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Set Your Course For The Sailing Museum

This new sailing museum in Newport, Rhode Island, allows seasoned sailors to revel in their sport while enticing new sailors into the family.

Young boy using an interactive sailing exhibit at the Sailing Museum

The ribbon was finally cut this spring on the years-in-the-making museum dedicated to sailing in the sailing hub of Newport, Rhode Island, making for a great new destination for sailing enthusiasts.

"Opening the museum fulfills a longstanding vision of the organization's founders," said Heather Ruhsam, executive director. "The Sailing Museum is not only intended to preserve the history of the sport, but to educate and inspire future sailors and innovators."

The Sailing Museum offers six thematic areas that begin with the selection of a boat. For sailors, they can select from one of seven on a screen; while those experiencing sailing for the first time will be given the option of a short quiz that will help them select a boat. For all, this boat will become their avatar throughout their museum experience, guiding them through the interactive elements, several of which will be specific to their selected boat.

The exhibit hall of the museum is divided into six thematic areas:

1. Wind & Water: Simple elements, nature in her purest form, and the inspiration for innovation across the ages as humans have harnessed them to explore, trade, recreate and compete.

2. The Making of a Sailor: Mental: Explore the mental side of the sport including navigation, tactics, leadership, and decision-making.

3. The Making of a Sailor: Physical: Sailors of all abilities possess physical prowess, speed, agility, strength, and endurance. Learn about these accomplishments, watch the pros fly above the water, and take the grinding challenge!

4. Teamwork: Sailing brings people with assorted skills together, working toward a common goal. Whether cruising or racing, teamwork is essential to making a boat sail swiftly. Learn about the collegiate sailors making their mark and team up with your friends to race to the finish.

5. Competition: See what happens at the top of the sport when sailors perform at the highest level. Explore iconic events from across the sport, dive into the history of the America's Cup, and discover resources to begin your own sailing journey.

6. Legends of Sailing: National Sailing Hall of Fame & America's Cup Hall of Fame: The Legends of Sailing area of the museum celebrates the National Sailing Hall of Fame and America's Cup Hall of Fame, featuring more than 175 sailing legends, connecting the past to the future. From designers and builders to coaches and mentors, artists, historians, Olympians, sailmakers, and explorers, The Sailing Museum offers visitors a window into the most exciting personalities in sailing.

Take a look at the opening last May, which includes a tour of the museum:

The Sailing Museum is Now Open!

The museum's location at the seaport city's historic Armory Building — the site of the Press Headquarters for the America's Cup from 1958 to 1983 — is incorporated into the exhibits. Tickets are $18, with discounts for seniors, students, and military. Children 10 and under admitted free of charge.

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Rich Armstrong

Senior Editor, BoatUS Magazine

A journalist by training, BoatUS Magazine Senior Editor Rich Armstrong has worked in TV news, and at several newspapers, then spent 18 years as a top editor at other boating publications. He’s built a stellar reputation in the marine industry as one of the most thorough reporters in our business. At BoatUS Magazine, Rich handles everything from boat and product innovation and late-breaking news, to compelling feature stories, boat reviews, and features on people and places. The New Jersey shore and lakes of lower New York defined Rich's childhood. But when he bought a 21-foot Four Winns deck boat and introduced his young family to the Connecticut River, his love for the world of boats flourished from there.