Your source for premier boating education.  A variety of courses are offered by the Cape Fear Sail & Power Squadron and all are available to the public.

Start with America's Boating Course® which covers the basics of boating and meets the certification requirements in NC for those under age 26.  

Then continue with the following:

Cape Fear Boating Club educational offerings:

These should be taken in sequence: These may be taken at any time:   
 America's Boating Course® Marine Communications Systems


Marine Electrical Systems


Engine Maintenance

 Advanced Piloting 

Junior Navigation Sail
Navigation Cruise Planning

Electronic Navigation

Instructor Development

Get more information about these courses (click) and the many seminars (click) available from the

United States Power Squadrons® 

Course Description
Sail Class: Member cost: $55.00 - Non-member cost: $75.00 Location: Cape Fear Community College U-529
Date and Time: Sep 12 - Oct 31, 6:30-8:30

We are pleased to announce our USPS Sail course has been scheduled to begin on Tuesday night, September 12.

 The course will run 8 Tuesday nights from 6:30PM – 8:30 PM ending on October 31 and be presented at the community college – free on-campus parking in their street level lighted parking lot. Ed Kreul, AP,  will be the lead instructor aided by a team of experienced and gifted sailing assistants. Knowing Ed and his assistants, this promises to be a highly informative course presented in a casual and relaxed manner. Here is a brief description. 

Sail is a course created to serve the needs of the novice and experienced sailor, as well as the non-sailor, for basic skills and knowledge. The course starts with basic sailboat designs and nomenclature, rigging, safety, and sail processes and then tackles the physical aspects of sailing forces and techniques, sail applications, marlinespike, helmsmanship and handling of more difficult sailing conditions, navigation rules, and an introduction to heavy weather sailing. Course completion is documented by a closed book exam graded by USPS Headquarters. 

The last offering of this course was in the spring of 2014, so it’s not a regularly scheduled class. We now have a few new sailing members, as well as others wanting to learn about sailing, and several members on their way to their SN advance grade that will be interested. It most likely will be a while before it’s offered again so if you’re interested you should enroll now.


For more info or questions call Ed Kreul (910-409-7304) or Ned Rhodes (910 523-5015).

Partner In Command: Member cost: $20.00 Location: Inlet Watch Yacht Club - 801 Paoli Ct, Wilmington
Date and Time: Oct 3 & 5 6:30-8:30

Partner in Command Cover

The Partner In Command (PIC) course is intended to provide basic knowledge to the first mate of a boat so they can be better prepared to respond to emergencies that could occur on the water including incapacitation of the captain, injuries to crew members, boat emergencies (fire, flooding, dangerous fumes, etc), and dangerous weather conditions.  An important objective of the course is for the participants to gain sufficient knowledge and on the water experience, such that they can operate their vessel if their captain is disabled and be able to get it safely back to a dock in an emergency.  Although the subject matter is serious, the course is taught in a casual and informal setting with no homework or tests.  We hope to use the Inlet Watch Club House and the Munnikhuysens will provide refreshments both nights. It will be offered on a Tuesday & Thursday night ( October 3rd and 5th, 6:30-8;30 PM) for a total class time of 4 hours.  
Following the completion of the classroom portion of the course, participants will be paired with experienced Instructors for a scheduled on the water training session on the student’s boat.  The objective of the on the water session is to get the “Partner” some behind the wheel experience in their vessel practicing piloting their vessel in practice emergency maneuvers such as man overboard or docking in an emergency.  The PIC student’s spouses/significant other are welcome to attend both the classroom and on the water sessions as observers but they will be asked to sit quietly and not actively participate.  


In addition to the course content focused on emergency response issues, we will also discuss how to be a good 1st mate in normal, everyday boating situations.  These subjects will include lookout duty, navigation aide, line handling, basic knots and hitches, docking, and anchoring.   Mastering these basic 1st mate duties can both help prevent emergencies, relieve stress on the captain and crew and make boating more fun for everyone aboard.  

Tuesday Oct 3 and Thursday Oct 5 from 6:30 - 8:30
@ Inlet Watch Yacht Club


For more information email Ned Rhodes, SN at 

Weather: - cost: $65.00 Location: Cape Fear Community College - Room U528
Date and Time: Oct 25 for 8 weeks, 6:30-8:30



Even the most experienced Captain will tell you that boating is always dependent on the weather.  This course provides a basic understanding of atmospheric stability; forming the foundation of how weather systems build, move and interact with one another. You will learn  how and why weather patterns circulate on earth, effects of the atmosphere, oceans, air and land masses, wind pressure, ocean currents, jet stream, water, humidity, fog, clouds, and precipitation. 

 The  level of information about our earth’s weather is guaranteed to give you a newfound appreciation and understanding of how daily weather can help or hinder your boating experience.   You will get hands on training on how to predict anticipated weather along with insights into automated tools  that every boater or weather enthusiast will  find extremely useful.  This course will benefit the most seasoned mariner as well as those to who never intend to venture out into the water but admire what “Mother Nature” can produce.

Each student will receive:
-       USPS Weather Textbook - an explanatory text with full color photographs and drawings covering weather in the United States and its coastal and inland waters
-       Set of 3 millibar charts – to introduce weather forecasting and weather station symbology
-       NOAA’s Sky Watcher Chart - a reference  identifying all of the  cloud types – which serves as one  tool to help identify approaching weather.


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