West Marine Opens BlueFuture 2018 Grant Cycle

Nonprofit Organizations dedicated to youth waterlife adventure, education and stewardship encouraged to apply for grant funding for two consecutive months (April-May)

Watsonville, CA, Mar 29, 2018 - On Sun., April 1, West Marine will begin accepting applications for its 2018 BlueFuture grants. The singular 2018 grant cycle will run for two months through Thurs., May 31, with the names of grant recipients to be announced by mid-summer.

Encouraged to apply are nonprofit, community-based organizations that teach sailing, powerboating, fishing, paddling or surfing; provide boatbuilding instruction; foster aquatic sustainability and conservation practices; or encourage learning in the marine sciences. The $1,500 grants are given without restriction; in other words, grant recipients are free to use the funds as they see fit to operate their respective programs.

“West Marine’s BlueFuture grants are dedicated to help getting more kids out and around the water, no matter what their circumstances may be,” says Doug Robinson, West Marine’s Chief Executive Officer. “As a company, we have been amazed at the number of nonprofits dedicated to helping America’s children learn about life on and by the water. Through this program, West Marine wants to help as many children as possible enjoy the same opportunities our associates have had growing up.”

Starting April 1, interested applicants need only visit www.westmarine.com/BlueFuture, click “Grant Info,” and fill out and submit an online form. A team of West Marine judges will review the applications after the grant period closes on May31 and will announce the 50 winners within a few weeks.

“Our team is passionate about the BlueFuture program, and we look forward to the applications we receive,” Robinson says. “There are many worthy organizations from all over the country, with staff and volunteers working incredibly hard to meet the needs of their local communities. We’re thrilled to do what we can to support their efforts.”

West Marine created its nonprofit BlueFuture program in May 2015 to provide critical grant funding to charities across North America. They conduct three fundraisers each year to support the fund’s growth: One is in conjunction with National Safe Boating Week in May; the second commemorates World Oceans Day in June; and the third is the Month of Giving in December. It also encourages year-round donations through its website at www.westmarine.com/BlueFuture

The BlueFuture fund is a donor-advised fund through the Community Foundation of Santa Cruz. All donations are fully tax-deductible, and each year, West Marine awards grants to worthy nonprofit organizations across North America. These much-needed funds allow the community-based groups to provide scholarships, purchase new equipment, maintain staff, add programs and so much more.

To learn more about West Marine’s 2018 BlueFuture grants and to submit an application, and for detailed information about the company’s BlueFuture initiative and how you can help, visit www.westmarine.com/BlueFuture

About West Marine

Each person has a unique connection to the water. At West Marine, our knowledge, enthusiasm and products prepare Waterlife adventurers to foster that connection and explore their passions. With more than 250 stores located in 38 states and Puerto Rico and an eCommerce website reaching domestic, international and professional customers, West Marine is recognized as a leading Waterlife Outfitter for cruisers, sailors, anglers and paddlesports enthusiasts. Since first opening our doors in 1968, West Marine associates continue to share the same love for the water as our customers and provide helpful advice on the gear and gadgets they need to be safe and have fun. To learn more about West Marine, please visit the West Marine website at westmarine.com

Media Contact

Margo Donohue | press@westmarine.com | 917.679.6945