PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Dropping The Anchor On Penn State’s Sailing Season

There are hundreds of clubs at Penn State and dozens of sports, both varsity and club, and though many are by field or court, there’s one by sea. Though you might not expect to find student boaters in Central Pennsylvania, Penn State’s Club Sailing Team just finished its season of regatta competitions last weekend.

Penn State Sailing is nothing new for its Commodore (naval lingo for president), Sarah Culp. Growing up, Culp attended summer camps to learn about sailing for several years leading up to high school.

“I didn’t race in high school, but picked sailing right back up when I got to school at Penn State,” she said. “Although most people in the club don’t have prior sailing experience, let alone know that we have a sailing team here, I had known about the club beforehand and sought them out at the fall involvement fair.”

To be considered an active member of the club, students only have to fill out a participation waiver and pay the semester’s dues (in addition to having a curiosity/passion for sailing, of course).

Culp’s involvement with the club began with her freshman year here in Happy Valley.

“It’s funny how I got involved in the club so quickly. I was a freshman in 2013, I had gone to one of the first meetings, and ended up signing to host a canning trip,” Culp said. “Following that week, I had probably missed three or four meetings before I was contacted by a THON chair about hosting for canning. I attended one practice before inviting four strangers to my house, but our THON chair was so welcoming and I had so much fun that weekend that I instantly became more involved with the club.”

As a senior and Commodore of the team, Culp is in charge of overseeing all club activities, including any club events, meetings, and practices, which are held every Sunday from the start of the school year to mid-October.

If you’re wondering where club sailing actually sails and practices, you’re not alone. There really aren’t any lakes on or near campus. The club’s home water is located at Lake Glendale, about an hour away in Prince Gallitzin State Park in Patton, PA. Members keep 10 of its 14 sailboats here, with the other four stored at the crew’s alternative practicing grounds at Stone Valley Recreation Center.

Weekly practices are essential for competing in multiple regattas (a series of races) during the fall season. The team of four or five members chosen to compete at each regatta is able to travel up and down the east coast to Virginia, New York, New Jersey, and even Ontario, Canada for weekend competitions.

Unfortunately, this year proved to be more of a rebuilding season for the team.

“Right now, we are more interested in getting members out competing for experience,” Culp said. “Our scores were not great this season but we are rebuilding and working on getting more members involved and learning the art of racing.”

One of those members is freshman Fritz McVay who couldn’t be more excited to join the team this early in his collegiate career. A member of the Naval ROTC, McVay has a natural passion for being on the water, and for him, Club Sailing was the closest thing to satisfying that desire in State College. Even so, it wasn’t the sailing that stood out to him at first, but the people.

“I was most impressed with the diversity within the club,” McVay said. “Each officer is so professional and organized they end up spreading those qualities to every other member. I also appreciated the reception. There were plenty of opportunities to get to know everyone prior to starting practices and they were all extremely willing to hang out and meet the newbies.”

Culp couldn’t agree more. For her, the best part about the club is the friends she’s made over the years.

“The people make it fun! We start every meeting with ‘story time’ where members can share a story with the team,” Culp said. “It’s fun and goofy and always a great way to start off a weekly meeting. It’s just really fun to make new friends every year and share your passion with people who are willing to learn. I was inspired to take a leadership role my final semester, so I did, and it’s been a blessing ever since.”

About the Author

Pete Rinehart

Pete is a freshman hailing from Washington, PA and is currently a contributor for Onward State. He is majoring in environmental systems engineering and is a lover of politics (somehow), Mad Men, and all things soccer. Apart from playing FIFA 16 in his dorm, Pete enjoys jamming to Jimi Hendrix, watching the Steelers win, and vacationing to the Jersey shore. You follow him on Twitter @BigPete1250, or email him at [email protected]

Comments

More by Peter

Student And Staff Panel Discusses Mental Health In An Effort To Raise Awareness

Members of the Collegiate Recovery Community (CRC), Active Minds, and staff from Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) met last night to hold a panel discussion on mental health issues and related personal experiences as the third signature event during Mental Health and Wellness Week.

Women’s Soccer Defeats Bucknell 6-0 In NCAA Tournament

Reedy Shines As Men’s Soccer Defeats Wright State 1-0

Athletics

Cole Miller Misses Cut At U.S. Open

Miller finished the first two rounds of the U.S. Open at +12, missing the cut by four strokes.

Evan Barratt Invited To World Junior Summer Showcase

Several Penn State Women’s Soccer Players Training In WPSL

Top-100 Wrestler Flips From Pitt To Penn State

Maddie Elliston Named Penn State Women’s Soccer Captain

Student Life

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting At Beaver Stadium

If alumna Alex Perry hadn’t accidentally gotten into the wrong admissions line before a football game, she might never have met the love of her life.

Virtual Reality: Changing The Game At Penn State

Penn State Cracks The Top Ten In Niche’s 2018 Party School Ranking

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Freshman 101: How To Buy Football Tickets

Tickets go on sale for graduate students on Monday, June 18, followed by seniors on Tuesday, juniors on Wednesday, sophomores on Thursday, and freshmen on Friday.

Hackenberg Waived By The Raiders

Hackenberg was waived by the Raiders Tuesday only a few weeks — 21 days, to be exact — after he was traded to Oakland by the New York Jets.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting At Beaver Stadium

If alumna Alex Perry hadn’t accidentally gotten into the wrong admissions line before a football game, she might never have met the love of her life.

Send this to a friend