Adaptive Sailing

COVID-19 Update:

Regretfully, we were unable to offer our Nantucket Adaptive Sailing Program in the summer of 2020, as we were not able to safely comply with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Executive Orders and Guidelines. We wish you good health in all your endeavors on the Island.

Due to the generosity of the residents of Nantucket, this program is provided free of charge!

Sail To Prevail first started serving individuals with disabilities on Nantucket in 2009. The Nantucket program offers an Independence 20’ sailboat, dedicated to serving the island for a 4-5 week period between July and August. First-timers as well as experienced sailors are welcome! This location specializes in providing a therapeutic community for those children, on-island, with disabilities and we are proud to partner with the Autism Speaks and the STAR programs on Nantucket.

For suggestions on activities and island logistics, please visit the Nantucket Accessibility Guide.


Our sailboat is located at the Nantucket Boat Basin on Swains Wharf, Slip 1410.


Our Friends

If you or your family members are seeking group lessons through a community sailing program, please visit Nantucket Community Sailing, an extraordinary program which we whole-heartedly endorse and recommend. Nantucket Community Sailing works with families of sailors with special needs on an individual basis to place sailors either in group programming or in programming through Nantucket S.T.A.R. (Sports and Therapeutic Accessible Recreation). NCS and STAR team up at NCS’s Jetties Sailing Center throughout the summer to work with students with special needs. Programming is held on Friday afternoons in July and for two weeks in August. NCS also works with the Adam’s Camp for one day in June. Students work with instructors and volunteers to enjoy kayaking, paddleboarding and windsurfing.

For more information, please visit: and contact Tina Steadman.


Cost & Support

There is no charge for our Nantucket Program. This is made possible by the generous support of our donors. Please visit our Support page or call our office to make a donation. Sail To Prevail is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.


Sail To Prevail is grateful for the support from the following organizations:

  • Nantucket Boat Basin
  • Grey Lady Marine
  • Nantucket S.T.A.R.
  • The Beachside
  • Autism Speaks
  • Great Harbor Yacht Club
  • Cape Air
  • Brandt Point Marine
  • Glyn’s Marine
  • I started in the front of the boat with the sails and then got to drive! I was the captain. I bonded with my agency and staff.

  • Thank you to all involved in making the weekend such a wonderful weekend.

    Elinor (wife of John, Army Veteran)
  • I think the feeling of sailing will last a lifetime – everyone should have a chance to try it!

    Peter, age 11
  • Sail To Prevail encouraged me to try new things in life. At first I was scared, but then I volunteered to sail the boat!

  • Wonder weekend!!! Maria and I would like to thank all of you guys at Sail to Prevail for such an absolutely SPLENDID TIME sailing. Please send our kudos to the entire crew!!!

    Raymond (Air Force Veteran)
  • Sailing is the best activity for me to participate in on Nantucket. I never want to miss a sail!

    Dave Brogue, age 40, Autistic
  • At first I never wanted to drive the boat, but after seeing the instructor do it – I decided I could do it also! If I can sail – it made me realize I can do a lot with my life!

    Bethany, (age 13)
  • I like to sing when I sail.

  • I never knew I could go sailing. The lifts are easy and great. Mixture of disability and people has helped me in life. It is the best sensory and learning experiences I’ve ever had. Positive and relaxing. I felt free and limitless.

  • Sail To Prevail is great!

    Curt (Age 53)
  • Patty, Thank you and Sail To Prevail for this weekend. It is amazing how generous you all are - some we saw and some who were behind the scenes. I was thinking about your dock which gives us a window onto a world which we would otherwise never see, and of your willingness to get Bob and all the others out in the boats and onto the water for a good sail. And thank God for the absolutely perfect weather both Saturday and Sunday. Thank you all, also, for the lovely dinner Saturday night. I was sitting at the end of the old people and next to the young people, and it was fun to observe the difference in conversations. It took me back to a very long time ago, and the excitement and promise of shining youth. It was very nice to meet you and talk with you, and also Chad on Sunday. Thank you and thank God for His goodness,

    Lynn and Bob (Air Force Veteran)
  • I had such an amazing time when I went the first time… I enjoyed myself so much… Sail To Prevail has given me back a sense of normalcy, and freedom, that I use to have before MS became an issue

    Jennifer Shortall, first-time participant
  • Sailing helped me feel more comfortable in group and social settings

  • The feeling of sailing lasts forever!

