Offshore Sailing School Chairman Steve Colgate has announced a yearlong celebration commemorating the 50-year-old sailing school. Headquartered in Fort Myers, Florida, with eight sailing vacation and commuter locations, the school has taught more than 130,000 adults and their families to sail or hone their sailing skills since Olympian and America’s Cup sailor, Colgate, founded it in 1964.
“It is hard to believe that 50 years have passed since I started Offshore Sailing School at a cocktail party in New York City with a guy who owned a cruising boat,” states Colgate. “It has been an incredibly rewarding journey.”
“We invite anyone who has taken a sailing lesson or sailing activity in the past 50 years to share their experiences and win fantastic prizes,” said Doris Colgate, president and CEO. “The contest runs through Sept. 1, 2014 and entries can be any form of artistic expression including essays, poetry, videos, photos or drawings depicting how sailing has impacted their lives,” added Doris. “This is the beginning of a year of celebrations with events, special promotions and bonuses announced each month. To commemorate this milestone, all 2014 graduates of Offshore Sailing School certification courses will also receive a limited-edition OSS 50th anniversary cap.”
The contest’s grand prize is a “priceless” private dinner with the Colgates at the exclusive New York Yacht Club in New York City. The prize package for two also includes overnight accommodations at the yacht club, a $500 American Express gift card as well as time with the Colgates to share stories of their extraordinary sailing adventures during the last 50 years.
Other prizes include a week-long private charter for four sailors aboard an OSS Jeanneau 439 with an instructor and chef, with two nights’ accommodations at the gulf-front Pink Shell Beach Resort & Marina on Fort Myers Beach, Fla.; a weeklong stay for two at South Seas Island Resort on Captiva Island, Fla. with the use of a Colgate 26 sailboat; a two-night/three-day sailing vacation for two at the Inn at Perry Cabin by Orient-Express in St. Michaels, Md. with use of a Colgate 26 sailboat; and a $500 gift card for Gill sailing apparel and accessories.
A sailor since he was 9, Colgate’s racing career includes America’s Cup Trials, the Olympics, TransAtlantic and Fastnet Races. He has completed numerous class championships and international distance races on maxi-ocean racers. Together, with his wife Doris, they have campaigned their 54-foot ocean-racer Sleuth and have enjoyed cruising all over the world.
The Colgates actively participate on several national boards and committees, including US Sailing (the governing board of sailing in the United States), Boat U.S. and Sail America. Doris founded the National Women’s Sailing Association in 1990. Steve was president of the International Sailing Schools Association from 1997 to 2003.