The Mills Experience
The Mills Trophy Race is held each year on the second weekend following Memorial Day. The race is open to the following classes: PHRF, JAM, Double-Handed, Multi-Hull and Classics. The three courses offered, depending on class and boat rating, all begin near the Toledo Harbor Light and end at a finish line off of South Bass Island (Put-in-Bay).
In accordance with the deed of gift for the Mills Trophy that the race be a test of navigational skill, starts begin in the late afternoon and sailing continues through the evening and night.
Upon finishing, the boats proceed to the reserved public docks in downtown Put-in-Bay. Regardless of the time of arrival, the gathering at the docks is festive occasion for all with both the winners and the not so fortunate trading tales of their night on the lake.
Although the race is the centerpiece, Mills Week includes a number of other events. On the Friday evening preceding the race, the Mills Masters are invited to a special picnic in their honor. On Wednesday, the winners of the previous year's race are feted at a banquet and awards presentation. Thursday evening is the famous Mills Party held on the lawn of the Toledo Yacht Club. This party is open to the public and offers an opportunity to see many of the boats which will race the next evening. Boats arriving on Thursday are welcomed with a cannon salute. A post-race party, held on Saturday afternoon at the Put-in-Bay Yacht Club, includes music, refreshments and the posting of the race results. Before heading home on Sunday, flags are presented to the winning skippers.