Known for competitive racing and serious post−event festivities for the past two decades, the Essex Rum Challenge has become a centerpiece of Long Island Sound summer regattas, attracting large fleets of participants from the tri−state area and beyond. This year’s off−shore event goes off at approximately 11:30 a.m., subject to race committee and conditions on the water, and wraps up on shore with a barbecue, beverages including Bermuda’s National cocktail, the DARK ‘N STORMY®, music, dancing, and awards presentation on the grounds of the Essex Yacht Club. One design racing in the Ideal 18 class will be held the following day, Sunday July 31st, on the Connecticut River off of the EYC clubhouse. A number of participants from area yacht clubs with Ideal 18 programs are expected to turn out. The entry fee is $1 per foot per yacht with entries closing at noon on Friday, July 29th. The Skipper’s Meeting will be held later in the day on Friday at 6 p.m. at Essex Yacht Club. Party tickets are $10 per person with entry. Extra party only tickets are $15 per person and may be purchased at the door if they are available. Entries including the required valid ECSA PHRF certificate should be mailed to Essex Yacht Club, 13 Novelty Lane, Essex, CT 06426 The Club will also offer discounted moorings to participating yachts on a first come, first served basis. Those interested should call 860−767−8121 for details. For more information and printable entry forms, go to www.essexyc.com. Essex Yacht Club was founded in 1933 and is located on the banks of the Connecticut River in historic Essex Village. Steeped in a long tradition of racing and cruising, Essex is a popular port for the East Coast boating community.