execution, the instructor is aboard for immediate feedback. This program’s primary objectives focus on maritime safety and practical seamanship, including technical terminology, winds and sail trim, helming, VHF radio operation, and effective teamwork. All programs incorporate an appreciation, understanding and respect of the marine environment that includes but is not limited to: Weather; Intertidal Ecology; Oceanography and responsible Ocean Stewardship.

Each session will focus on a variety of topics including weather, basic boating and sailing skills, local marine life and responsible marine stewardship.  Each session highlights topics related to the theme.

Session I: June 25 – July 6:
Farmer of the Sea: Exploring Maine Aquaculture

This two-week session explores the aquaculture industries along the Damariscotta River. From seaweeds to oysters the participants will meet the farmers along the River and learn how sea life is farmed. This session focuses on learning about the marine microbial food chain and its importance to Maine aquaculture species, collecting and analyzing water samples, interacting with scientists and members of the aquaculture industry (farmers and aqua-culturists) and exploring different career paths within aquaculture.

Session II: July 9 – July 20:
Points of View: Art and Science of Sailing

This two-week session focuses on the interaction between sail and hull design and its relationship to recreational boating and scientific research. In this session, participants will gain a better understanding of the use of sailboats as working platforms for exploration and inquiry and a historical perspective of their impact on maritime art, music, and folklore. Participants will learn how to create Seascape watercolor paintings as well as spend time learning sailing techniques and seamanship skills necessary for data collection such as net tows and other scientific sampling methods to gain a better understanding of the Damariscotta River habitats. A local sailmaker, marine architect, artists and scientists will help unravel the mysteries and wonders of the art and science of sailing.

Session III: July 23 – August 3:
Hook, Line and Sinker: Gulf of Maine Fisheries

This two-week session investigates how people use, consume, and manage the harvesting of sea life from the Gulf of Maine. Hands-on activities will include lobster trap hauling and fishing (catch and release) and the proper handling and preparing of various types of fish and seafood overseen by a local chef and a local entrepreneur in the food industry. Participants will gain an understanding of how and why humans affect the marine food web.

Session IV:  August 6 – August 17:
Tech and Trash: Marine Technology and Marine Debris

This two-week session highlights the different types of ocean technology, including, submersibles and remote operated vehicles (ROVs) and how they can be used to explore and understand the ocean. BSSC will provide hands-on opportunities to build and study the use of these technologies, and bring awareness to problems associated with marine debris from the surface to the sea floor.


  • Pass a swim test at the Center.
  • Parents / Guardians must present signed Registration forms, Liability Waiver, and Medical forms before participants begin the program.
  • Parents / Guardians and students must jointly sign “Code of Conduct” before the start of the program.

The Boat:
The primary teaching sailboat for this program is the Sonar, a fast 23 ft sloop that performs well in light winds but with a 900 lbs keel is both stiff but able to surf in heavier winds. It is a fun and safe day sailor and has been used in many national championship regattas such as Adams Cup, Sears Cup, Prince of Wales, Cowes Week and many others. The 11 1/2 ft self-bailing cockpit can seat eight with leg room to spare while angled seat backs and coamings are designed for comfort when heeled. It is an ideal boat for beginning sailors and racers as well as family day sails. With minor adaptions it is often used by disabled sailors and has been chosen for the Paralympics.