The 2022 Camden Classic Cup on July 28-30 was a reminder of why Maine is one of the most celebrated sailing coastlines in the world. During two days of racing, 92 boats, including some of the region’s most beautiful historic sailing yachts, navigated Western Penobscot Bay under sunny skies and mostly westerly 15-knot winds for the 6th successful iteration of this classic yacht regatta.
“Yesterday was the kind of day that sailors live for, the chance to sail yachts of this caliber on Penobscot Bay in a good breeze mints the kind of memories that last long after the racing sails are flaked,” said Holly Paterson, event director of the race in a press release.
After a day that started with the Parade of Sail through Camden’s Inner Harbor, the crew of Leaf, a Luders 24 out of Bokeelia, Florida, happily hoisted their winner’s trophy before heading off to the afterparty.
“It’s hard to not say the party after the whole thing is done is the best part,” said Scott Layton, broker at boatbuilder Lyman-Morse, which hosted the race for the sixth year in a row and had two boats on the scratch sheet.
Along with an ideal race course and the excellent parties, the Camden Classic is gaining in popularity for the onshore events that surround the race.
“Any event the town organizes is great, they make people want to spend a lot more time in town and it makes everything much more happening and fun,” said Paula Palakawong, owner of Long Grain, a renowned Camden restaurant and one of the race organizer’s recommended dining spots.
The regatta began as a celebration of classic yachts, and also as a fundraiser for LifeFlight of Maine, a medical service. Sponsors of the race have raised more than $75,000.
“We’re proud to partner through this Regatta and pleased that funding will benefit LifeFlight of Maine, and their highly-specialized first responders who bring critical care to Mainers, allowing us to safely enjoy events like this,” said Leah Nickerson of Bangor Savings Bank, which sponsored the Parade of Sail.
That thread of community spirit is central to the whole event:
“We are the hosts of the Camden Classic Cup, but it is very much a collaborative process from the community, sponsors, volunteers and many partners in the industry to organize and put on this event,” Layton said.