The Shelburne Harbour Yacht Club will be welcoming the world this summer for the 2019 Albacore International Championship Regatta.
At least 50 teams from throughout North America and Europe are expected to compete in the event, scheduled to run from Aug. 24 to 30.
In the works for a year or more, the yacht club got the financial boost they needed to host the world-class event with a funding announcement on Feb. 23 of almost $70,000 through ACOA’s Innovative Communities Fund by South Shore St. Margaret’s MP Minister Bernadette Jordan.
“Hosting the international albacore championships will go a long way towards promoting this beautiful historical town as a world calibre event destination,” said Minister Jordan when making the announcement at the yacht club.
“The Government of Canada is committed to growing the economy (and) knows tourism helps grow the economy. That’s why we’re taking concrete action to promote the region as a world class tourism destination through the Atlantic Growth Strategy,” she said. “As minister of rural economic development, I’m keenly aware that tourism plays an essential role in our province’s economy. Investing in tourism throughout the region is essential to growing this important economic sector. These investments create economic growth by attracting new visitors, growing local businesses and creating new ones.”
The support will go towards infrastructure upgrades, marketing, skills training and accommodations for the anticipated 500 room nights (50 rooms for 10 days) from sailors, volunteers, and spectators.
The Town of Shelburne is contributing $40,000 towards the $110,917 project.
The Municipality of the District of Shelburne is providing $1,000.
“Today we celebrate a major milestone in our journey towards this regatta,” said Brad Wilson, chair of the host committee.
“It will bring tourists, competitors and economic activity to Shelburne, but more than that the infrastructure required for this regatta will remain to advance sailing in Shelburne, providing a lasting facility for better training, more regattas, beatification of the waterfront and the greater enjoyment of residents and visitors to Shelburne for years to come,” he said.
Wilson said local support is key to hosting a world-class event, announcing that Shelburne Wood Workers Home Hardware will be the major sponsor for the event.
“Today is also a call to arms for every sailor, every business, every adult, every youth to join us in this regatta,” said Wilson. “To participate, donate your time, your labour, your dollars. Get involved. Be part of something we can be proud of for years to come. An army of volunteers will be required for this event.”
The Albacore International Championship Regatta is a sailing championship involving 15-foot long sailing dinghies, a popular sailboat class in North America and Europe. The event will feature onshore activities in addition to racing.