Thistle Midwinters East 2023
2023 Thistle Midwinters East will be hosted by Fort Walton Yacht Club in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. The event is a three day regatta (March 3-5). Come early for coaching (March 1) and a day of team racing (March 2)!
Registration and Notice of Race
Registration is open at https://yachtscoring.com/emenu.cfm?eID=15527, and you’ll find the NOR there as well.
- Wednesday, March 1: Coaching
- Thursday, March 2: Team Racing
- Friday, March 3: Thistle Midwinters East Championship Regatta Day 1
- Saturday, March 4: Thistle Midwinters East Championship Regatta Day 2
- Sunday, March 5: Thistle Midwinters East Championship Regatta Day 3
Where to Stay
Condos and Houses: There are plenty of condos through VRBO.com and Airbnb.com on Okaloosa Island. You can choose from a place right on the Gulf of Mexico or facing the Choctawhatchee Bay. That puts you about 10-15 minutes from the club. Want to be closer? Go with one of the mainland houses that’s less than a mile from the club.
The Island Resort (group rate): Tommy Glenn arranged a group rate at The Island Resort starting at $165 per night. They’re waiving the resort fee and parking fee, and you can stay up to three days before or after the event at the same price. Be sure to book by January 30.
- The Island Resort Thistle MWE group rate booking link (for Wednesday through Sunday bookings)
- To book days before or after MWE, call 850-337-9194 and ask for Venessa Blackmon, Group Housing Coordinator
- Cancellation policy is 48 hours prior to arrival without penalty
Other nearby hotels (no group rate available):
- Hampton Inn Fort Walton Beach
- Wyndham Garden Fort Walton Beach Destin
- Quality Inn Fort Walton Beach
- Four Points Sheraton Destin-Fort Walton Beach
- True by Hilton Fort Walton Beach
Tent Camping at FWYC: Need to save a few dollars? The yacht club welcomes tent camping on the point. You’ll have a beautiful view of the sailing area and access to the club’s grills, picnic tables, and 24/7 access to restrooms.
RV Camping: There are several options for RV camping with full hookups around $60-120 per night. Check out Forest Grove, Destin West RV, Camping on the Gulf, Navarre Beach Campground to start, but there are plenty of others.
You’re welcome to bring your boat to FWYC anytime after Wednesday, February 22. If you’d like to come earlier, call Jim Serpa, the dry storage manager, at 850-398-3724. There’s plenty of onsite parking. Have crew flying in? The club is 20 minutes from the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport and 75 minutes from the Pensacola International Airport.
There’s a brand new hoist, a ramp, and a small beach where a few people kept their boats for Nationals in 2015. Check out the club bar where you might want to try one of their famous Bushwackers. The club’s restaurant serves seafood, salads, sandwiches, pizza, and more. No need to worry about a guest card; FWYC is happy to take credit card or cash.
We are fortunate to have International Race Officer Mark Foster serving as our PRO. Mark was PRO for the 2022 Jacksonville Nationals, and we’re thrilled to race with him again. We’re planning on 3 Championship races per day for this silver chevron event.