How can you make a difference in the DC Sail community?

Become one of our valued Member Volunteers.

Members of DC Sail are an essential aspect of our vibrant and active organization. We welcome your energy and enthusiasm to assist with managing our nonprofit community sailing center through the gift of time and experience. There are several areas where our programming needs would benefit from your assistance.

Please Note: DC Sail Volunteers participating in on-the-water programs are required to be paid Basic, Super, Instructor, Admiral, or Lifetime Level Members.

Volunteer Instructors

Instructors for DC Sail's Adult Lessons (Adult Beginner Learn to Sail, Intro to FJs, and Refresher Courses.)

Registration for the 2024 Training Weekend will open in March.

2024 Volunteer Instructor Training Weekend:

We will host a training weekend on Saturday, April 13th and Sunday, April 14th, 2024. 

The Instructor Training is mandatory attendance for new Volunteer Instructors. Training will take place 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Meeting place is Dock 79 Building, Community Room, 79 Potomac Avenue SE, Washington, DC. Please arrive about 15 minutes early to check in and get settled. (Returning Instructors are welcome to attend on Saturday as a refresher of curriculum, if needed. Not mandatory for returning Instructors.)

Breakfast and lunch will be provided on Saturday, with everyone bringing their own food/beverage for Sunday. Please also dress for the weather and bring your lifejacket as we do plan to sail after lunch, weather permitting. 

Sunday's session will recap the curriculum from Saturday, answer any questions you may have and then move to the docks for afternoon sailing.

When registration opens in March, to register, please scroll down to the red box where you'll see a link to click on for processing your registration. Online registration is required so that we may plan accordingly for supplies needed for the weekend.

Please review the following information for how we manage our Volunteer Instructor Team to evaluate if this is a good fit for your sailing knowledge and interest level.

Thank you!

Our Instructors are dedicated and skilled volunteers who undergo training to bring the best quality sailing instruction to our adult students. Many of our Instructors are US Sailing Certified Instructors and have sailed in all corners of the globe.

DC Sail's adult lessons are taught by highly trained, local volunteer instructors.  DC Sail is always looking for volunteers to serve in this capacity! We host a mandatory training session at the beginning of each season, and we may consider opportunities for new Instructors to join our team of volunteers throughout the season.  

Required qualifications for Volunteer Instructors:

  • Age 21+
  • Agree to pick up a MINIMUM of two classes each month between April and mid-October. (Adult Beginner Learn to Sail and Refresher Course Lessons take place on Saturdays and Sundays, 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM. Intro to FJs Course is one weekend a month in June, July and August from 11:30 AM to 3:30 PM.) 
  • Relevant sailing experience with strong sailing skills.
  • Successful completion of the NASBLA approved District of Columbia Boating Safety Certification.
  • Ability to swim 75 yards while fully clothed.
  • Exhibit calm, friendly and appropriate interpersonal skills.
  • Participate in DC Sail training sessions and agree to follow our curriculum while teaching students.
  • Sign up for a Shiftboard account through with DC Sail.
  • Become a DC Sail member at the Instructor rate which has the same membership benefits as a Super Member. (This is by invitation only!)
  • A great attitude, enjoyment in the sharing of sailing knowledge, and a desire to have fun!
Recommended Qualifications:
  • US Sailing Small Boat Sailing Certification.
  • US Sailing Level One Certification - not required but helpful.
  • Current CPR and First Aid Certifications.
If you're interested in becoming a Volunteer Instructor, please send an email to: Traci Mead (

Volunteer Crew Aboard "American Spirit"

There are no current Volunteer Crew positions available at present.

Volunteer Instructor Training

No upcoming events

"American Spirit" Volunteer Crew Training

No upcoming events


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DC Sail is the community sailing program of National Maritime Heritage Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Business Mailing Address: 650 Wharf Street SW, Unit 20, Washington, DC 20024
Diamond Teague Park Piers Waterfront Address: 99 Potomac Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20003
The Wharf Marina Waterfront Address: 650 Wharf Street SW, Washington, DC 20024
Telephone: (202) 547-1250 · Email: Traci Mead, Executive Director - 
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