Beverly Yacht Club hosts 60th Junior Regatta

Aug 17, 2023

MARION — Eleven-year-old Graham Greenwalt was determined to hold his title as the first ranking sailor in the Optimist Green class during the Beverly Yacht Club’s 60th annual Junior Regatta on Wednesday, Aug. 17. 

“You just have to keep going and plow through,” he said. “I learned a lot about sailing your own race and not paying attention to anyone else.”

According to Beverly Yacht Club Junior Regatta committee chair Wes McMicheal, the Junior Regatta is an annual sailing race for young sailors. Each race is categorized by experience level, with Optimist green sailors being beginners and the C420 group being experts.

Participants in the Optimist classes sail boats with one sail while the C420 group have two sails according to McMichael. 

“Everyone comes together at the end of the summer for a race and it’s a lot of fun,” he said. 

Before setting sail on Sippican Harbor, Greenwalt and other young sailors loosened their sails in preparation for strong winds — a lesson put to the test during the first stormy day of the Junior Regatta on Tuesday, Aug. 18. 

“It was terrible conditions yesterday,” said Greenwalt who explained that the strong winds caused many participants' boats to capsize. “I am getting mentally prepared.”

Ten-year-old Mae Hudak was excited by the possibility of capsizing. 

“You get to go swimming and you get to chill out for a bit,” said Hudak. 

Although gray clouds loomed over Buzzards Bay, luckily for participants the winds stayed calm for smooth sailing. 

Greenwalt smiled brightly as he steered his single-handed sailing dinghy around the buoy marking the end of the finish line. 

Greenwalt held first place in the Optimist Green class, while Bennett Glennon took home first in the Optimist class. Peter Herlihy and Finn Sperry took home first place for the C420 class.