Following the departure of ARC+ fleet, the ARC schedule continues today in Las Palmas, with a busy day of check ins and plenty of crews visiting the ARC Office and Shop in the marina. The ARC Sundowners take place most nights at Federacion de Vela from 18:30 and are always an enjoyable evening as many crews come together to share their preparations experience over a drink or two.
For crews already in Las Palmas, information about the exciting two week programme is available in the Shop, via daily emails and morning broadcasts and in the pack of information provided at check-in.
The ARC is known to be a very social rally, and there are parties and events for crews almost every night providing a wonderful opportunity for them to meet one another. The programme began on Friday with the official ARC+ Farewell & ARC Welcome party, a spectacular night hosted by the Las Palmas City Council.
ARC Sundowners will be taking place most evenings in the Federacion de Vela (next to the ARC Offices) and are an opportunity to get off the boat, to mix and mingle and to get the evening started. Supporters of this year's sundowners include: Ahembo Canaria, MailaSail, Admiral Marine Insurance, Yachting World, Peters & May, Raymarine and Spinnakers, St. Lucia. There are Crew Suppers for all boats, and special suppers for the family boats and those sailing with just two people. The Owners Dinner, held at the Real Club Nautico, is also a popular evening in a more formal setting.
Other highlights of the social programme include the Rolnautic Welcome Fiesta, sponsored by the popular local chandlery which will a busy place for the next couple of weeks! Another fun night will be the annual costume party on Wednesday 15 November - where crews and the ARC yellow shirts will be dressing up in their best 'Under the Sea' themed outfits!
During the day, there are a number of organised activities for participant to join. On Friday, 10 November participants are invited plant trees in the ARC Forest, supporting a local initiative that has seen over 1600 trees planted to date by crews. It's particularly relevant this year as Gran Canaria has been affected by significant forest fires over the summer. There's also the opportunity to take a bus tour of exploring the mountains and views of Gran Canaria or a guided walk around the old city of Las Palmas. The Tourist Information office located next to the ARC Terrace helps crews discover the many local highlights.
The extensive ARC seminar programme begins on Thursday 9th November and covers topics from provisioning to rigging, electronics to down wind sailing. Held at the Real Club Nautico during the first week, and Hotel Santa Catalina in week two, these seminars provide plenty of practical information for the crossing and top tips from the experienced ARC team with thousands of ocean miles of knowledge to share.
On the morning of Thursday 16th safety demonstrations take place, where the local lifeboat and rescue helicopter demonstrate high line transfers, our safety team demonstrate how to fire flares, and we run a 'get wet' session with a liferaft in the swimming pool.
All children aged between 6 and 16 years are welcome to join a week-long kid's club in week two. This gives parents a chance to get the boat ready in peace and quiet, and the youngsters something interesting to do outside the marina. The kid's club is run by professionals, and takes the children dinghy sailing, on excursions around the island, visits to museums and to fun parks.
We'll be posting pictures of ARC activities as well as the latest news from Las Palmas on the ARC Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/arcrally