Want to know how to have a great regatta weekend? Simply follow this recipe:

Recipe For a Great Regatta Weekend


5 ripe sailors

7 seasoned parents

1 very patient older sister

2 coaches

5 square boats


1 lb of pretzel “bities”

4 boxes of Gushers

5 delicious looking fruit cups*

2 lbs of king crab legs

1 semi-fictional character named Léllé

A few gallons of fresh salt water

A handful of radio flavored butters

1 C sunscreen

1 catch phrase repeated ad nauseum (i.e., “How neat is that?” reply, “That’s pretty neat!”)

2 stingrays

4 races

At least 3 million CCs of coffee

Add jokes, laughter, and perfectly hysterical shenanigans to taste


Preheat oven to 75° F. Turn fan on low. Adjust for lower altitude cooking. Fly east for 3.5 hours. Arrive at destination well past midnight. Lose 2 hours. Awaken at 8:30am (feels like 6:30am) to phone call from incredibly enthusiastic sailor asking if you’re at the sailing center yet. Blink. Check time. Breathe. Hear that charter boats have been acquired, sailor has checked in, now waiting for sails. Remind sailor of 12:00pm harbor start (for practice). Ask if he slept AT ALL.  Request sailor take break and retrieve 1000 CCs of coffee for very tired father.

Arrive at sailing center (earlier than anticipated).

Procure RIB. Rig boats (2+ hours); retie, redirect, re-rig, refocus, re-answer, rinse, repeat. Review SIs, forecast, tides and current. Relay information to sailors. Reapply sunscreen, lunch, and launch.

Practice in dying breeze. Enjoy the scenery. Experience current. Hear about current induced frustrations. Use as teachable moment: “There is no good, there is no bad; there is only prepared and unprepared.”

Return. De-rig. Dinner.

Enjoy team meal. Watch sailor bug-eye at giant crab legs. Hear server explain and demonstrate bare-hand cracking technique. Listen to 5 sailors (add older sister) collectively stew fantasy tale of “Léllé” – strongest sea server that ever lived. Heavily season with smiles, laughter, and very content parents. Retire.

Awaken at 6:30am (feels like 4:30am) acquire 2000 CCs of coffee. Return to sailing center. Rig (1 hour). Launch. Tow. Marvel at efficient Race Committee and crew. Witness Race 1. Watch 79 sailors battle head-on current, chop and light breeze. Sympathetically cringe. Recount lessons learned from day prior. Witness Race 2. Repeat same feelings from Race 1.

Watch breeze die. Collect sailors in RIB. Marinate 4 hours. Play “car” games. Laugh about Léllé. Explode 1lb of pretzel “bities” in boat. Watch soak into mush. Create new language. Eat box of Gushers. Hear tale of “Matthew Nutt, who loves to eat crackers made of butter, whose favorite flavor is radio, and who’s favorite color is Friday.” Watch silliness skyrocket and eventually
plummet in unison with crashing blood sugar levels. Add dash of loopy. Send video to sailor too sick to make it this weekend. Consume second box of Gushers. Collectively laugh at nothing.  Hear screams of pure joy at sound of 3 horns. Groan upon hearing earlier start announcement. Retreat.

Return unopened fruit cups to hotel fridge. Shower. Dawn adult clothing. Report to yacht club. Laugh at hearing catch phrase infiltrate parent conversation. Regatta dinner, raffle, retire.

Awaken at 5:45am (feels like 3:45am). Contemplate doubling CCs of coffee. Arrive at sailing center. Rig in thick fog. Giggle at hearing sailor say, “I smell funny.” Launch in twilight. Fly CO flag. Smile and wave to parents. Witness Race 3. Watch 79 boats fight favorable current at start. Affirm General Recall. Explain “I flag.” Watch 9 boats misunderstand meaning of “I flag” at second start. Witness 32 boats get swept up current beyond layline. Repeat for Race 4. Look on with pride as sailor refuses to involve himself in screaming match. Relay pride to sailor. Jump at the scream of startled sailor suddenly seeing two stingrays, apparently “hugging.”

Watch start of race 5. Affirm General Recall for lack of wind. Listen to 25 sailors still yelling “leeward” after general recall signal. Smile at their lack of awareness. Pause. Hear 3 horns signaling the end of the regatta. Listen as 79 instantly jubilant sailors (still recovering from yesterday’s PTSD inducing 4-hour float) cheer at the mercy of the Race Committee. Retreat. Derig and consume last box of Gushers.

Pretend not to witness 3 sailors conquer sailing center with hoisted CO flag. Eventually remove. Take group photos under said flag. Smile, laugh, hug, repeat until cheeks hurt. Opt for pools and patios over waiting hours for awards ceremony meant for others. Stop by yacht club for sailor’s first official burgee exchange. Feel the magic. Take lots of photos.

Return untouched, now less delicious looking fruit cups to hotel fridge. Sigh. Receive text hours later with news of apparent CSC trophies based on small age bracket sized fleets. Feel like a beginner for not realizing this sooner. Retrieve trophies. Surprise unsuspecting sailors at pools with trophies!

Enjoy dinner with sailor and parent. Witness sailor eat king crab legs for first time. Dodge flying crab shrapnel. Write new chapter in Léllé saga. Douse with laughter, jokes, and addictive catch phrase. Repeat until stomach aches from laughing.


Awaken at 5:15am (feels like 3:15am). Curse rapidly growing caffeine tolerance for requiring 3000 CCs of coffee. Stare at large ski bag filled with sails. Laugh at thought of awkwardly struggling it into the elevator again. Laugh again at visualizing facial expression of airport clerk’s realization that said ski bag’s destination was Florida. Conclude that questionable insanity was likely responsible for not being charged oversized baggage fees. Snap out of comical reverie with profound awareness of sleep deprivation. Abandon, now, marginal looking fruit cups in hotel fridge.

Arrive at airport with sailors and parents. Reminisce about amazing weekend. Board plane. Wait. Disembark back off plane to news of fuel pump issue. Hear groans. Secretly smile at thought of spending more time laughing and joking with sailors and parents. Marinate for next 4 postponed hours, laughing, and joking with sailors and parents. Experience joyful déjà vu. Logically come to the conclusion that Tuesdays do, in fact, sound like yellow. Blame Matthew Nutt.

Eventually return home full of gratitude and pride for associating with this young group of very fun, VERY FUNNY sailors along with the one and only Superhero Squad of Topnotch Parents, knowing NONE of this would have been possible without their amazing teamwork.

Remove from oven. Let cool. Store at room temperature. Does not freeze well.

Recipe serves 14. *Fruit cups optional.