CASRA stands for “Chicago Area Sail Racing Association.” CASRA is an organization comprised of a group of five Chicago-area yacht clubs – Burnham Park Yacht Club, Chicago Yacht Club, Chicago Corinthian Yacht Club, Columbia Yacht Club, and Jackson Park Yacht Club. Combined, CASRA member clubs have approximately 3,000 members, including most of the active racing sailors in the Chicago area, and run many of the sailboat races in the Chicago area. The purpose of CASRA is to respond to the needs and desires of racers, boat owners and yacht clubs. CASRA coordinates sail racing activities of its member clubs, and promotes growth of sailboat racing in the Chicagoland area.
CASRA is different from other sailing organizations in a few distinct ways. First, CASRA is focused exclusively on the Chicagoland area. This is a fantastic sailing city and a skyline view from the water that is second to none. Chicago and the waterfront is a perfect canvas upon which to paint a greater more vibrant sail racing program. Second, CASRA works to involve people in boating in many different ways, whether it be offshore racing, inshore racing, youth racing, and even cruising. Third, CASRA is primarily a volunteer organization, and does not require or request membership dues from boat owners or crew members.
Two words that might describe CASRA well are “collaboration” and “innovation.” CASRA works to engage boat owners, clubs, harbor management, racing fleets, and sailing organizations of all types, to determine needs and desires, and to then respond with new offerings via the five clubs comprising CASRA. For example, since CASRA was founded in 2016, CASRA member clubs have worked together to offer a new Casual Race Series (beginning in 2017), a Charity Challenge (beginning in 2018), and Chicago Race Week (beginning in 2019). These innovations are designed to bring new people into sailboat racing, and to make the sport more fun and exciting for those already participating. Each year, CASRA conducts an annual survey of all participants, hosts a town hall meeting and end of season celebration (where results are shared with everyone), and then works to respond to survey results through its plan for the coming year.
Please click here to review the 2019 CASRA schedule, which represents the most significant changes in Chicago sail racing in more than a generation. We look forward to seeing you on the water often in 2019.