US Sailing’s Reach Initiative to Bring STEM Activities for Youth at Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover

Photo credit to Ainhoa Sanchez / Volvo Ocean Race.


BRISTOL, R.I. (May 8, 2018) – The Volvo Ocean Race is in Newport, R.I. for the lone North American Stopover of the 2017-2018 round-the-globe sailing race and US Sailing is thrilled to have a unique opportunity to participate in this exhilarating event and the festivities and educational activities involved on site.

The Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover, scheduled for May 8-20, will be a 13-day public celebration and festival co-hosted by Sail Newport, Rhode Island’s Public Sailing Center, the State of Rhode Island, the R.I. Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM), Commerce RI and Discover Newport.

One of the many featured attractions to the Stopover is the One Ocean Exploration Zone, presented by 11th Hour Racing. This educational activity center offers hands-on opportunities to discover ocean science and the environment. The One Ocean Exploration Zone includes 30 interactive exhibits by 28 non-profit and educational institutions. The goal is to enhance ocean literacy, broaden awareness of stressors facing the marine environment, and educate and inspire visitors on conservation and sustainability efforts underway from the local to global scale.

The US Sailing Reach Initiative, a national STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) educational program to inspire sailing programs and schools to utilize sailing as a teaching platform, is one of the exhibitions at the One Ocean Exploration Zone.

“US Sailing is looking forward to participating in One Ocean Exploration Zone activities during the upcoming Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover,” said Jack Gierhart, CEO of US Sailing. “The Reach program offers fun educational activities for youth to learn how to sail and experience the science, technology and environmental stewardship sailing offers. The Stopover is the perfect opportunity to showcase elements of the program. We want to thank Sail Newport and 11th Hour Racing for organizing the One Ocean Exploration Zone and for inviting US Sailing to participate.”

US Sailing is organizing the Reach Simple Machine Scavenger Hunt. This activity will feature a hands-on display of simple machines on sailboats while participants learn about mechanical advantage and discover examples of the six types of simple machines. Participants will also experience the Sustainability Navigation Challenge using an authentic compass to navigate their way throughout the One Ocean Exploration Zone following interactive clues to various sustainable stations.

Once Ocean Exploration Zone Hours

  • GRAND OPENING: Saturday, May 12, 11 am (closes at 7 pm)
  • Sunday, May 13: 10 am – 7 pm
  • Monday, May 14: 11 am – 7 pm
  • Tuesday, May 15: 11 am – 7 pm
  • Wednesday, May 16: 11 am – 7 pm
  • Thursday, May 17: 10 am – 7 pm
  • Friday, May 18: 10 am – 7 pm
  • Saturday, May 19: 10 am – 7 pm
  • Sunday, May 20: 10 am – 6 pm

As part of the US Sailing Reach STEMcation program and through the support of both US Sailing donors and Endeavour Community Sailing, two US Sailing Reach Initiative students from the Kauai Sailing Association (Hawaii) and two students from Endeavour Community Sailing (Bermuda) have been selected to participate at the Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover for a four-day STEM/sailing experience of a lifetime. They will join two students from the Community Boating Center of New Bedford (Mass.) who will also be participating in the activities. They will visit Zim Sailing (Bristol, R.I.), International Yacht Restoration School – IYRS (Newport, R.I.), Roger Williams University’s Mount Hope Bay Sailing and Education Center (Bristol, R.I.), Community Boating Center in Providence (R.I.) and New England Science & Sailing (Stonington, Conn.).

The Volvo Ocean Race Newport Race Village officially opens on Tuesday, May 8. Entry to the Race Village will be free of charge. Important dates of the Stopover include:

  • May 8, 4 pm: Opening of Volvo Ocean Race Newport Race Village at Fort Adams State Park and boat arrivals
  • May 12, 11 am: Opening of the One Ocean Exploration Zone, presented by 11th Hour Racing
  • May 18, TBA: Volvo Ocean Race Newport Pro-Am Racing
  • May 19, 2 pm: Gurney’s Resorts In-Port Race
  • May 20, 2 pm: Start of trans-Atlantic leg of Volvo Ocean Race to Cardiff, Wales

Full Online Event Schedule

The Volvo Ocean Race began in Alicante, Spain on October of 2017 and, when complete, the 2017-2018 edition will have taken the seven teams 45,000 nautical miles around the world, across four oceans, touching six continents and 12 host cities. The fleet is currently on Leg 8 of the race from Itajai, Brazil to Newport, R.I.

The Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover attracted over 130,000 fans and became one of New England’s biggest sporting events of the year at the 2015 event.

Learn more about the Volvo Ocean Race Newport Stopover and the One Ocean Exploration Zone.

Find out more information about US Sailing’s Reach Initiative.

US Sailing Media Contact: Jake Fish, Communications Manager,

US Sailing Reach Contact: Jessica Servis, Education and Outreach Manager,

About US Sailing
The United States Sailing Association (US Sailing), the National Governing Body for sailing, provides leadership, integrity, and advancement for the sport in the United States. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Bristol, Rhode Island, US Sailing is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. US Sailing offers training and education programs for instructors and race officials, supports a wide range of sailing organizations and communities, issues offshore rating certificates, and provides administration and oversight of competitive sailing across the country, including National Championships and the US Sailing Team. For more information, please visit