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Key West Classic Regatta begins Monday, Jan. 27, with races, parade and parties

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Classic boat enthusiasts can participate in races of tall ships, schooners and other venerable vessels, and enjoy a boat parade and boat tours during the Key West Classic Regatta set for Monday, Jan. 27, through Sunday, Feb. 2.

Historic, replica and modern wooden vessels are to take part in the event. Boats are scheduled to come from Chesapeake Bay, Florida's west coast and the Florida Keys to compete in daily racing challenges and associated events.

Buoy races of Florida Keys tall ships and excursion schooners are scheduled from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday, Jan. 27-30, on an Atlantic Ocean course off Key West's Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park.

Sailing aficionados can experience the action by booking seats on participating vessels for $75 per person. The price includes a bag lunch, regatta T-shirt and admission to evening awards receptions.

Following each day's racing, awards events featuring appetizers and camaraderie are scheduled beginning at 7 p.m. at the Schooner Wharf Bar, 202 William St. in Key West's Historic Seaport.

Friday's challenges are to star the visiting vessels, with races set for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and a 7 p.m. party on the upper deck at Dante's Key West, 951 Caroline St. in the seaport. The party's attractions are to include rum tastings, live music and artist demonstrations.

A parade of vessels under sail is scheduled at 10 a.m. Saturday. Spectators can watch tall ships, schooners, yachts and other participating boats sail from Fort Zachary Taylor along the shoreline past Mallory Square to the Historic Seaport at Key West Bight.

Plans call for them to dock at the foot of Margaret Street, where the public can come aboard for tours. Tour prices are $5 per person.

A final awards party is to take place Saturday at Dante's beginning at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 per person and can be purchased until Thursday, Jan. 30.

Event information: www.keywestclassicregatta.com or 305-509-1771
Key West visitor information: www.fla-keys.com/keywest or 1-800-LAST-KEY
Social: facebook.com/floridakeysandkeywest · twitter.com/thefloridakeys · youtube.com/FloridaKeysTV

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