Containers mark the start of Para Worlds

There's a lot of activity at the Sheboygan waterfront right now, as containers of 2.4m and RS Venture boats arrive in advance of sailors competing in the 2018 Para World Championship. 

The championship races begin Tuesday, Sept. 18 in Lake Michigan off Sheboygan's coastline. On Monday, shipping containers holding the boats of disabled sailors from around the world began arriving and that will continue this week. 

Geoff Rudolph, executive director of the Sailing Education Association of Sheboygan, is overseeing the deliveries and preparation of the lakefront for the event.

“We’re at the beginning today of kicking off the event,” Rudolph said. “There’s been a huge amount of logistical stuff that’s taken place over the last couple of months to get to today.”

The first containers, shipped from the United Kingdom, arrived at the lakefront on flatbed trucks. A crane, donated by Trans-Link of Manitowoc, and a flatbed tow truck from Depot Auto Service and Towing were needed to unload the containers, along with manpower from SEAS staff and volunteers.

Rudolph and his committee worked with shipping agents on both coasts to manage the arrival of containers from “every corner of the world,” he said.

“We’re here to make sure the boats are taken care of and race-ready,” he said.

The Para World Championship, the highest level of competitive sailing available in the world for disabled sailors, will happen off Sheboygan’s lakefront next week. Racing starts Tuesday, Sept. 18, and three kinds of boats will race on three separate courses in Lake Michigan.

Containers will continue to be delivered this week, including from Singapore and Germany.