A First in 118 Years: Newport Bermuda Race to Begin at Fort Adams

On June 21, Fort Adams State Park will come alive with the sights and sounds of sailing’s most historic event, the Newport Bermuda Race, kicking off with a spectacular Starting Line Party and Live Show. This year’s celebration is set to be one for the books, as the race begins from the park’s shoreline for the first time in its 118-year history.

From noon to 4 p.m., the grounds of Fort Adams will be buzzing with excitement, featuring entertainment, food trucks, free parking, and a live broadcast streaming online from 2 p.m. Highlighting the event will be Cole Brauer, the first American woman to sail solo around the world without assistance. Brauer, a Rhode Island favorite, will join North Sails president Ken Read and local professional sailor Jesse Fielding in providing commentary and engaging with fans during a meet-and-greet session from 12 to 1 p.m.

“The Newport to Bermuda race course has always held a special place in my heart,” said Brauer. “I could not be more proud to help bring the race and the sport of sailing to a wider audience in Rhode Island—a place I consider a home away from home.”

Brauer’s deep connection to the race and the region adds a personal touch to the festivities. Just last June, she claimed victory in the Bermuda 1-2 race, a shorthanded competition along the same stretch of ocean. Following her win, she spent the summer at Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard, prepping for her monumental solo voyage around the globe. Brauer’s influence extends beyond her sailing prowess; she also coached a youth team in the last edition of the Newport Bermuda Race.

“There is no place quite like Rhode Island in the summer, and the Bermuda Race Organizing Committee is proud to contribute to our state’s cultural landscape with the biennial Newport Bermuda Race,” said Race Chair Andrew Kallfelz. “The Starting Line Live Show and Party will bring both new and seasoned sailing fans closer to the action, and add another exciting, family-friendly event to the Newport summer calendar.”

Attendees can look forward to a vibrant atmosphere, with performances by the local reggae band The Ravers from 12 to 1:30 p.m. and a Newport Artillery demonstration culminating in a cannon blast to signal the race’s start at 2 p.m. The family-friendly event will also offer a range of activities, including a photo op with the US Senior Golf Trophy, a putting green experience, sustainability and educational booths, race gear shopping, tours of the Oliver Hazard Perry tall ship, and explorations of the historic 200-year-old Fort Adams.

With alternative transportation options like the Providence Ferry, Jamestown Ferry, and Newport Harbor Shuttle available, getting to Fort Adams is convenient and scenic. Whether you’re a seasoned sailor or a curious newcomer, the 2024 Newport Bermuda Race Starting Line Party and Live Show promises a thrilling start to the summer, celebrating the enduring spirit of sailing and community in Rhode Island.




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