Yes you read the headline right. While the Summer Solstice celebrates the first day of Summer on June 21st, the Summer Sailstice celebrates the beginning of the sailing season. This year the 13th annual event will take place on Saturday June 22, 2013.
Summer Sailstice was started in February 2001 by John Arndt, to be a global, annual celebration of sailing held on the summer solstice. John Arndt is Associate Publisher at Latitude 38, a premier West Coast sailing publication and has been instrumental in getting the sailing world involved in this annual event as well as educating the public on sailing.
John’s lifelong passion for sailing has involved thousands of miles of racing and cruising, plus 25 years spent professionally in the sailing industry. His sailing experience includes several Bermuda races, One Design racing, Collegiate racing, two winter seasons cruising the Caribbean, sailing in Europe and the Mediterranean plus lots of sunny afternoon sails aboard all kinds of boats in San Francisco Bay.
John’s wife, Leslie and his two daughters, Sarah and Hannah, sail their 1974 Ranger 33 ‘Summer Sailstice’, and their DeWitt dinghy from the Corinthian Yacht Club in Tiburon on San Francisco Bay whenever they can.
Every year, Summer Sailstice connects over 19,000 sailors all over the world—cruisers, racers and recreational—to celebrate and showcase life under sail. It has expanded to include participants from Asia, across the Americas and Europe.
By visiting the events website people can upload sailing plans and you could win a cruise in the Caribbean or any of dozens of other prizes including charters, gear, boating services, and more. Sailors can also win prizes by entering one of the many Summer Sailstice contests. An interactive map shows all the planned events worldwide and people can connect and join in with other enthusiasts.
Those without a boat can even arrange a charter for the day from one of the events sponsors.
Through a partnership the ocean conservation non-profits, Sailors for the Sea and Ocean Conservancy, Summer Sailstice strives to inform and mobilize sailors, their families and communities to enjoy and conserve the beauty of the oceans while raising awareness of human impacts on the fragile marine environment and wildlife
This year’s event looks to continue the original mission of bringing the sailing community together, bring awareness to marine conservation and educate people to the fun of being on the water in one of the many types of sailing vessels.
Whether you are a sailor or have always been fascinated by the thought of sailing you can connect with others and enjoy the camaraderie or maybe sweet talk a skipper in giving you day out on the water.