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About LWSA

The Lake Winnipesaukee Sailing Association, Inc. was founded in 1988 to promote sailing on Lake Winnipesaukee. The primary purpose of the association is to operate a youth sailing school in Gilford, NH. We also promote organized sailboat cruising and racing on the lake, including a one-design J/80 racing fleet. Annual dues, donations, and proceeds from organized racing are used to finance and support the youth sailing program.

Your membership, donation and volunteer efforts support the organization - read how you can get involved!

If you don't know how to sail or want to brush up on your skills:

We offer beginner and advanced youth lessons grouped by age at our Sailing School on a range of boats small and large, and we also offer adult group lessons on our 23-foot Sonar keelboats.

If you'd like a more tailored approach just for you or your family:

We also offer private or group lessons in our Sonars, or in your own boat if you prefer, with content tailored to your specific needs.

If you're interested in crewing:

With a full schedule of mixed-fleet and J/80 one-design racing, there are usually crewing opportunities available. Please contact our PHRF Coordinator, or our J/80 Fleet Captain to find out more.

If you're interested in racing your own boat:

Check out our mixed-fleet and J/80 one-design schedules - we hope to see you on the water!


Lake Winnipesaukee Sailing Association was founded in 1988 as the Lake Winnipesaukee Yacht Racing Association and from the very start its main focus was on youth sailing education. For many years, the Sailing School was generously hosted at Fay's Boatyard by Merrill Fay. In 2013, LWSA realized a long-term vision of expanding capacity and reaching more young sailors when it moved into its own facility on Smith Cove in Gilford next door to Fay's Boatyard. Generous donations from large benefactors and small donations from many, many donors enabled us to turn an old lakeside cottage with dock and beach into the Dave Adams Memorial Sailing Center named after a local sailor who started out sailing at LWSA, but sadly, passed away as a young adult. 


Our mission is to promote and expand participation in the sport of sailing,

particularly on Lake Winnipesaukee and, in doing so, to remove barriers of

knowledge, financial means, disability and age. LWSA is a non-profit charity for

the benefit of the people and communities of the Lakes Region now and for

generations to come. In carrying out our mission, we pledge to foster safety,

self-confidence, teamwork, honesty, positive sporting values, and an appreciation

for our environment


By 2025, we will double our capacity by expanding existing programs and

launching new programs such as an adaptive sailing program for sailors with

disabilities, afterschool sailing, and boat sharing. We will have an established

competitive sailing program that represents our local community in regattas off

the lake. Our educational and racing programs overwhelmingly produce sailors

of good character who go on to enjoy sailing as a lifelong pursuit and/or act as

good ambassadors for sailing in the Lakes Region and beyond. We will have

sufficient means to ensure that affordability is not a barrier for participants in our

sailing programs. We will be a sustainable organization for the long-term, with no

mortgage and a membership of around 500 recurring members. LWSA in 2025

will be recognized as the home of sailing activities for the people of the Lakes

Region and a valued contributor to youth development and strong local


Contact Details

Mailing Address:

Lake Winnipesaukee Sailing Association, Inc.
PO Box 7047
Gilford NH 03247

David Adams Memorial Sailing Center address:

25 Davis Road
Gilford NH 03249

Phone (voicemail): 603-589-1177

Email us at LWSA

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