It’s Ugotta Regatta weekend in Harbor Springs and our town is filled with boat enthusiasts and community members eager to watch the racing. Did you know that this annual tradition dates back to 1891 when the Little Traverse Boat Club (now the Little Traverse Yacht Club) was first established?
An article in the Daily Resorter from July 21, 1891 reads “IT’S A GO. THE AUGUST REGATTA AN ASSURED EVENT. Organization of a Permanent Association to be Known as the Little Traverse Boat Club.”
The article chronicles the history of other boat races on Little Traverse Bay, like the regatta held a year earlier, but mentions that none of these events gained much traction and none managed to build up enough enthusiasm to become an annual tradition. Finally, Commodore J. I. Hair of Chicago and Harbor Point managed to organize the Little Traverse Boat Club and began this annual regatta tradition.
You can read the entire newspaper article on the front page of the paper at this link: http://gwoodazure.blob.core.windows.net/newspaperfiles/tdr_18910721.pdf. The Greenwood Cemetery in Petoskey has done a truly outstanding job of digitizing these old newspapers and making them available for researchers. This fun find about the regatta is just one gem we have uncovered here at the Historical Society by using Greenwood’s newspaper research page.