Family Island Regatta

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The Bahamas is a series of island communities each distinct yet inextricably bound by common history. Each year they fiercely compete for community pride and recognition as champion seafarers in boats designed by Bahamians.
A flotilla of cargo vessels deliver racing skiffs of all sizes.  The town triples in size with racing teams and their supporters from far and wide.
The racing boats are craned off the cargo boats and no time is wasted getting them out onto the course for practice.
The main event is the "A-class" boats but you wouldn't know it from the crowds. They yell and hoot for the kid's dinghy races with just as much vigour and passion.
A-class action.
A-class action.
A-class action.
A-class action.
A-class action.
Note the guys hanging out on the leeboards. Often the boards snap and things get real interesting with boats, bodies and mayhem piled together.
A-class race preparation.
Races are started from an anchored boat position.
With the starting gun, anchors are aweigh.
Sails are hoisted at the same time. If the timing is not perfect, things get real interesting at the start line.
Then it's a mad dash for the best tack and line.
With so much sail aloft, the crew must scurry out onto the leeboards and position themselves to counterbalance the force of the wind.
This team got it just right and has a good lead on the pack.
Competition is hot and heavy for the lead.
Sometimes things break and you get to wait for the next race.
More action.
More action.
More action.
Contrast in size and style.
The crowds are quite large but very well behaved.  It's quite safe to attend any function day or night.
George Town goes all out with marching bands and a carnival atmosphere.  Here a mother grills her daughter as to where she's been and what's she eating.
Monkey bars and slides are a universal favourite!
So too, the manual Ferris wheel or round about.
People mill about the bandstand having a great time chatting and keeping one eye on the exuberant youth.
Even the local Constabulary get into the spirit and go with the flow.
The George Town Police Band enters the parade park.
The band had three parts; the musicians, a gymnastic dance squad and a junior cadet drill squad performed. The music is really quite good with a bit of Sousa done in a Caribbean style.
Note the little boy marching with his father. Despite his tender years, the lad had all the right stuff!
The drill squad doing their thing!
The ladies making moves that would throw my back out!