Categories: Festivals/Events, Free, Outdoor Activities

All Aboard! 5 Things You Need to Know About Charlottetown’s Race Week

From July 12th to July 14th, 2018 the Charlottetown harbour will play host to the Charlottetown Yacht Club East Coast Docks Race Week. That’s the official title for what is better known as ‘Charlottetown Race Week’, a premiere sailing regatta on the Northumberland Strait that will feature 3 days of exhilarating sailboat racing and lively night time entertainment. With plenty to take in for both sailors and spectators, this 33rd edition of the event is ‘shore’ to be a good time! Check out 5 Things You Need to Know About Charlottetown’s Race Week, then get your sailor’s hat on and head to the waterfront!

1. These are the Best Places to Watch the Races

Photo Submitted by Charlottetown Yacht Club

There are a number of places along the waterfront that are ideal for watching the races. The first and most obvious is the Charlottetown Yacht Club. Snag yourself a spot on the front lawn, or watch from the Yacht Club’s Lower or Upper Deck.

Photo Credit: Brett Everett James via IG 

Another great vantage point is Queen’s Wharf at the foot of Queen Street, where you'll find several Adirondack chairs available to the public. While you’re there, be sure to get a pic with the large 2018 and tag #DiscoverCharlottetown.

Victoria Park is another great option, especially if you want to pair your spectating with a delicious ice cream cone from the on-site dairy bar or set up a picnic.

Picnic at Victoria Park while you watch the races. 

Finally, if you’re looking to add some gorgeous countryside views into your itinerary, head out to nearby Skmaqn–Port-la-Joye–Fort Amherst. This National Historic Site is located a short 15 minute drive from downtown Charlottetown in Rocky Point. Aside from stellar views of the Northumberland Strait, the site boasts a notable and distinguished history. 


2. These Are the Best Times to Get Your Spectating In!

From Thursday, July 12 to Saturday, July 14, sailing races will be taking place all day. Spectators can catch various parts of race day, depending on what floats their boat:

8:30- 10AM - Crews will be arriving at the Charlottetown Yacht Club, rigging and preparing their boats for race day.

10AM – Boats will be leaving the Charlottetown Yacht Club for the race course

3PM– 5PM – Boats will be returning to the Charlottetown Yacht Club from the race course


3. There ARE Rules to Be Followed!

Photo Submitted by Charlottetown Yacht Club

It’s always important as a spectator to understand the rules of the sport you’re watching. There are plenty of rules in sailboat racing, but one of the most important is determining who has the right of way. Since there are no intersections, stop signs or traffic lights on the water, the boat that has the right of way is the one that has the wind hitting the right side of the boat first - also known as the starboard side of the boat.  

4. You Can Join the Sailors for a Night Out on the Town

Photo Credit: lauraecoady via IG

By day they race their sail boats, by night they celebrate and socialize! Join the competing sailors and other spectators for a night out on the town during Charlottetown Race Week. There's something planned for every night:

Thursday Evening –  Take part in the sailors’ reception at the Merchantman’s outdoor to the public at 9:00 PM

Friday Evening – Sailors’ Night Out at Peake’s Quay, Join the fun!

Saturday Evening – Closing party at the Charlottetown Yacht Club with live music by The Wrecking Crew. Everyone is welcome!


5.  You Can Get Out on the Water Too!

Whether you're a complete newbie or an old hand at sailing, the Charlottetown Yacht Club offers plenty of opportunities for folks at every skill level to get out on the water, whether it be in a kayak, on a paddleboard or on a classic sailboat. Tours and lessons are available during Race Week and all summer long.