Are you bored with the idea of spending Thanksgiving weekend sitting around your living room eating turkey sandwiches and watching football on television?
Do you wish you and your crew had one more lighthearted event to do with your boat before you put it to bed for the winter?
Are you an experienced racer with family and friends you'd like to introduce to racing without the stress of full-bore competition?
Or are you a racing newcomer itching to try sailboat racing in a low-pressure, informal environment?
If the answers to any or all of those questions are yes, and your sense of humor is alive and well, the Eastport Yacht Club has the event for you.
It's the club's annual Leftover Bowl Regatta, set for Saturday, which can be an entertaining part of any sailor's Turkey Day weekend.
The regatta is named not only for the spare turkey parts that fill post-Thanksgiving refrigerators, but also for the trophies themselves. They're mostly the various bits and pieces left over from a season's regular competition, for which homes could not be found.
It's a clever way for the club to clean out its attic of unclaimed hardware while sponsoring a popular and amusing afternoon of fun and games.
Check-in and registration for the event will take place from 10:30 a.m. to noon on race day at EYC's new clubhouse at 317 First St. in Eastport, next door to Severn Sailing Association, and will be followed by the 1 p.m. warning gun for the PHRF-Nonspinnaker race on the Severn River.
The race is open to all comers, regardless of club affiliation or PHRF membership, and those without valid PHRF ratings for their boats will be assigned them.
Regular frostbite-type rules will apply -- all spelled out in the Special Sailing Instructions, available at check-in, and protests are definitely discouraged. Entry fee is $5.
After racing, EYC invites all participants back for an awards party at the clubhouse, where there will be plenty of warmth, lots of laughs, and prizes for just about everyone, as well as free food and limited beverages, and a cash bar.
For further information, call Race Committee Chairman Sandy Grosvenor at (410) 263-8568, or show up at EYC Saturday morning.
Raven Memorial donations
EYC's Leftover Bowl makes many of us think of our friend, Robert Brainerd Raven, who was well-known and popular as a regular Chesapeake Bay sailor, EYC's Race Committee chairman and an active and hard-working member of the Chesapeake Bay Yacht Racing Association.
Raven died last April, and his natural warmth, enthusiastic dedication, keen intelligence and quick wit are badly missed by his family and many friends and admirers.
Still, the irrepressible and obvious fun he always had in managing Leftover Bowl -- one of his favorite events despite (or maybe even because of) its inherent silliness -- brings fond and happy memories of him clearly to mind in this season.
A native of New England, he learned to sail on Long Island Sound as a youth, and among his many achievements before coming to Annapolis was the establishment of a sailing school for junior sailors.
Those of us who knew him often saw the special pride he took in the aspirations and accomplishments of youngsters, especially his own two children, and his unflagging commitment to assisting young people in their efforts to achieve excellence.
Raven's family has asked that he be remembered by his friends and fellow sailors through donations to CBYRA's Fund for Chesapeake Sailors, and it would be proud to have CBYRA DTC racers receive assistance in his name.
As many bay sailors already know, the Fund for Chesapeake Sailors is used solely to assist CBYRA sailors in their efforts in US SAILING championships, international competition and Olympic campaigns.
The fund is made up entirely of donations -- fully tax deductible -- and is an important source of assistance for area sailors in their quests for higher accomplishment.
In addition to donations made in memory of specific individuals such as Raven, the fund also welcomes unassigned contributions.
Contributions also can be earmarked for specific sailors taking part in national, international or Olympic competition.
For more information on the Fund for Chesapeake Sailors, contact CBYRA, 410-269-1194, or send donations in any amount to the Fund, c/o CBYRA, 612 Third St., Suite 201, Annapolis, Md. 21403.
It's a great way to remember a wonderful old friend, or help a new one excel.