Upcoming Education Classes

Knowledge + Skills = Confidence


Online Boating Safety Course (ABC)

Materials Fee: $34.95 (in most states)
Dates: Online Self-paced
Location: Online

This boating safety course is designed for boaters using all types of watercraft.

No matter how much experience you have with boating, it is important to have the knowledge needed to keep your passengers, yourself and your boat safe.

Learn the skills you need to be safe while boating. Take the finest National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) recognized online boating safety course available. By enrolling in the America's Boating Course you will learn navigation rules, water sports safety and other valuable boater safety skills.

Note, this course does NOT earn you an advanced grade.

State of MN does not recognize the online course to fulfill the requirements for an Operator's Permit (not a proctored exam).

This material covers:

  • Rules of the road
  • Required safety equipment
  • Navigation aids
  • Lights and sounds
  • Anchoring
  • Communications
  • Adverse conditions
  • Water sports safety
  • Trailering
  • Personal watercraft safety
  • State and local regulations
  • Knots and lines handling
bullet Access to America's Boating Course online course
bullet Comprehensive full color downloadable course manual
bullet Online Exam except where not permitted by certain states.

Learn the basics of boating at your own pace, at home or away, with the U.S. Coast Guard recognized America's Boating Course.

This course or equivalent course is required for Minnetonka Squadron Island Stickers/Access; if you are a new member or know of people considering membership, this is your class!

Boat Handling

Boat Handling (Advanced Grade) - On Demand

Materials Fee: $67.50
Dates: On Demand
Location: https://uspsonline.enrolmart.com/

Boat Handling, formerly Seamanship, is available on demand and successfully passing the final exam will earn you an Advanced Grade (S). An Advanced Grade is necessary for all members who want to have Minnetonka Island Privileges. You must earn an Advanced Grade before the start of the third summer of your membership to qualify for an island use sticker.

Boat Handing is intended for newer recreational boaters who have completed a basic boating class (i.e. Americas's Boating Course) and want to learn more about skilled boat handling in a variety of situations. It is offered as a complete course covering six topics.

The six modules in Boat handling are:

  • Rules of the Road:  A Practical Approach
  • Confidence in Docking and  Undocking: Slow-Speed Maneuvering
  • Boating with Confidence:  Handling Your Boat Under Way
  • Anchoring with Assurance:  Don’t Get Carried Away
  • Emergencies on Board:  Preparation for Handling Common Problems
  • Knots and Line Handling:  Knots You Need to Know

For more information contact the Minnetonka Power Squadron Education Officer at  education@minnetonkaps.org

Marine Navigation

Marine Navigation (Advanced Grade) - On Demand

Materials Fee: $67.50
Dates: On Demand
Location: https://uspsonline.enrolmart.com/

Marine Navigation teaches you how to chart and follow a course on the water. It is a full course offered by the United States Power Squadrons, America’s Boating Club. This online, self-study course consists of a comprehensive student guide, six fully narrated online modules, a practice cruise with answers, and an optional online exam. The practice cruise gives the student practical, hands-on experience in charting. The narrated modules present like classroom PowerPoint presentations but give the student total control of the pace and sequence of the slides.

Members successfully completing of this course will earn an Advanced Grade (P).

The course covers the following:

  • Planning
  • Electronic Navigation using OpenCPN
  • Paper Chart Navigation
  • Navigating Coastal Waterways
  • Navigating Inland Waterways

The online test covers material contained in the Student Guide, the online modules and the practice cruise. This course is the replacement for the Piloting course. Members of America's Boating Club who take this online course and pass the online exam will get credit for Marine Navigation the same as if they had taken the course in a classroom setting. Many boat insurance companies offer savings for America's Boating Club courses.

Typically, Marine Navigation is taken after Boat Handling and before Advanced Marine Navigation, although the sequence of course completion is left to the individual student.

For more information contact the Minnetonka Power Squadron Education Officer at  education@minnetonkaps.org

Vessel Safety Examiner Certification

Members of America's Boating Club are encouraged to become Vessal Safety Examiners (VSC).  The VSC program helps to boaters achieve voluntary compliance with federal and state recreational boating safety laws, particularly regarding helping ensure boaters have the necessary safety equipment. It also raises boaters' awareness of safety issues through one-on-one inspection of the owner's boat by volunteer vessel examiners.  This service is a fundemental part of what our boating club is all about.  If you are interested in becoming part of the Vessal Safety Examiner team, please the "Learn More" button below or contact the Minnetonka Power Squadron Administrative Officer at  vsc@minnetonkaps.org to get more information.

Inland Navigator Certification

Materials Fee: $50

Inland Navigator is the first level of the BOC program. The focus is on basic powerboat operation and general boating knowledge. The Basic Powerboat Handling skills are the same skills included in the Hands-On Training (HOT) program.

By registering (click the button below) you will receive the IN Starter Kit which includes a copy of "Start Boating Right" and a passport to recored your progress towards the Inland Navigator Certificate. Your passport will be signed by your instructors as you complete a skill, course, or seminar.

Inland Navigator Requirements

  • Americas Boating Course
  • Boat Handling (Seamanship) Course
  • Marine Electrical Systems Course
  • How To Use a Chart Seminar (or Marine Navigation Course)
  • Basic Weather & Forecasting Seminar (Online)
  • Using Your GPS Seminar (or Marina Navigation Course)
  • Using VHF and VHF/DSC Marine Radio Seminar (Online)
  • Basic Powerboat Handling (OTW Training)
  • Use of Fire Extinguishers

Please contact education@minnetonkaps.org for more information.

Coastal Navigator Certification

Materials Fee: $50

Coastal Navigator (CN) is the second level of the BOC program. The focus is on coastal operation and coastal navigation. Inland Navigator certification is a prerequisite.

By registering (click the button below) you will receive the CN Starter Kit which includes a passport to record your progress towards the Coastal Navigator Certificate and a Marine Calculator. Your passport will be signed by your instructors as you complete a skill, course, or seminar.

Coastal Navigator Requirements

Please contact education@minnetonkaps.org for more information.


Marine Electrical Systems (Elective Course)

Materials Fee: $75
Dates: March 5 - April 23 (Tuesdays) @ 7:00 PM
Location: Online Webinar (Zoom)

Marine Electrical Systems (MES) covers the practice of wiring your boat, including boat electrical wiring practices and diagrams, direct and alternating current power, galvanic and stray current corrosion, and lightning protection. Troubleshooting is emphasized throughout, so students should feel comfortable performing even tricky wiring tasks after passing this course.


Mariner's Compass Seminar

Materials Fee: $25
Dates: April 13, 2024 from 1:30 - 2:30 pm
Location: Minneapolis Marriott West (D10 Spring Conference)

Even in the electronics age, a compass is essential for safe boating.  Learn how to select and install a compass on your boat, which features are most important and what will work best for you, how to deal with variation between true and magnetic north, and how to adjust your compass to remove most of the deviation caused by local magnetic influences..

Advanced Piloting Course Image


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