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June 2016


LVACWS Chicago Event Information

What is the America’s Cup?

The America’s Cup is the premier event in the sport of sailing and the oldest sports trophy in the world. The first event was organized by the Royal Yacht Squadron in 1851 as a single race around the Isle of Wight, open to yachts of all nations. The prize was a Cup that was valued at one hundred pounds sterling. The black schooner “America” won the contest, outclassing the rest of the field. To honor that victory, the trophy was renamed the “America’s Cup” and became a challenge trophy, open to sailing clubs of all nations. For 164 years, the America’s Cup has become one of sport’s most revered trophies with challenges characterized famously by some of the most thrilling dramas – and bitter rivalries – in sporting history. 

What is the America’s Cup World Series event all about and what can we expect if we go to watch?

The America’s Cup World Series is a collection of regattas leading up to the 35th America’s Cup (which will be hosted by Bermuda in 2017) featuring the best sailors in the world battling it out on AC45F catamarans that “fly” on foils at astonishing speeds of up to 40 MPH. Every race will count with vital points being secured ahead of the America’s Cup Qualifiers in Bermuda come 2017. The Chicago event takes place June 10-12, 2016. The racing takes place almost within touching distance from the spectators at Navy Pier, so the event cannot fail to be spectacular, in addition to the big screens, family entertainment and a Alvalle Race Village all taking place at the east end of historic Navy Pier.

Do I need a ticket to access Navy Pier?

The west end of Navy Pier is not within the Alvalle Race Village area and can be accessed by general public with no restrictions. Please refer to event map for details on where the ticketed Alvalle Race Village begins on Navy Pier, located in downtown Chicago.

What tickets are available?

  • Grandstand Weekend (All ages 3 and older)
  • General Admission Weekend (Adult and Youth available)
  • General Admission Saturday Single Day (Adult and Youth available)
  • General Admission Sunday Single Day (Adult and Youth available) 
  • On-Water Cruises 
  • Boaters Pass

Please visit the ticket site of here for ticket information and pricing.

What is the Alvalle Race Village?

The “Alvalle Race Village” for the America’s Cup World Series Chicago will be located at the east end of Navy Pier. The finish line for all wind direction race course options will be just feet from the end of Navy Pier, and the starting line + turning marks will be focused around the Alvalle Race Village when conditions allow. It includes family friendly entertainment and interactive content focused on the sport of sailing. In the Alvalle Race Village, fans will be able to learn about the history, the technology, the teams and the sailors of the America’s Cup.

Where is the Alvalle Race Village located at Navy Pier?

For full location details please click here

Can I purchase tickets on-site to enter the Alvalle Race Village?

Access on the day will depend on the capacity each day and pre-sales. To avoid disappointment we advise that you book in advance. If there is still capacity on event day, registration and ticket booking will be available on-site.

What time does the Alvalle Race Village open and close?

Please refer to the official event day schedule here. We will continue to update this site as more information becomes available.

How do I gain entry to the Alvalle Race Village?

When you buy a ticket to the Alvalle Race Village through our ticket vendor, you will receive an email confirmation, as well as a link to print out your event tickets. Smartphone users will have the ability to have their mobile ticket scanned at the entrance to the Alvalle Race Village. Once scanned, you will receive a wrist band to gain access to the village, which must be worn on each day that you attend the event.

What is a “Grandstand Seat”?

The premier grandstand is located on the edge of Navy Pier in the Alvalle Race Village and offers fantastic views of the race course as the teams battle it out at speeds reaching 40 MPH. The Premier Grandstand Seat must be purchased ahead of time and is not included with a standard “Alvalle Race Village” ticket. Included in the Grandstand Ticket is access to the Alvalle Race Village, elevated seating directly at the Start/Finish line and access to the Sailors Lounge, where you can take shelter and enjoy upgraded (paid) concessions. General Admission is mostly standing room on Navy Pier, so the Grandstand Seat ticket ensures a seat with an amazing view!

What is the re-entry policy for the day sailing and evening concerts?

Re-entry to the event will be permitted with your wristband, but please note you will still be required to queue and be searched when re-entering the site.

What is the ticket refund policy in case of inclement weather?

Weekend Passes: No refund will be provided if racing takes place on 1 of the 2 days. 

Single Day Passes: If no racing takes place on Saturday, your ticket will allow you to access the event on Sunday if space allows. If no racing on Sunday, a make-up ticket to a Navy Pier attraction will be provided via email.

Will there be disability access?

Yes – For more information on Navy Pier’s accessibility, please visit

Are kids free?

Children under the age of two are free to enter the Alvalle Race Village with a paying adult.

Can I bring my own food and drink?

  • No outside food is allowed within the Event Village
  • No alcohol or glass can be brought into the event. 
  • Factory sealed water containers and empty water bottles may be brought onto the site.
  • Any other liquids will not be permitted.

What time does the racing start?

The current racing window is scheduled from 1:30 .pm. – 3:00 p.m. CDT on both Saturday and Sunday; however, exact start times are weather dependent. Timing will be refined and up-to-date schedules will be posted on our website and social media. Attendees are advised to arrive early to ensure the best viewing position on the shoreline and to enjoy the festivities in the Alvalle Race Village.

How close will the boats get to the shoreline?

The boats will be approximately 2 boat lengths away from the shoreline at their closest approach and no more than eight-tenths of a mile away at their furthest.

What other entertainment is going on that day?

Detailed schedules of all entertainment featured throughout the day will be posted on our website and social media in the near future.

Where can I stay?

Stay tuned for additional information on partner hotels in Chicago and in close proximity to Navy Pier.

Can I see the racing from the Alvalle Race Village?

Yes – The racing will be visible from the Alvalle Race Village as it borders the shoreline and is in close proximity to the racing. Racing will also be shown on large screens located in the Alvalle Race Village.

Can I bring folding chairs and blankets to the Alvalle Race Village?

No – Folding chairs, camping chairs, or blankets will not be allowed into the Alvalle Race Village.

Where can I park?

Limited Parking is available at Navy Pier. Additional information on Navy Pier garages and alternate locations can be found here:

What is the best way for me to get to the event?

The best way to get to the event is by Chicago public transit. For more information, please visit

Bus Transportation and drop off information

For information on bus staging and parking at Navy Pier, please review the LVACWS Chicago Drop-Off Plan


Yes. For information on viewing the LVACWS Chicago on NBC and NBCSN please visit

LVACWS On-Water Event Information

How can I get the best view of the event from the water?

To gain access to the best on-water location to view the event, boaters are encouraged to purchase a Boaters Pass available on our website here

Are there preferred charter partners for the event?

Stay tuned for more information on preferred charter partners.

Will there be different flags on the water?

Yes, there will be flags to designate different areas. Stay tuned for more information that will be posted on our website.

Can I buy hospitality for the on-water race viewing?

Yes – Official hospitality packages will be available via ACWS preferred suppliers. For more information please visit our ticket website here

Will there be a speed limit?

A speed limit and minimal wash requirement is enforceable in accordance with the City of Chicago officials.

LVACWS Volunteer Information


We have very limited remaining volunteer roles available. If you’d like to check availability, or sign up to be on the Standby/Waitlist as roles become available, please click here and sign up as a General Volunteer.

What kinds of things will volunteers do?

Volunteers may be doing anything from greeting fans at Navy Pier, to ushering families into the grandstands. Opportunities include:

  • