Start The Summer Celebrating Sailing

Published on June 23rd, 2018

by John Arndt, Summer Sailstice
You only get so many summers and, if you’re a sailor, you should take full advantage of them. Summer has more daylight, lighter work schedules, and school vacations making it an ideal time for more sailing.

The annual Summer Sailstice holiday, held on the weekend closest to the solstice was created to unite all sailors in a common celebration of sailing. Racers race, cruisers cruise, daysailors just sail around. However you sail, the weekend of June 23rd is the first weekend of summer and no sail should remain furled.

It happens wherever you sail. Grab some friends, hoist the sails, have a laugh. What better way is there to spend a summer weekend? This weekend marks the 18th annual Sailstice celebration. Individuals and organizations up and down the coasts and across the planet start the summer by signing up and sharing where and how they plan to sail this weekend, while also having a shot at prizes supplied by marine industry favorites.

Beyond uniting the sailing world, one purpose of Summer Sailstice is ‘myth busting’. Really, we’re not all Larry Ellison. You can argue that sailing is expensive, but the vast majority of sailors don’t even own a sailboat — they crew. Most sailboats are under 20 feet. Most sailors probably started on something like a Sunfish, and for many, that’s all they ever want. If you take friends sailing this weekend it may only cost them sandwiches. Sailing is one of the very best reasons to live near the water, and Summer Sailstice helps us share it with our shore-bound friends.

The simple but audacious idea is to showcase the whole word of sailing on just one weekend. Sure, some think a wedding or graduation is an acceptable alternative, but really, these don’t take all weekend, and, after all, they’ll have pictures. Would you rather be at a graduation looking at Instagrams of people sailing, or sailing and looking at Instagrams of a graduation. Easy choice.

Now is an ideal time to sail which is why the Volvo Ocean Race is underway, as is the Clipper Round the World Race, the Singlehanded Transpac, Cleveland Race Week, the 52 Super Series and numerous other headline grabbing events. But beyond the headlines is your kind of sailing. The kind of real-world sailing most people do, most of the time. It’s for the Sunfish, the Hobie Cat, the Beetle Cat and numerous other boats people launch just for friends, family and summer. Of course, Larry Ellison and everyone is welcome to join participate, but if you don’t sign up, the headlines will forever be filled with the extremes of sailing and not the soul of sailing.

This weekend, no sail should remain wrapped on the boom and no true friend should be left on shore. Check out who’s sailing where at, then add your plans and get on the water this weekend and all summer long.


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