Thousands of rowers from around the world will make their way to San Diego’s Mission Bay this weekend for the 41st Annual San Diego Crew Classic – the first major regatta of the year.
It all begins Friday with the arrival of athletes from more than 100 universities, clubs and high school programs across the United States. Rowers will practice all day at Crown Point Shores and spectators can watch the boats practice on the course, for free, all day.
From 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., there will be a Sierra Nevada Beer Garden open in the area. At 5 p.m., after a day of rowing, a pasta party will be held at the Champions Pavilion, a big tent on the hill. The cost of this dinnertime shindig is $15 at the door.
On Saturday, the competition begins.
At 5 a.m., a free shuttle service for spectators begins between Ski Beach and Crown Point Shores.
The main gate opens for spectators at 6 a.m. and racing begins at 7:20 a.m. The course begins near SeaWorld and the Ingraham Street Bridge, then heads north along Mission Bay for 2,000 meters before finishing at Crown Point Shores.
The beer garden opens at 10 a.m. for spectators who like to watch the races with a brew in hand. The races wrap up at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday.
On Sunday, the schedule is similar, with a shuttle service beginning at 5 a.m. and the races starting at 7:20 a.m. Racing concludes at 3:30 p.m.
Tickets to the San Diego Crew Classic cost $12 per spectator if purchased in advance or $15 at the door.
Besides racing, the outdoor event will also include live music, a trade show, a kids’ zone, artist’s booths and alumni tents from racers’ schools. A Jumbotron will provide an up-close view of the races.
According to organizers, the rowers participating in the Crew Classic range in age from 14 to 84. Over the course of the year leading up to the competition, the rowers compete in more than 100 races in various divisions in preparation for the premiere rowing event.
Organizers say the “master level” – rowers over 21 years old – is the fastest growing segment of the sport. While many master level rowers are still novices to the sport, others are reliving their college and club experiences by participating in the Crew Classic year after year.
To get more details on this event, visit this website.