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Columbia Yacht Club is proud to host Chicago Beer Can Racing Wednesday nights from May through September.

Our mission:

  • Introduce sailboat racing to those who are new to the sport in a positive, casual atmosphere

  • Encourage established and entry-level racing teams to rotate crew positions for skill development

  • Build team confidence for more competitive weekend races and regattas

  • Create an opportunity for sailors from area clubs to meet and mingle

The regatta is open to all keelboats 20 feet or longer which are equipped with a GPS and VHF radio capable of broadcasting and receiving on VHF channel 69 and meet US Coast Guard safety requirements for nearshore sailing at night. See Notice of Race for more complete information.



The Races
Races start on Wednesdays between 6:40 and 7:10 PM depending on your section and most races are completed by 8:30pm.The race course consists of a 2.5 miles diameter racing circle with the start and finish line in the center.

The length of the courses are between 3.5 and 5.5 miles. Boats are divided into sections and classes depending on which sails are being used and the handicap rating. The sections are Green (novice racers), JAM (jib and main) and spinnaker boats divided into sections according to their handicap.

After the Race
After each race, crew and friends safely meet on Columbia's Aft Deck to mingle, compare race notes, have a few drinks, and enjoy the fireworks. At the end of the season, series awards are given to the boats pla
cing in each class.

Race Committee

If racing is not for you but you would like to be involved with the series, consider joining the Beer Can Race Committee.Working on the Race Committee is an excellent opportunity to meet new people. Each week a different boat from the racing volunteers to be the Race Committee boat. As a member of the Race Committee, you will learn all about sailboat racing and all the in's and out's of running a race. SIGN UP FOR RACE COMMITTEE

No Boat? No Experience? No Problem!

Columbia Yacht Club and other clubs are always looking for new people to join the Race Committee!  This is a FREE way to get on the water; learn a new skill, marine education, make friends, enjoy the community, etc.  If you volunteer for Race Committee, what you put into it you will get out of it, and we will do our best to make sure you have every opportunity along the way. 


Event Schedule

2024 Calendar

Wednesday, May 8 at 6:30 PM

Orientation and Starting Gun Party


First Half

Wednesday, May 15 - Wednesday, July 3

Weekly Races & Post Race Parties at Columbia Yacht Club

First warning at 6:40 PM

Race to Mackinac Break

Wednesday, July 10 & Wednesday, July 17

No races. Keep an eye out for other fun activities. 

Second Half

Wednesday, July 24 - Wednesday, September 11

Weekly Races & Post Race Parties at Columbia Yacht Club

First warning at 6:40 PM

Wednesday, October 2 at 6:30 PM

Orientation and Starting Gun Party

Details coming soon


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Phone: 312 - 938 - 3625


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111 N. Lake Shore Drive

Chicago, IL 60601

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