  • was a wonderful experience. I look forward to participating in this program again next year.

    Rhonda O'Donnell, first-time participant
  • Coming to see Sail To Prevail and Tucker is the best part of the summer. Being able to come every week makes it even better. Hope that I get to do this every summer.

    Aidan Steel, age 8, Autistic
  • I never knew I would sail. Each time I went sailing, I improved. The second time, I even volunteered to steer the boat!

  • Sailing made me more confident. It made me happy and proud! I love Sail To Prevail!

  • I found it to be very relaxing and peaceful experience. The weather was perfect, and the instructor was simply awesome as well as fellow participants!

    Katherine Keneally
  • Wearing the life jacket is fun. I like meeting new people like me. I love the team spirit. It is a great experience.

  • My name is Sean “Patrick” Feighan. Until last December I Iived with my Mother, Cynthia Feighan. I have multiple disabilities ranging from Down syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Seizure disorder and Autism. I am currently 27 years old and last December, I moved into a Group Home run by Looking Upwards, Inc. in Middletown, RI. Sensory integration has always been a central part of my daily routine to be successful at living my life to its fullest. Deep massage, stimulating toys, music, videos, etc. help to keep me balanced and therefore receptive to sharing opportunities with others. While I was still in high school, I had the opportunity to begin sailing with Sail To Prevail, through their summer camp. My first time out was indescribable. I experienced a connection with the world around me in a whole new way. My body, often uncooperative with my expectations, was at one with the movement of the boat. I felt the power of the wind moving the boat and myself through the water with an ease that unified my senses. Each time I sail, I experience the same relaxing sensations except when there is no wind and I get anxious to feel the sensations of sailing. I look forward to sailing each summer and the feelings of accomplishment I get after having gone out on the boat. I know that I am doing something not otherwise experience by many people in my shoes. This feeling of accomplishment and sensory balance prevails into all areas of my life. Not being able to sail is like not having fruit to eat. My life is better balanced when I can sail. My mother is grateful beyond understanding to be able to help to provide this opportunity to me. She cannot help me to play baseball, or soccer, or football. She cannot access much of what currently exists for people without disabilities and even with disabilities for me. This is fulfillment of her wishes for me to have a life as full and as enriching as possible. Sailing makes us both very happy.

    Patrick and Cynthia Feighan
  • I would really like to compliment you and the staff for the extraordinary sailing program you did this summer to benefit Veterans. The weather perfect, the setting in Newport the best, the equipment well prepared, and the staff on deck. A day to remember. The staff was particularly good and professional in dealing with the veterans and their particular disabilities. The total experience was enjoyable and refreshing. What could be better? These programs enhance the quality of life for each individual and provide experiences that will never be forgotten. Thanks to you the staff at Sail to Prevail: this work does not go unnoticed and is truly appreciated. Keep up the good work.

    Richard Early President and Service Officer, Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 116
  • It encouraged me to try new things. I liked to prepare for tacks and talk before it happened. I overcome barriers after sailing.

    Dave (autistic)
  • Every time I go, I want to go more

    Rachel (Age 55, significant developmental difficulties)
  • I felt the wind at my face. I like the sensation of sailing

    Dave (blind sailor)
  • I love steering the boat!

  • For the first time in my life, I felt empowerment.

  • I want to convey to the entire staff of Sail To Prevail the absolutely fabulous time I enjoyed on my very first sailing adventure … I felt safe and secure … transferring me from my power chair into the boat. I will fondly remember the sense of freedom and relaxation while sailing… experience the exhilaration and feelings of true calmness while sailing because it will be a memory that will last a lifetime. Thanks … for making an important difference in the lives of individuals with limitations.

    Brenda J. Brown, first-time participant
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