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Event - Coconut Cup Regatta 

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Ninth Annual Coconut Cup Regatta

There’s a new lineup of events for the Ninth Annual Coconut Cup Regatta, which is being held on the weekend of Saturday, March 25.

The start of the ongoing party will be a $5-a-head brunch and captain’s meeting at 10:30am at the Marshall Islands Resort. “Everyone will have a chance at the meeting to get a ride on a boat,” said Cup committee guy Don Hess. “Even if people don’t get onto a yacht, they’ll be welcome on Kirt Pinho’s barge.

For the first time in a swag of years, there will be four divisions in the race: traditional canoes, modern yachts, dinghies and windsurfers. The last of these will be a hotly contested race between (amongst others) EPA consultant Caleb McClennen and EZ Price Mart’s Neal Skinner, who have been out on the lagoon practicing for months.

Two yachts are planning on sailing from Kwajalein Atoll to take part in the race, while Don is predicting that “about 20 people from Kwaj are going to fly down here.”

Following tradition, the canoes will be first across the line at 2pm, with the rest of the fleet starting about 15 minutes later.

In past years, the race start has been in front of the RRE Shoreline area, however this year the committee has moved it to the regular starting place for Mieco Beach Yacht Club races, which is off the Marshall Islands Resort. It is expected the boats will sail around all the major vessels anchored in the lagoon and do the circuit twice.

Following the race, all the skippers and crew are invited to the mega-party at the Boknake in the grounds of RRE Hotel. “There will be a live band with Jerry Ross on lead guitar and Caleb on sax … as well as others,” said Don.

On Sunday, everyone is invited to a picnic at Enemanet, which will include a barbecue lunch for $10 a head. “We’re hoping the yachts will take lots of crew in the race and help to get some people to the island,” Don said. In return, each yacht will receive two free tickets for both the Saturday brunch and the Sunday picnic.

On Monday evening, the Kwajalein Yacht Club is hosting a cocktails and pupus soiree at the Marshall Islands Resort.

This year’s Cup committee is made up of Don, Kirt, Janet Hess, Jens Yeager, Richard Hickson, Alson Kelen, Hirobo Obeketang, and Barney van Auken. In the next few days and weeks, these good folk will be out and about gathering prizes for the skippers, with the cash prizes going to the canoe guys. Be generous: It’s a good cause.

Good luck to all competitors!

Mieco Beach Yacht Club.

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