Columbus Day celebrates the arrival of Christopher Columbus to the Americas on October 12, 1492 and is observed in the United States on the second Monday of October.
Columbus Day is a bank holiday and this year will be on October 10, 2016.
Columbus Day Weekend is a huge boating event in Miami.
Originally, the center of the celebrations were the Columbus Day Regatta races commemorating the voyages of discovery.
Through the years, the event has given way to a massive Mardi Grass-like boating party that has drifted towards the banks of Elliot Key for a weekend jammed with boaters on (and in) the water, loud music, heavy drinking and clothing optional everything-goes crowd. The Elliott Key revelry is NOT part of the Regatta activities. So be sure you understand these are two separate events, even though they are both taking place in the waters of Biscayne Bay.
This is the oldest event taking place in the waters of Biscayne Bay. There is even some colorful history behind it that ties back to the 17th Duke of Veraguas, a direct descendant of Cristobal Colon, who attended the event in 1960 and granted permission for the use of the Columbus Coat of Arms for the Regatta's emblem.
The races take place over Saturday and Sunday, it is sailing at its best. Watch this fantastic drone footage...
The course is between the Quickflash marker just south of the Rickenbacker Causeway in Key Biscayne and Black Ledge in the south, just north of the Biscayne National Park boundary.
On Saturday, the vessels will race southwards from Quickflash to Black Ledge, and on Sunday on the opposite direction. The points will be marked with orange flags and a red Bacardi (the event's sponsor) mark.
Here's a course chart indicating the start and finish points. This is a reference chart and not for navigation purposes.
When?: Saturday and Sunday October 8 - 9, 2016.
Saturday races will start at 9:55 a.m. Starting point near Quickflash marker south of Rickenbacker Causeway in Key Biscayne.
Sunday races start at 10:55 a.m. Starting point is the previous day finish line near Black Ledge ending off Dinner Key.
Where?: On the water all along race course. Where to watch the races? The start and finish points are good places
What?: Open bar, Free beer, Italian buffet, live band, prize give away and more
When?: Saturday, October 8, 2016. Doors open at 5:00 pm
Where?: Shake A Leg Miami, 2620 South Bayshore Drive
How Much?: Tickets are $20.00 Party is open to the public. All proceeds benefit Shake A Leg Miami and are tax deductible
More info and tickets: www.columbusdayregatta.net
The heavy partying area (not part of the Regatta activities) is along Elliot Key. Elliot Key although part of Biscayne National Park, is not associated with these activities. The park has dubbed this the "most dangerous weekend of the year" and needless to say, this is not a family event.
In fact, there are special regulations issued for the weekend. If you are heading out please act responsibly and comply with them as there will be zero tolerance for violations:
You can follow the Columbus Day Weekend activities being planned on the community Facebook page. And remember, stay safe!
When? Saturday, October 8, 2016 - 8:00 pm
Where? Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens
Columbus Day is a public holiday. Federal government offices are closed except for National parks.
You can expect the following to
be open and closed on Monday:
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