At its strategic perch overlooking Offatts Bayou, Sea Scout Base Galveston (SSBG) resembles a five-star hotel beckoning guests to stop in. But looks can be deceiving.
At Sea Scout Base Galveston, the sea is an extraordinary classroom that provides hands-on opportunities for youth to learn and build character through challenging, rewarding, hands-on experiences.
Exploring the diverse natural wonders of the marine environment, mastering the maritime skills to navigate the open ocean, and discovering the value of teamwork as part of a unified crew are just a sampling of the unique base’s offerings.
“In Galveston it’s pretty important that we want to make the water and water activities available to everyone in the community,” said Sara Moran, events and marketing coordinator at SSBC. “We use a lot of different programs, either in education or in our sailing program that are low cost. “It lets people who maybe would not have the means to normally go sailing to have that opportunity to do that and learn while out on the water,” she said.
The base is the brainchild of husband-and-wife team Charles and Rosemary Doolin, who have transformed their vision of teaching young people about the sea into a multi-million-dollar, state-of-the-art facility at 7905 Broadway.
The base hosts an incredible range of quality programs for Sea Scouts, including kayaking, small and large boat sailing, and power boating. What’s more, marine and maritime education and internships for all ages are conducted aboard a 110-foot, two-story floating classroom called the BaySmart Express.
“We have focuses on maritime sciences and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math),” Moran said. “We want to increase people’s enjoyment of that field because we need more people in that field.
“Specifically for Galveston maritime it’s great because we’re a port and a great industry for people to go into without having to get a bachelor’s degree,” she said. “A large percentage of the maritime workforce is about to retire, so there’s going to be a high demand for those jobs in the coming years.”
This year, the SSBG’s summer camp hosted more than 300 students, Moran said.
Here’s some of the other innovative programs offered at Sea Scout Base Galveston:
Galveston Community Youth Sailing Center
From adult and youth sailing, to adaptive sailing for the disabled, the Galveston Community Youth Sailing Center (GCYSC) offers a wide variety of sailing classes and programs for every age and ability level. Programs are held on a diverse fleet of vessels, including: 13-foot FJs, 23-foot Sonars, match racing Pearson flyers, a historic style schooner and several large offshore vessels. Anyone can sign up.
GCYSC is a US Sailing®-sanctioned Community Sailing Center offering memberships for individuals and families. GCYSC places special emphasis on teaching youth and disabled individuals the art of sailing. The adaptive sailing program provides instruction for sailors of all levels with a variety of disabilities, and is integrated with the Sea Scout Program for Disability Awareness training.
All instructors are US Sailing-Certified licensed captains. Nautical skills are taught and practiced during weekly US Sailing Classes, Open Sail Saturdays and Schooner Sundays. GCYSC invites Galveston Island to enjoy a wonderful and affordable opportunity to share a love of the ocean across generations through true community sailing.
Scouting: Where Scouts and the Sea Come Together
In partnership with the Bay Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America, SSBG offers Scouts from all over the United States a world-class destination for high adventure maritime programs. Scouting programs, such as Summer Nautical Adventures, Boy Scout merit badge classes, Cub Scout belt loop & pins, Sea Scout Safety at Sea, are filled with challenging activities that give Scouts a sense of accomplishment and independence.
Events Are Always Better By the Sea
The base also serves as a unique training facility for Galveston College culinary arts students to learn the business of hosting conferences, meetings, weddings and virtually any other type of event. SSBG provides all of the functionality and amenities needed to make your event a success.
The scenic views and beautifully landscaped grounds provide an aesthetically pleasing backdrop that will transform your event into an experience that your guests will never forget. Best of all, Galveston College culinary arts students receive valuable hands on experience while facility rental fees help support our scouting, sailing, marine and maritime education programs.
For more information about Sea Scout Base Galveston, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 409-572-2560.