West Marine hands out BlueFuture grants

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West Marine named the 25 non-profit organizations that will receive $1,500 spring BlueFuture grants.

The company will present checks this summer to the winners, all community-based organizations that West Marine said are dedicated to getting young people on and around the water in recreational and educational capacities.

The company said it received a record number of applications in its spring 2017 grant cycle. The grants are unrestricted, which means West Marine allows grant recipients to determine how and when they use these funds.

“No one understands the needs of a community better than those living and working in that community,” West Marine senior vice president of marketing Deb Radcliff said in a statement.

“We think these special organizations are doing incredible work to improve access to the water, teach valuable job and life skills and encourage young people from all backgrounds to create and treasure their very own waterlife experiences.”

The spring grant recipients are:

Able for Youth Inc. doing business as Able To Sail, Longmont, Colo.; American Seafarers, Waterford, Conn.; Brother Rice/Marian Competitive Sailing, Rochester Hills, Mich.; Buzzards Bay Coalition, New Bedford, Mass.; Calvert Marine Museum, Solomons, Md.; Community Rowing, Boston; City of Mackinac Island Rec Dept., Mackinac Island, Mich.; Hudson River Maritime Museum, Kingston, N.Y.;

King Harbor Youth Foundation, Redondo Beach, Calif.; Friends of MAOS (Monterey Academy of Oceanographic Science), Monterey, Calif.; New Horizons Maritime Center, Springville, Utah; Newport Sea Base, Newport Beach, Calif.; Ocean Research & Conservation Association, Fort Pierce, Fla.; Puppy Prodigies, Escondido, Calif.;

San Juan Islands Sailing Foundation, Friday Harbor, Wash.; Sail Nauticus, Norfolk, Va.; Sea Scout Ship 5496, St. Charles, Mo.; Space Coast Sailing Education Foundation Inc., Indian Harbour Beach, Fla.; Student Angler League Tournament Trail, Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Surfrider Spirit Sessions, Kailua, Hawaii; The 5Gyres Institute, Los Angeles;

The Cleveland Home, doing business as Life Adventure Center, Versailles, Ky.; Warrior’s Ranch Inc., Wakefield, Kan.; Wildcoast, San Diego; and YMCA Camp Winona, DeLeon Springs, Fla.

“We congratulate these 25 non-profit organizations, which are having such an important impact on young people’s lives,” Radcliff said. “We’re also deeply grateful to all the organizations who applied for spring 2017 BlueFuture grants. With a record number of applications, our judges’ task was extremely challenging. We extend our best wishes to all applicants for continued success and hope they will reapply in the fall.”

West Marine’s BlueFuture Fund distributes tens of thousands of dollars annually through spring and fall BlueFuture grants. To grow the fund, West Marine conducts three signature in-store fundraisers: National Safe Boating Week in May; World Oceans Day in June; and the Month of Giving in December.

The fund also encourages year-round donations through its website at www.westmarine.com/BlueFuture.

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