Thetis Island Regatta - everyone loves a good race around the island
Thetis Island Regatta,
sponsored by the Thetis Island Marina
by Adrian Biffen
If it's early spring in this part of the world,
there is a sailing event that has become a ritual, welcoming the coming warm season. It is the Thetis Island Regatta, a race around the island, staged in May by the good folks at the Thetis Island Marina & Pub.
This tiny little island is situated in the protected waters of the inner Gulf Islands in the Straight of Georgia, almost attached to its sister island (Kuper), and has long been a favorite stopping place for boaters of all kinds.
This early season race draws sailboats from many different ports on the straight; everyone is ready to stretch their sailing muscles, wipe away the cobwebs, have a good party, and be glad the winter is past with summer on the way!
People start arriving at the docks a day or two before the event, and it quickly grows into a major happening - a lot of fun to be had by all.
The boats are rated, and the race is run in 3 different classes, each having a different start time. The race course is essentially a circumnavigation of both Thetis and Kuper Islands. After the race, the festivities culminate in a huge barbeque feast, put on by the Marina.
Sponsors for the regatta in 2004 were Okanagan Spring/Shaftbury Brewery, Mount Gay Rum, Premium Beer Company, Owen Business Systems, Pacific Yachting, Sea Snaps Marine Photography, and Jim Beam.
For more info, visit the Thetis Island Marina website
Summer solstice sunset at Valdez Island,
near Thetis Island. Pirate's Cove Provincial Marine Park on DeCourcey Island is in the background: