The Downtown Sailing Series takes place Thursday nights from June to early August.

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Twelve years ago Bruce Hedrick, the late Tom Rutten and Dwight Jones had an idea. To get more people to use their sailboats, how about a fun “race” in Elliott Bay? Every year since on Thursday nights there’s a race from June to early August. Last Thursday’s race, called the Downtown Sailing Series (DSS), was the first of the season, which attracted more than 80 boats of all sizes.

There are only two rules in the race: Don’t bump into the other boats and have fun. The race starts in Elliott Bay near Elliot Bay Marina, then moves close to the downtown waterfront, before turning back to the finish line at the marina.

After the race, hot dogs and drinks are provided to the race participants. DSS also invites nonsailors to experience the evening sail. Go to and submit your name. Names will be drawn at random.

Related: Where to paddle, row, sail in the Seattle area