Although there is some entertainment for Cowes Week starting on Friday (9th August) the week really starts on Saturday when not only do the first yacht races start but Cowes is filled with entertainment for all.
The Parade will see its usual ‘Village’ with eateries, bars, stalls and performances on stage including the Westerhall Rum Bar, Westerhall being the official rum of Cowes Week. Nearby, Chatham, another sponsor of the regatta, will host their shoe cabin.
Hosted by the Official Charity, the 1851 Trust’s stand on Cowes Parade will be open every day for the chance to enter a treasure hunt. This is a perfect fun family activity with prizes to be won. At certain times it is hoped that members of Girlguiding IW will be on hand to help younger children hunt for treasure.
Of special note… between 14:30 and 16:30 on Saturday 10th August Tommy Burnhams, a local solo guitarist, will be playing on the stage of Parade Village.
Between 09:30 – 18:00 daily at Cowes Yacht Haven, Land Rover will host their Sailing Experience. The car manufacturer invites you and your family to an unmissable Land Rover Sailing Experience where children aged 8 to 18 will get the chance to sail the same water as the professionals and pick up some sailing tips. Meanwhile there is a selection of soloists and bands on stage which will be housed near the bar and Electro Love Nightclub scheduled to be open until 02:00.
Also at Cowes Yacht Haven, Sunsail will be organising their usual charter yachts and host the popular Financial Challenge as well as their daily prizegiving- a regatta within a regatta.
Shepards Marina will host a selection of entertainment including the Sundowner Session in association with Westerhall Rum and the popular Sugar Store Night Club.
Through Cowes High Street from 11:00 – 18:00 there will be music, entertainers and face-painting all based at various locations throughout the area.
At Northwood House and the surrounding park there will be Afternoon Teas served on the Eastern Lawn, together with ice creams, between 11:30 – 17:00. Throughout the afternoon local charities including Girlguiding IW and UKSA will host activities in the park on some days. Between 12:00 – 00:30 the next morning the Lawn Lounge and popular Gin Festival, with over 100 Gins this year, will be open and in addition, between 22:30 – 01:30, Club Balearia will open its doors on Saturday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
For Family Day (11th August), in addition to the regular activities in The Parade Village there will be Children’s face-painting and a puppet show. Join Emily Eccott from midday until 16:00 offering FREE Cowes Week face and body painting plus see the mischievous characters Bear and Scratch.
Shepards Marina, between 12:00 – 15:00, will see children’s crafts activities available in the Sugar Store and outdoor games in the yard whilst between 12:00 – 17:00 Tree Climbing Adventure with Goodleaf will be available at Northwood Park. Tree climbing will also take place on Friday of Cowes Week.
Monday 12th August sees Charity Day with the 1851 Trust being the official charity of Cowes Week this year.
Tuesday is Ladies Day, sponsored this year by Slingsby. Since 2006, the Tuesday of Cowes Week has had a unique take on a Ladies Day with the day celebrating the contribution and achievement of women in sailing and recognising some of the major successes of women in the sport. Between 12:00 – 23:00 Cowes Parade will be the place for Ladies Day on-the-spot prizes. Ladies wearing nautical stripes will be in for a chance to win prizes.
At Northwood Park between 11:00 – 16:00 there will be Isle of Wight MG Car Club Car Display (weather permitting) followed by the Slingsby Ladies Day Reception (by invitation only).
Youth Day at Cowes Week presented by Antigua Sailing Week takes place on the Wednesday of Cowes Week. At Shepards Marina from 19:00 – 22:30 there is the Antigua Sailing Week Reggae Party – a Caribbean party to welcome all Under 25, Youth sailors at Cowes Week where they can join in the party spirit with tunes from DJ Dave VJ and giveaways from ASW
For car enthusiasts, Northwood House grounds are the venue, between 11:00 – 16:00, for the Vectis Historic Vehicle Club Car Display (weather permitting).
Thursday, and Northwood House once again, is the host at 12:30 for the Northwood House Charitable Trust Ladies Lunch. (For tickets call 01983 293 642.) This event supports the trust which recently has undertaken much to preserve Northwood House.
Highlights for Friday include the RAF Typhoon Display at 19:30. This will be followed by, at the usual time of 21:30, the Red Funnel Cowes Week Fireworks Display. This display takes place off The Parade and lasts around 15 minutes. Best viewing onshore is from The Parade, the Esplanade, the Green and East Cowes.
However, also on Friday evening between 19:30 – 20:30 the official prizegiving will take place with the Cowes Week Overall Prize Giving to be staged at Shepards Marina – everyone welcome.
Many people consider Friday the end of Cowes Week, but racing continues on Saturday as does The Parade Village with entertainment and most of the other activities and events around the town and other venues.
For those interested in art there is the Cowes Art Trail. Art4Sail is happening in St. Thomas Church Hall between 09:00-18:00 each day of Cowes Week. The Cowes Art Group is showing its work at Holy Trinity Church Monday to Thursday from 10:00-16:00 with refreshments available and a second exhibition from a Cowes Art Group will be in St. Mary’s Church in Northwood Park 10:00-16:00 daily and Saturday 17th 10:00-14:00 – refreshments available.