Go on … push the boat out in Oban

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Landlubbers are being invited to push the boat out and give sailing a go in Oban this weekend.

Oban Sailing Club is offering people the chance to try out dinghy and keelboat sailing and powerboating – all for free on Saturday May 19.

The club in Gallanach Road hopes there will be a big uptake for the offer and it is open to anyone completely new to the sport or looking at getting back out on the water.

The fun, fit for all the family and individuals, starts at 10am on the day and goes on until 4pm.

Iain Campbell, commodore at Oban Sailing Club, said it is ‘the perfect time to give it a go’, get outdoors and be active. People just need to turn up at the clubhouse.

The Oban open day  is part of a nationwide event being organised by the Royal Yachting Association (RYA) which will see thousands of people taking part in sailing or windsurfing activities at sailing clubs.

‘We’re inviting the local community to come down to have a go at sailing and powerboating, see what the Oban Sailing Club has to offer and get involved. Who knows? You might just get hooked!” added Mr Campbell.

As well as lots of taster sessions, there will also be a chance to row in a skiff with Oban Rowing Club. The Seil rowing side will also be there and Argyll College is bringing along its RIB boat.

Oban’s lifeboat, the Mora Edith MacDonald, a Trent-class all-weather vessel, will be putting in an appearance between noon and 2pm for people to take a peek inside – unless, of course, it gets a call-out, added Mr Campbell.

‘Sailing can be as physical or as relaxing as you want to make it. You can sail with others or on your own, do it competitively or potter about and just enjoy the gentle escape of being outside in the elements,’ he said.

Oban Sailing Club was formed in 1935 and it is hoped the taster day will bring in a bigger crew of members.

Nearly 400 venues across the UK, including Oban Sailing Club, have  signed up to be involved with Push The Boat Out in 2018 and get more people out on the water. The initiative was first created in 2011 as part of the RYA Sail for Gold programme.

To find out more about sailing locally, go to obansailingclub.org or follow the club on Facebook and Twitter.