The races are held as part of the celebration of Seattle's Opening Day of Boating Season and are followed by the Seattle Yacht Club's Opening Day Boat Parade. More than 800 rowers compete in this prestigious event, which culminates with the women's and men's Windermere Cup races.
Following the races, fans are invited to join the regatta champions for an awards ceremony and presentation of the Windermere Cup Trophy on the stage located near the video board on the NW side of the Montlake Cut, near the finish line.
Admission to the event is free. Viewing is available on the shores of the Montlake Cut, or by boats anchored to a log boom in Lake Washington.
The Montlake Bridge will be closed to traffic from 9:20 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Day of Event Public Parking:
E-12: $15.00 Public and Disability Parking
S-1: $15.00 Public Parking
E-1: $10.00 Public Parking
No public parking in TG/IMA, E8, E9, E6
Overnight Parking (E-18 only, Begins Friday):
Single Day: $10
Two Days: $20
To E1 via I-5
From I-5, take the NE 45th St. exit (#169). Turn right unto NE 45th St. Continue east on NE 45th St. until you reach Mary Gates Memorial Drive. Take a right onto Mary Gates Memorial Drive. Take the first right onto Clark Road and proceed west to reach the NE entrance of the E1 parking lot.
From I-5 northbound, take the NE 45th Street exit (#169). Turn right onto NE 45th Street. Continue east about 4/10 mile to 15th Avenue NE and turn right. Head south on 15th Avenue approximately 6 blocks to NE Pacific Street. Turn left onto NE Pacific Street, staying in the left-hand lane. Continue east to the first left turn option; the road makes a "Y" at that traffic-lighted intersection. Turn left onto NE Pacific Place. Continue a short distance to Montlake Boulevard and turn left and continue north on Montlake Blvd. When the road makes a "Y", bear right staying on Montlake Blvd. At Walla Walla Road turn right. Straight ahead you will see the multi-lane northern entrance to the E1 parking lot. When you enter the lot, Parking Services staff will collect the parking fee and direct you to a parking space
To E12 via I-5 Northbound
From I-5 northbound, take the NE 45th St. exit (#169). Turn right unto NE 45th St. Continue east about 4/10 mile to 15th Avenue NE and turn right. Head south on 15th Ave NE approximately 6 blocks to NE Pacific Street and turn left. Drive east to the first left turn option; the road makes a "Y" at that traffic-lighted intersection. Turn left onto NE Pacific Place. Move into right hand lane and cross Montlake Blvd. at the traffic light to enter in front of Husky Stadium. Veer right toward gatehouse.
The University of Washington manages the 3,000-foot log boom that lines the course for the Windermere Cup.
Tie up for the log boom begins on Thursday, May 5th at noon. Those that donate in advance will be assured a place on the boom if they arrive before 8 a.m. on Saturday, May 6th. Location along the boom is on a first-come, first-served basis within the reservation area. Staff will assure your boat is tied up in a safe location based on its size. Boats wanting to be next to specific boats MUST arrive together - no exceptions.
All dinghies need to avoid the warm-up area (just north of the log boom) and have zero wake when traveling on either side of the log boom. Pick-ups and drop-offs on the dock are prohibited 30 minutes prior to the start of the races.
If you have any questions about the log boom, please contact John Terry, Assistant Director of Events/Waterfront Manager, at 206-685-8442 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Because of the growing popularity of the log boom, the process to reserve a section on the boom will be different in 2017. In order to reserve a section on the boom, the following requirement will exist:
Section must have at least 180 feet reserved (full donation needed)
Section will be responsible to assist tie up boats and monitoring reserved section
Boats may still have a reserved spot without section affiliation.
History of the Windermere Cup
The University of Washington has participated in a regatta as part of the Seattle Yacht Club's opening day of boating season since 1970. In 1987, John Jacobi, founder of Windermere Real Estate, was inspired by a Seattle Times article written by Blaine Newnham, that called out a need to increase the level of competition for the event. Jacobi called a meeting with UW coaches Dick Erickson (men's crew), and Bob Ernst (women's crew), and asked the questions "who are the best rowers in the world?" and "what will it take to get them here for this event?"
Bob Ernst, who was also the national team coach at the time, suggested the Soviet Union, whose men and women's teams were the defending world champions. Jacobi and Windermere, agreed to sponsor the cost of bringing the teams to the US for occasion. Ernst worked his connections to make it happen, and the Windermere Cup, which has since become a Pacific Northwest tradition, was born.
Opening Day Parade
|2017 Opening Day Trio (L-R):|
Admiral Bruce Campbell, Admiralette Sandy Bell,
Vice Admiral Randy Holbrook
Opening Day, the official opening of Seattle's boating season sponsored by the Seattle Yacht Club, includes a celebration of many kinds of water activities. This year's festivities will include a morning of crew races, a sailboat race, and, of course, the grand Opening Day boat parade on Saturday, May 6, 2017.
I hope to see you on land or water opening day!
la chasse au bonheur