PS Tech Editor Launches Cruising Seminars

Posted by Darrell Nicholson at 10:19AM - Comments: (2)

Ralph Naranjo

Practical Sailor Technical Editor Ralph Naranjo will be busy in October and November with seminars designed to set cruising sailors on the right course. If you’re planning to go to the United States Sailboat Boat Show in Annapolis, Md., this weekend, be sure to catch Ralph at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13, in the Arnold Room at the Marriott Waterfront Hotel. He will be presenting a free “Gateway to Cruising” mini-seminar that focuses on launching into the cruising lifestyle.

Ralph is among several experts featured in a three-day seminar series that begins Friday and is sponsored by Chesapeake Bay Magazine and the Annapolis School of Seamanship. Topics range from “Marine Weather for Sailors,” presented by renowned marine meteorologist Lee Chesneau, to “Marine Diesel Basics” by the Annapolis School of Seamanship’s John Martino.

Ralph’s one-hour talk during the U.S. Sailboat Show will be a mini-version of the two-day seminar he’ll be giving through the Annapolis School of Seamanship on Nov. 16 and 17.

Circumnavigator, boatyard manager and author, Ralph offers a unique perspective on the realities of the cruising adventure. During his 10-year stint as the Vanderstar chair at the U.S. Naval Academy, he helped develop safety and seamanship training and played a key role in the development of the Navy's new sail-training sloops.

His sailing background includes a five-year family voyage around the world, the management and development of a full-service boatyard, and regular contributions to boating magazines, journals, and books. He and his wife, Lenore, have made two other long cruises aboard Wind Shadow, a 41-foot Ericson sloop that the Naranjos have owned for over three decades. During the last 15 years, Ralph has moderated U.S. Sailing’s Safety at Sea seminars across the country. Now, as an adjunct lecturer at the Annapolis School of Seamanship, he and Martino, the school's owner, are developing a new line of courses tailored to specific cruising interests. At Practical Sailor, Ralph specializes in testing and evaluating safety gear, deck hardware, systems, and marine finishes. He has also written a series of special reports that shed light on complex aspects of boat design and construction.

During the two-day event in November, Ralph will outline a pathway that links the right boat, the ready crew, and a well-researched cruising itinerary. The first day focuses on the bigger picture of planning and boat selection, while the second day focuses on more specific practical aspects of living aboard and cruising with confidence.

The seminar affords an in-depth look at what’s involved in a successful voyage. It focuses on safety through seamanship and explores how to refine a good cruising plan that suits individual aspirations and schedules. The small-group, interactive classroom setting will give attendees a chance to have Ralph address their specific questions. The tuition is $379. You can register online at the Annapolis School of Seamanship,, or call 410/263-8848 for further details.

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