Bell’s Brewery Returns as Title Sponsor for 93rd Annual Bayview Mackinac Race

March 2017 News, Feature

Bell’s Brewery is proud to announce that it will return as the title sponsor of the 2017 Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race.

The 93rd annual race from Port Huron to Mackinac Island will set sail on July 22 this year, and this marks Bell’s seventh year as presenting sponsor of the longest consecutively run freshwater race in the world.

Bell's Brewery, Inc. began in 1985 with a quest for better beer and a 15 gallon soup kettle. Since then, they've grown into a regional craft brewery that employs more than 500 people over a 31 state area, in addition to Puerto Rico and Washington DC. The company brings dedication not only to their beer, but to sponsoring worthwhile causes and events.

“To be a part of an event with such incredible, rich tradition that also showcases the beauty of our Great Lakes is incredibly important to us,” said Larry Bell, president and founder of Bell’s Brewery.

More than 2,000 sailors are expected to participate this year on more than 225 boats. Larry Bell will again race the Cove Island course aboard the boat Details.

“It is wonderful to have Bell’s Beer back as our title sponsor for the 2017 race. Their support has helped bring stability to the race that has allowed us to grow and make the race better for the sailors and fans,” said Hans Brieden, 2017 Bayview Yacht Club Commodore. “In Bell’s we have found a great partner, one that understand the tradition of the race and that loves Michigan and our waters as much as we do.”

The annual race also helps support local economies with more than 75,000 sailing fans, families and partygoers attending a variety of events in Port Huron leading up to the Saturday start and festivities on Mackinac Island for the finish. The economic impact of the race on the these communities is estimated between 30 and 59 million US dollars, making it one of the premiere events hosted in the state of Michigan and one with major economic impact to a host of Michigan businesses, especially in tourism.

“It is only March but this year it is looking like it is going to be another strong year for the race. We already have more than 100 entries and it is exciting to see the number of first time boats entered,” said Tricia Smotherman, 2017 Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race Chair.

The Bell’s Beer Bayview Mackinac Race also helps support Set Sail for Autism, a program that allows young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder the opportunity to sail back from Mackinac Island to Port Huron aboard boats that compete.

Also returning this year is live tracking. Sailing fans, family and friends, locally and globally, will be able to track the progress of all boats racing at and on the Bayview Yacht Club’s website through Global Positioning System (GPS) tracking devices provided by Yellow Brick Tracking.

For more information, please visit


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