Fun in the summertime |

Fun in the summertime

Amanda Fehd
Photo provided by Steve Lannen / The Tahoe Windjammers' Summer Sailstice race will be today.

Today marks the longest day of the year, when Americans celebrate the first day of summer, many European countries celebrate Midsummer’s Day, and the global sailing community celebrates Summer Sailstice.

Sailors have celebrated the solstice since 2000 as the day they can stay out on the water the longest.

Steve Lannen with Tahoe’s Windjammers sailing club said their normal Wednesday race will be twice as long today, totaling around 12 miles.

“They are going to turn it into a regular race in the spirit of the Sailstice, and give out trophies,” Lannen said.

Sailboats around the world commemorate the summer solstice during the week of June 21.

“This international event was founded to connect the global sailing community in a fun, creative, multifaceted, multi-location sailing holiday,” says the Web site

Solstice celebrations go back many millennia. Originally a pagan holiday, several European countries celebrate June 24 as Midsummer’s Day. William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” was inspired by the frivolity of the solstice holiday, which is preceded by all-night feasting and revelry.

Forecasters at the National Weather Service could not explain why the solstice is connected with the middle of summer in Northern Europe, while most American calendars mark it as the beginning of the summer.

“Weather people will start to think along the lines of summer weather around the 1st of June, rather than waiting until the summer solstice,” said Ray Collins, forecaster in Reno. “It’s not an official thing, its just how we think.”

Tahoe will approach record numbers this week and into the weekend as a ridge of high pressure moves over the area. Highs around 90 degrees predicted for this weekend. Cooler weather will move in around next Wednesday.

Longest day of the year:

The sun rose today at 5:32 a.m. and will set at 8:30 p.m.

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