SALTY’s Mission, Vision & Inspiration

Seamanship And Leadership Training for Youths

SALTY’s Mission Statement

SALTY is a non-profit organization providing seamanship and leadership training to young men and women aboard sailing vessels as they explore the sea and discover themselves.

SALTY’s Vision Statement

Our vision is to build “Sea Bases” allowing us to successfully introduce young men and women to the beautiful coastal waters of New England and well beyond, providing them the opportunity to sail on traditional ships and discover sea and our rich and exciting maritime heritage.

The Compelling Need for SALTY

Upon research conducted with youth group organizations throughout New England, it became abundantly clear to the founders of SALTY that youth organizations, due to high costs, are not able to successfully introduce their youths to the beautiful coastal waters of New England and provide them the opportunity to discover the sea and our rich and exciting maritime heritage.

SALTY developing a solution and is establishing a “SALTY Sea Base” similar to the Boy Scouts of America’s “Sea Base Florida” which has proven to be a successful business model for more than thirty years. SALTY’s Sea Base will provide young men and women an opportunity to sail aboard traditional sailing vessels as they learn seamanship and leadership skills, explore the sea and discover themselves.

The core of the Sea Base is to offer week-long sailing adventures in Narragansett Bay, and her surrounding islands of Cuttyhunk, Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket and Block Island. This includes destinations to historical landmarks such as Fort Adams in Newport, the University of Rhode Island & Dr. Robert Ballard’s amazing Inner Space Center – Exploring the Unknown Oceans as well as discovering quite coves and beautiful sandy beaches. Customized educational programs will be offered to the many organizations SALTY will serve which include, the Boy Scouts of America, Sea Scouts, Girl Scouts of America, YMCA’s, Boys and Girls Clubs of America and other youth organizations.

SALTY co-chairs with the U.S. National Guard, Sailing Adventures for a very special youth group called “Gold Star Teens”, the surviving sons and daughters of our fallen United States military men and women who lost their lives in the line of duty. SALTY developed a special Healing / Sailing Adventures which includes a wide variety of educational and nurturing programs and is entering its third year, expanding this program to include the sons and daughters of our U.S. Allies.

Upon the success of implementing a strategic and tactical fund raising program, SALTY will continue building its fleet of sailing ships and establish a “SALTY Sea Base” in Rhode Island on Narragansett Bay. SALTY’s long term goal is to build and develop five additional Sea Bases with one in Massachusetts, Maine, Connecticut, New York and the U.S. Virgin Islands providing even greater access to youth groups throughout the United States.

SALTY’s Inspiration – Her First Two Traditional Wooden Sailing Ships

A licensed Coast Guard Captain and retired RI business CEO, Capt. David Pickering, envisioned the SALTY program while serving as skipper and committee chairman of Sea Scouts Ship 1909 (a Boy Scouts of America Venturing Group) in Greenwich Bay, Rhode Island. Pickering was able to have three modest sailboats donated to the sea scouts and with the generous support of East Greenwich Yacht Club which provides moorings, launch, storage and meeting space, was the Sea Scout Ship able to grow and prosper to today becoming the largest Sea Scout Ship in New England.

During this development, it became abundantly clear to all, the costs of providing sailboats and access to the bay and surrounding waters was an expensive and challenging proposition. With the success of having modest sailboats donated, along with a year of market research and business development, SALTY was founded in 2014 and began acquiring ships.

STARBOUND recently made the 225-mile voyage from northern Maine to Greenwich Bay to begin its new mission as a platform for youth education and adventure.

STARBOUND, a beautiful 72-foot traditional wooden sailing ketch, was SALTY’s first ship originally built in 1950 and was based on Joshua Slocum’s 36-foot SPRAY, made famous by completing the world’s first solo circumnavigation in 1898. Joshua’s son, Victor Slocum participated in the development of STARBOUND’s lines and plans. STARBOUND has an adventure-filled history, having twice sailed around the world, and was once owned by the famed singer and actor Burl Ives. In the late 1990s, STARBOUND’s prior owners funded a $650,000 restoration to her wooden hull, deck and marine systems. She is in “Bristol Condition”, with the exception of her original masts and bowsprit, which are in the process of being replaced.

In February of 2015, Starbound gained a “little sister” with the acquisition of GOLDEN GOOSE, a beautiful traditional wooden 55-foot George Stadel schooner, built in 1975 and generously donated by a RI family.

STARBOUND and GOLDEN GOOSE will be a common sight around the waters of Narragansett Bay, Block Island, Martha’s Vineyard, Cuttyhunk and Nantucket. As part of SALTY’s fund raising efforts, ships are available for private and corporate functions when not serving youth groups. Her homeport is Greenwich Bay, RI.