NEWPORT, RI (April 21, 2023) – Sail Newport announces that BankNewport will be the Presenting Partner of the Exploration Zone at The Ocean Race Newport stopover, May 13-21. The interactive exhibit for all ages will feature sailing, ocean health, coastal sustainability, marine science, technology, and art.
“We are thrilled to be the presenting partner of the Exploration Zone at the Ocean Race Newport as it perfectly complements our commitment to supporting organizations that focus on environmental protection and STEM education,” said Jack Murphy, President & CEO, BankNewport. “Not only is it an honor to be part of a race of this magnitude, but even more so to have the opportunity to provide an educational experience to visitors of all ages. Learning about protecting our oceans is vital, especially for us here in the Ocean State.”
The partnership announced today joins BankNewport with The Ocean Race, a global 32,000 nautical mile sailboat race over six months that stops in eight cities worldwide. The Newport event is the only North American stop on the global marathon.
Considered the most formidable challenge in team sports, the five crew of men and women face an epic test of sailing skill, tactical decisions, boat handling, navigation, and extreme mental and physical challenges, all on high-performance foiling race boats. The grueling conditions range from searing heat in the doldrums to roaring gale-force winds across the ferocious Southern Ocean.
The Exploration Zone-presented by BankNewport, is uniquely created to inspire and inform on the sport of sailing and the many facets of sustaining a clean ocean. The exhibition will showcase more than two dozen nonprofit and mission-driven organizations to educate, entertain, and engage visitors of all ages.
Over 5,000 students from R.I., MA, CT, and New York are scheduled for school field trips to The Ocean Race Newport Ocean Live Park and the Exploration Zone-presented by BankNewport. Guided tours of Ocean Live Park will take students on an adventure as they wind through the educational exhibits and stamp a learning and adventure passport.
Organizers hope that the Exploration Zone-Presented by BankNewport, will inspire all ages to take action to protect the ocean and discover sailing on Narragansett Bay.
“BankNewport has been such an incredible support to the community for many decades, and to have them on board for this international sailing and educational event demonstrates their commitment to public sailing and education,” says Brad Read, Sail Newport executive director.
The Ocean Race started January 15, in Alicante, Spain, and the boats are preparing to leave Itajai, Brazil, on Sunday, April 23, to head north to the United States East Coast, with the finish line just outside of Newport Harbor. The boats should arrive in Newport between May 10 and 12 and dock at Sail Newport in Fort Adams State Park adjacent to the Ocean Live Park race village.
Along with the Exploration Zone-presented by BankNewport, Ocean Live Park will feature a nine-day celebration with family activities, exhibits, outdoor games, live music, special events, food, and entertainment. Admission is free to the public every day. Parking fees apply.
Visitors to the Ocean Live Park will also see the race boats, team bases and sailboat racing up close, visit the One Blue Voice Immersive Experience, presented by 11th Hour Racing, and have an opportunity to Try Sailing! with Sail Newport.
Over the past two editions, an average of 100,000 people visited the event in 2015 and 2018. The event next month will likely draw attendees from many U.S. states, Canada and Europe.
On May 21, the Ocean Race fleet will depart from Newport for the trans-Atlantic leg to Aarhus, Denmark. From there, the fleet will race to The Hague, Netherlands, and the final finish in Genoa, Italy, in late June.
“With the support of BankNewport, we can educate and inspire all ages to become ocean stewards and learn about science, technology, marine life, ocean health, and art through The Ocean Race Newport,” Read adds.