Hudson River Community Sailing develops leadership and academic success in underserved New York City youth through sailing education and provides maritime education and recreation to the community at large.
Founded in 2008 by Bill Bahen, HRCS partners with public schools to offer credit-bearing afterschool programming, internships, mentoring, and college readiness. Our youth development platform uses sailing, boat operation, and boat building to further academic skills and instill the qualities of character necessary for college and career success. HRCS also serves the broader community through affordable marine education and recreation for individuals, groups, schools, businesses, and families.
Accolades and Organizational Relationships
In its first decade, HRCS has provided waterfront access to over 20,000 youth, adults, and families. We expanded to Inwood in 2016, launched a second youth development program there in 2018, and piloted an adaptive sailing program in 2021 to serve youth and adults with disabilities. We are a US Sailing Certified Community Sailing Center, and have been awarded "Outstanding Community Sailing Center" in 2016 and "10 Years of Hallmark Performance," in 2019.
We have lasting partnerships with a number of maritime and educational organizations in the city. HRCS is a member of the Student Success Network, the Youth Development Institute’s Career Internships Institute, and CUNY ‘s CARA College Inquiry CBO Consortium. In Inwood, we operate in partnership with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, and we are a permittee of the Hudson River Park Trust in Chelsea. We have a close relationship with our elected officials in both District 10 and District 3, as well as with the Manhattan Borough Presidents’ office.
Fleet and Facility
We have 12 J/24 sailboats, the most popular keelboats in the world, from various years, and 13 new J/80s, purchased from 2018-2020. The boats are fast and sporty, while being stable and safe, and are typically crewed by 4 or 5 sailors. HRCS operates from Pier 66 in Chelsea, and Dyckman Marina in Inwood.
Sail Academy Graduate
“Although I have learned so much about sailing, this program also greatly improved my social skills. I have become much more open, I have become a better leader, and most importantly I learned how to teach others the skills I have acquired. I did not immediately notice the changes occurring until people around me commented on how much of a positive impact sailing and being part of this program had on me.”
“US Sailing prides itself on providing leadership, integrity and advancement for our sailors; all of which are shared objectives of Hudson River Community Sailing. HRCS has been a US Sailing Certified school since 2009, and provides high-quality sailing and marine education to the New York City community.”
“We're so delighted with everything she's learned in just 2 days. She's never been on a boat other than the Staten Island Ferry before so this is definitely out of her comfort zone. When I asked her what she likes about it she said "I just like sailing." Who knew?”
“Our son, Nick, has been in this program for 4 years and has learned all aspects of sailing. He has studied math and physics as it relates to sailing, and this has helped him in school. The kids build a boat in the winter, and then sail it in the spring. This is such an amazing program for inner city kids.”