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Great Story: Adaptive Sailing

Smiling Woman Aboard Boat

by Kali “Orca” Cika

After years away from the water, Cynthia, a former Stonington resident, was overjoyed to take the helm of Sweet Caroline, one of our adaptive sailing boats. This 23-foot keelboat is uniquely outfitted for sailors like Cynthia, who has decreased mobility due to stroke. She gracefully used the bars and connective benches in the cockpit to transition from side to side while maneuvering Sweet Caroline through Stonington Harbor. Cynthia reminisced of her time living in Stonington Borough while seeing landmarks like DuBois Beach and her previous home. Though she had been away from the helm for some time, she was pleased to see how the skills “came back like riding a bike” and how the adaptive sailing equipment made her transitions smooth. After safely docking Sweet Caroline back at NESS, Cynthia announced the experience was “as fun as an ice cream social.”

It was an honor to bring Cynthia back on the water in a place she calls home!