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CHARLES MILL LAKE -- Prospective amateur sailors who sign up for classes presented by the Mohican Sailing Club should come prepared to learn the lingo and tie the knots.
But there's more in store, like stories and the occasional poem.
"It's a lot of fun," said club member Erwin Riedner. "It's hands-on, but it's a lot of fun. We tell stories. We exaggerate when necessary."
Riedner is one of the instructors of the classes, offered next month in both Wooster and Mansfield. He was a veteran sailor when he moved to Wooster from Baltimore several years ago. Since he could find no place to put in his boat, he instead opted to sell it. He took a sale flier to Murr Printing & Graphics and was told by store owner Joe Murr that a number of locals sailed on the Mohican Sailing Club waters at Charles Mill Lake.
And Riedner's boat eventually sold to Stewart Fitz Gibbon, who also made the drive to Charles Mill Lake from Wooster.
Boats are in the water from May until late October, though neither class participants nor club members need to own one to join in the sport. "There are six boats that the members can use as they want to," said Murr, and that also are available for students.
Charles Mill is a great place for sailing and learning sailing, Riedner said, because there's a 10-horsepower limit for motors, which means the waters are typically calm and fairly quiet. Smaller boats, like the Sunfish, can be handled by a single sailor, while larger boats require a crew, which he said is a great way to sharpen the sailing skills learned in class.
But the club is about more than just being on the water. "It's very communal," Riedner said, with a potluck dinner each Sunday in the clubhouse. "There's just a lot of camaraderie, a lot of joking around."
CLASS DATES AND TIMES:
In Wooster on May 8, 15 and 22, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Local Roots Market and Cafe
In Mansfield on May 2 and 4 from 6-8 p.m. at the Ontario Branch of the Richland County Public Library
On-water instruction: Charles Mill Lake on Wednesday, May 24, and individually after noon on Sundays, May 14 through June 25.
COURSE COST: $25 per person
WHERE: Mohican Sailing Club
Charles Mill Lake
2187 Mifflin Township Road 1265
ABOUT THE CLUB: Formed in 1945 to provide a site for sailing in Central Ohio. Land was leased from the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District. The club has a cottage-style clubhouse with full kitchen and bar and a ballroom for carry-in dinners and social events. Other facilities include a concrete boat ramp, boat hoist and three 40-plus-foot docks.
NUMBER OF MEMBERS: 40 memberships, covering 100 people
MEMBERSHIP FEE: $375 per family
FOR MORE INFORMATION, on the classes or club membership, go to www.mohicansailingclub.org.
Reporter Tami Mosser can be reached at 330-287-1655 or firstname.lastname@example.org. She is @tamimosser on Twitter.