The mission of the IUP Sailing Club is to involve the IUP community in recreational sailing; to allow beginners to master basic skills leading to US Sailing certification; and to provide experienced sailors the opportunity to develop racing tactics and compete in collegiate regattas.

The club was formed in Fall of 2011. With no boats and few experienced sailors, the club officers lead by founding president Justin Thomas embarked on a Puddle Duck Racer building project.  In August 2012, the club acquired six JY15s through the support of the IUP Student Cooperative Association and the leadership of Erin Carlson and Taylor Billman. 

The club began sailing out of the south shore of Yellow Creek State Park, with certified US Sailing instructors Karl Richter ('16) and Julia Campbell ('16) providing lessons to novice IUP sailors.

The Sailing Club was recognized with an Excellence in the Classroom award at the IUP Student Leadership Banquet (March 2014) and club officer, Karl Richter, was given the IUP Chacivity Award (April 2014), recognizing Character, Civility, and Integrity.

The club has also been active in community service, sponsoring Get-Outdoors-PA outreach sessions with the park to introduce the public to sailing. 

In 2012 and 2013, the club hosted Pitt Sailing at Yellow Creek for informal races at Septemberfest. Partnering with the non-profit, Friends of Yellow Creek, and the state park, the club is preparing to reopen the Yellow Creek Sailing Base on the north shore of the park. 

The Middle Atlantic Intercollegiate Sailing Association accepted IUP Sailing as an Associate member, and the club became eligible for formal competition. In May 2014, sailors Richter and Joe Cristello represented IUP for the first time ever in a sanctioned ISCA race at Annapolis, MD.  

Annapolis, MD - May 3, 2014

IUP Sailing Club members Karl Richter and Joe Cristello represented IUP in the Pinkerton Memorial Regatta on Saturday. The pair traveled to Annapolis where they sailed against the University of Maryland, Salisbury University, and University of Maryland Baltimore.

"It was our first and certainly not our last! Here's to a long lasting legacy for IUP Sailing" said Richter. And from Cristello's perspective, "The regatta was an amazing experience with wonderful people at an absolutely beautiful location"

Waking at 6:00AM, the IUP sailors headed to the water to rig and launch the two-person FJ sailboat. They competed in a series of 16 round-the-buoy races, sailing for a total of seven hours. "We had a blast! Next time we'll bring more sailors. Sailing for seven hours is tiring and the other teams had constant rotations."

Racing began at 10am with light air but built to 8 knots by noon and peaked at 13 knots around 4pm; perfect conditions for a race.

According to Cristello, "There's no beginner's luck in sailing. But we learned so much competing against other sailors and we were able to gradually improve and hone our abilities through the day." 

"We were a very competitive team for out first time. We only missed 3rd by a few sets," said Richter.

Another challenge for the new racers--this was the first time Cristello and Richter had sailed FJs. "We learned a lot about FJ sailboats. And we met a neat group of people, students and coaches from the other schools" said Richter. Visiting teams bring their PFDs and personal gear, while the host team provides sailboats for all competitors in intercollegiate regattas. One team-mate takes the tiller, while the crew member tends the jib sheets.

Karl Richter, a Sophomore and Safety Science major is from Bangor, PA. He sailed for many years and works at the waterfront of a summer camp when not studying at IUP. Karl was elected Fleet Captain for 2014-15. Richter notes he's proud "knowing we were the start of something new for IUP and for the sailing club!"

Joe Cristello, is a Freshman Natural Science/Pre-Pharmacy major from Natrona Heights, PA. He learned to sail with the IUP club beginning this past fall. Joe was elected club president for 2014-15.

The club regularly sails at Yellow Creek State Park, 12 miles west of IUP in Penn Run, PA. The new IUP Sailing Club was founded in 2012, and purchased six JY15 sailboats with the support of the Student Cooperative Association in 2013. Currently, they are collaborating with the park and Friends of Yellow Creek to reopen the historic sailing base.

The club welcomes beginners and experienced sailors. All members of the IUP community may join, including staff, faculty, and alumni. Classroom workshops are provided fall and spring, and free sailing lessons at the lake are provided during the good weather while school is in session. Instructors Richter, Julia Campbell (club educator, Sophomore, Child Studies) and club advisor Kenneth Sherwood (Prof. English) are US Sailing instructors, giving members the opportunity to become certified small-boat sailors. For more information, visit the website at: or email
Indiana, Pa.  -- Adventure lovers and outdoor enthusiasts find extreme challenges in the fields, hills, forests, and waterways of Pennsylvania.  Residents are invited to enjoy the sights and challenges of the outdoors through the lenses of independent film makers at the first Appalachian Film Festival.  The festival will be held at the Indiana Theater at 7PM on December 5th and 6th.  Admission is  $6 at the door ($5 in advance through the theater or Indiana bike shops). All proceeds benefit the non-profit Friends of Yellow Creek State Park. 

The festival presents the work of independent film makers from across the country through short films and excerpts.  Viewers will experience the drama of adventure racing, free BASE jumping, ice climbing, rock climbing, white water rafting.  As a special treat, viewers will get a preview of  a film featuring local racers Julia Pollock and Toby Angrove. Both athletes will be present to talk about the films and answer questions.  The full-length "Expedition Adventure" will premiere on NBC Universal Sports in December. This film was produced by Indiana-resident Douglas Crytzer.  In addition to co-sponsoring the Appalachian Film Festival, Mr. Crytzer is Founder and President of Gnarly Crew Media; his company, American Adventure Sports produces the North American Adventure Racing Series. Friends of Yellow Creek State Park, and the IUP Sailing Club are the presenting sponsors.  

Yellow Creek State Park is regularly the site of Xterra off-road triathalons.
iupsail2013.jpgThanks to all those who helped put our boats away.  Last meeting of the semester is after Thanksgiving, 8pm 12/5 in Leonard 110.  We'll start up early in January with some sailing instruction and other fun activities.  Keep in touch through our facebook group "IUP Sailing Club" or send an email to to be added to the email list. 
Karl Richter, IUP Sailing Club - Equipment
10:00 AM  Meet at the Boat Rental (Main Day-Use Area)

Join us to explore the sport and art of sailing on Yellow Creek Lake. This two-hour session begins with a lesson on the parts of the sailboat and introduces future sailors to the basics of wind awareness, sail trim, and points of sail. Three US Sailing Certified instructors will be on hand. After this orientation, in the second hour each student will have the chance to enjoy a short sail accompanied by an experienced sailor (weather permitting). We will wear PFDs, but to participate, sailors must be capable of swimming 50 yards in clothing and shoes. Participation is free but is limited to 12 students over the age of 10 years. Pre-registration required. To register call the Park Office at (724) 357-7913.

US Sailing Course Offered at Yellow Creek
June 8-9, 2013

Like sailing? Want to work or volunteer on a waterfront?  This course is designed to prepare camp counselors and staff from community sailing and scouting programs to supervise small boat recreational sailing activities. The emphasis is on safety and hands-on practice to familiarize candidates with proper terminology and boating techniques. Participants should have some prior exposure to sailing but need not be experts.  

This course will be taught by a certified US Sailing instructor trainer from Pittsburgh. It is co-sponsored by Friends of Yellow Creek and the IUP Sailing Club. There is a US Sailing fee associated with this course.

Contact for more information.

Video by Adam Hanasick

Starring Julia, Karl and others

Congratulations to Adam and crew for creating this fun video. Makes you want to go sailing, doesn't it? IUP's web team thought so.