Take The Wheel

October 13-15 at the Annapolis Sailboat Show.

Registration will Open July 1, 2023

If you would like to be notified when registration opens, please email Tara Flanagan 

2023 Take The Wheel Course

Find the Sailboat of Your Dreams
Sponsored by Jeanneau & Sail Away Catamarans

This is an opportunity to demo two sailboats of your choice, compare one against the other, fast track your boating buying knowledge, and narrow the search for your new boat.

Take the Wheel is an on-and-off water learning experience. The morning session covers sailboat design, how to maximize your boating pleasure, and budget. In the afternoon you’ll sail aboard your choice of two out of eight yachts and have a chance to get a stem to stern look with wind in the sails. Find the best boat for your personal sailing needs. Demo various sizes and styles of sailboats. Choose from monohulls and catamarans. Experts will be on board to answer your specific questions.

Regardless of whether you plan to day sail on the Chesapeake Bay, cruise close to home, or to fulfill a dream to sail off into the sunset, Take the Wheel is a worthy launch site.

Register as a couple and save.

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The Take the Wheel Workshop is $395 per person or $550 per couple

Workshop Includes:
• Morning instruction by renowned experts, Behan & Jamie Gifford of Sailing Totem
• Afternoon on-the-water sailing experience
• Opportunity to sea-trial two catamarans or monohulls of your choice
• Continental breakfast and lunch
• Choice of dates: Friday, October 14th, Saturday, October 15th, and Sunday, October 16th
• Multi-day admission ticket to United States Sailboat Show – $115 Value
• Complimentary one year basic BoatU.S. membership – $30 Value

If you need hotel accommodation, The Historic Inns of Annapolis provides a discount room rate to all students.  You can either book your hotel room online (Fall 2023 Cruisers University Hotel Block) or call the hotel directly at 410-263-2641 to reserve your hotel room with the Group Code 10562F.


Jamie & Behan Gifford
Sailing Totem

Jamie Gifford  is a recovering racing sailor. His therapy was a 10-year circumnavigation with his wife and three children on Totem, their Stevens 47. As a sail designer, he was behind sails for winners in the Americas Cup, Vendee Globe Challenge/BOC, Whitbread, and numerous other regattas; in recent years, Jamie’s focused on cruising sails, rigging, and systems for offshore and regional sailors. Experience from professional life and that gained in 100,000+ miles sailing gives him rich perspective on cruising topics.

Behan Gifford sailed south from the Pacific Northwest in 2008 with her husband and three children aboard their Stevens 47, Totem. Sabbatical plans morphed into an open-ended adventure, with 48 countries/territories visited while putting over 65,000 miles under the keel – so far! She is a co-author of Voyaging with Kids, the de facto guide to cruising with children, and passionate about sharing her experiences to inspire others to chase the blue horizon. Learn more about Behan and the cruising coaching service she and husband, Jamie, offer at www.sailingtotem.com.

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Monohulls By Jeanneau

The following monohulls by Jeanneau will be available in the 2023 Take the Wheel program.

Sun Odyssey 410
Sun Odyssey 410

Length 40’6″ | Beam 13’1” | 2/3 Cabins Provided by Jeanneau The Sun Odyssey 410 is the perfect combination of performance, comfort and safety at sea. With two or three cabins, a spacious saloon, functional galley, high quality woodwork accents with an incredibly bright, well-lit interior, she has it all.

Sun Odyssey 440
Sun Odyssey 440

Length 42’8”| Beam 14’1”| 2/4 Cabins Provided by Jeanneau The Sun Odyssey 440 features a generous beam and walk-around deck, ensuring life on deck is comfortable and spacious, either under way or at anchor. Simple sail handling is ensured through the use of an integrated bow sprit, inboard winches, and recessed wells for contro


The following catamarans should be available to chose from for the sea trial portion of the 2023 Take the Wheel program, however, the catamaran line-up can change up to the date of sea trials.

2021 Excess 12
2021 Excess 12

Length 38’9″ provided by Crusader Yachts The Excess 12 brings a newfound sense of adventure to the catamaran world. With twin helming stations, located aft, this makes for an experience on a water that truly connects you to the sea. With a large volume from the dual hulls, she offers layouts with 3 or 4 cabins and up to 4 heads making it spacious enough for up to 12 people. Sail away on the Excess 12 to discover the true uniqueness of Excess desig

2021 Seawind 1260
2021 Seawind 1260

Length 41’ provided by Sail Away Catamarans

2019 Fountaine Pajot 40
2019 Fountaine Pajot 40

Length 40’ provided by Sail Away Catamarans

2019 Lagoon 42
2019 Lagoon 42

Length 41’3″ provided by Sail Away Catamarans

2020 Vision 444
2020 Vision 444

Length 44’5″ provided by Sail Away Catamarans