Acannon boomed at Fort Mackinac at 7:50 this morning in celebration of the first boat to cross the finish line at Mackinac Island in the prestigious Chicago to Mackinac Race. The boat was DogDayz, a Tartan 4100 in the Cruising 1 Division owned by New Baltimore’s Daniel Vandenbossche.

The 337 sailboats (21 divisions) racing in the 101st Chicago to Mackinac Race set sail from Chicago’s Navy Pier Saturday (July 18) at 11 am. Past winners have finished the 333-mile race in as few as 19 hours. But not this year. Light winds slowed the race to a snail’s crawl with DogDayz chalking up 64 hours and 40 minutes on the water.

Boats will be trickling up the Northwest coast all day, so keep an eye out for sails on the Lake Michigan highway. Great vantage points include Empire Bluffs and Pyramid Point in the Sleeping Bear Dune’s National Lakeshore, The Grand Traverse Lighthouse in Northport and the bluff in Harbor Springs.

This year 260 of the boats are tracked by GPS satellite technology increasing the spectator fun. Click here for updates on the race.

DogDayz will continue on to Port Huron to log a total of 490 nautical miles in the Super Mac race.

Quick Links to more Mackinac Island Fun!

  • MyNorth Mackinac Island Vacation Guide: Browse the pages of the complete Guide and click to hundreds of websites.
  • The Complete Mackinac Island Restaurant Guide
  • Mackinac Island music, festivals, art exhibits and events of all kinds!
  • Video: A Day on Mackinac Island
  • Plot your day on Mackinac Island using this Interactive Map: Choose an activity in "I’d like to find" and choose Mackinac Island for "in a town near." Then click away!
  • Rent a Cottage on Mackinac Island: There are hundreds of cottages for rent in Northern Michigan. Put Mackinac Island in the Search box and you’re one step closer to that vacation of your dreams.