Open House: Introductory Sails at the Cal Sailing Club
124 University Avenue at the Berkeley Marina
www.cal-sailing.org (no phone: we like it that way!)
Ever wonder about those dazzling sails buzzing around on the Bay? The Cal Sailing Club monthly Open House/Introductory Sail gives you a chance to find out! Cost: zero. Fun: limitless.
The Cal Sailing Club (CSC) offers sailing to the public aboard our fleet of keelboats (large and stable) and dinghies (fast and zippy, but kinda tippy) ten times a year. Whether you are new at sailing or an “old salt,” you can enjoy a spectacular voyage within sight of the University of California, the Bay Bridge, San Francisco, and the Golden Gate!
CSC is an independent, non-profit cooperative; our popular Open Houses are a great way to get a free sail of around ½ hour in one of the most beautiful settings on the planet -- and to learn about boat and waterfront safety, Bay ecology, and the fun of non-motorized watercraft.
Dates for 2023 Open House
- Saturday April 22 coincides with Berkeley Bay Festival
- Sunday May 7
- Sunday June 4
- Sunday July 16
- Sunday August 20
- Sunday September 3
- Sunday October 1
- Sunday November 19
Almost all Open Houses are held from 1-3 pm Sunday afternoons (and sometimes on Saturday to coincide with other activities at the Marina). Sign up in front of the club house between 1-2:30. Full schedule is above.
How can I sign up?
Rides are given on a first-come-first-served basis by volunteer CSC members. Please try to arrive at 1 pm when the signups begin at the table. On nice days we get lots of visitors. If the tide is dropping, we may have to end sailing earlier than 3 pm, though we try our best to get everyone aboard.
Is it safe?
One of the main reasons we do this is to teach the safest possible boating practices, including the most important--always wearing a personal flotation device (lifejacket) when boating. Nonetheless, there is some risk inherent in sailing, including the possibility of ending up in the water if your dinghy tips over. We require all participants to sign a waiver (click here to read the waiver for those 18 years old and older; click here to read the waiver for parents and guardians to sign on behalf of their children under 18) stating that they understand that there are risks that they are voluntarily taking on. Our skippers are trained in safe boating, and we have radios and a rescue skiff standing by in case help is needed.
Can I bring my children?
Children must be at least 5 years of age and accompanied by an adult. We recommend that first timers, small children and not-so-agile adults sail in our larger keelboats.
What should I wear?
Bring a strap for eyeglasses or sunglasses, a string to hold your cap on, shoes that can get wet (better avoid flip flops) and comfortable clothes including a windbreaker. A change of clothes can come in handy in case you get soaked. You can borrow our foulies (heavy raincoats) and a PFD (life jacket, required).
The weather looks iffy. At what point do you cancel the event?
CSC’s first priority is boating safety. If we get heavy rain or excessive winds, we may cancel. There’s always next month!
Where are you located?
CSC is just east of the Shorebird Center, at 124 University Ave. on the Berkeley Marina, facing Emeryville, about ¼ mile before the Berkeley Pier. There’s plenty of parking for cars and bikes, and AC transit stops just opposite the club. Be sure to ask the bus driver if the bus goes to the Marina.
What is it like?
You can go on a Virtual Open House by clicking on the video below