Community Extra: Keeping Sea Scouts afloat

EDMONDS — In the Sea Scouts at the Port of Edmonds, children learn to sail from volunteer skipper Jeremy Makin.

The port sponsors a “ship” or branch of the scouts led by Makin, 36, of Edmonds, as part of the Boy Scouts of America organization.

Makin himself was a Sea Scout as a teen and has stayed with the program ever since, he said. He’s still grateful for the mentorship and friendship he gained as a youth.

“I benefited from that,” he said. “My continued involvement is to ensure that the same opportunities are available for all young people.”

The Edmonds ship has about 10 participants at a time ranging in age 14 and 21 years old. The young men and women spend time on a sailboat, and also time in the classroom. They learn about boating safety and maintenance, and good sportsmanship. They’re also promised fun and friendship.

Some kids come with boating experience. Others don’t. They learn together.

“Sometimes we’re just going out and sailing in circles,” Makin said. “Sometimes we sail to Kingston and get some ice cream, or just do anchoring practice.”“

Edmonds is the perfect place for the Sea Scouts, Makin said.

“We got some great cruising areas up here, and a great maritime community,” he said.

The Edmonds Sea Scouts program has about six regular adult volunteers who also work on community service projects. They receive support from the Port of Edmonds, which recently honored Makin for 16 years of volunteer service.

Scout volunteers also help with various port activities and events, said Jim Orvis, the port’s commission president. For example, the volunteers work security during community festivals.

Once, they even rebuilt all the dock carts, the small vehicles used by marina tenants to move equipment.

“(Makin) has done a remarkable job with hundreds of young people over the years,” Orvis said.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com.

Edmonds Sea Scouts

For more information about the Edmonds Sea Scouts, call 206-579-3955, go to www.seascout.org, or to their page on Facebook called “Edmonds Sea Scouts.” Other port volunteers also include local students from the Edmonds School District who sometimes play free live music on the beach, Orvis said. Local restaurants often feed the volunteers to thank them.

For more information about the port, call 425-774-0549 or go to www.portofedmonds.org/.

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