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Erie Power Squadron


Public Boating courses 






Our next America's Boating Course will start on March 4, 2024 at the Bayfront Maritime Center.  Please contact Tom Pallotta at (814) 866-2058 or email erieps@gmail.com with any questions you may have regarding the next course.  We can respond by email or call you back personally, whichever you prefer.  Also, it is possible to request the test only, if you are an experienced boater.

Items included in this course are basic boating terminology, boat handling, water sports safety, PWC's, legally required equipment, boating regulations, right of way rules, and marine radios.  In addition, the course also looks at basics of reading nautical charts, basics of plotting a course, and GPS's.


The Erie Power Squadron also offers the America's Boating Course through the United States Power Squadron website. It is an online course with a proctored test.  You study the class online and call us for a proctored test.  If you are interested, check it out online or call Tom Pallotta at (814) 866-2058 or email erieps@gmail.com with any questions.



A free 6 month membership in The United States Power Squadrons comes with the successful completion of the boating course.


It is now law in Pennsylvania that all boaters who were born on or after January 1, 1982 and operate a motorboat greater than 25hp or any personal watercraft owner regardless of age, must take a boating course to be legal on the water.  No one 11 years of age or younger is legal.

Residents of other states, born January 1, 1982 or later are legal for 60 days if certified in their home state.


We are now allowed to offer our internal classes to the public.  For more information, please contact Tom Pallotta at (814) 866-2058 or email erieps@gmail.com for more information.


We also have seminars that may be offered in the future. These seminars include:

Advanced Power Boat Handling


Basic Coastal Navigation

Boat Handling under Power

Boating on Rivers, Locks and Lakes

Emergencies on Board

Fuel and Boating

How to use a Chart

Hurricanes and Boats

Knots, Bends and Hitches

Marine Radar

Mariner's Compass

Mastering the Rules of the Road

Onboard Weather Forcasting

Paddle Smart

Partner in Command

Sail Trim and Rig Tuning

Tides and Currents

Trailering your Boat

Using GPS

Using VHF & VHF/DSC Marine Radios

We do not have a date for any seminar at this time, but if you are interested in any of these.  Please contact Tom Pallotta at (814) 866-2058 or email erieps@gmail.com and let us know which seminars interest you most.  If you would like in depth information on the seminars click here.




  How to join the Power Squadron

After completing and passing the proctored exam for a safe boating course you have completed the prerequisite for becoming a member of the USPS.   Normally one of the power squadron members will approach you about joining the squadron. If this does not happen then you approach one of the members and he/she will sit down and explain the benefits of being a member. After that there is a short form to fill out and you are on your way to an new exciting boating education treat!

    The USPS Ensign (Flag Design) ,"Wheel-and-Flag Design", "Officer Trident Design", "United States Power Squadrons", "USPS", "The Ensign", "the Squadron" with flag graphic, "Boat Smart", "America's Boating Club", and "Jet Smart" are registered trademarks of United States Power Squadrons.

Last Update: November 18, 2023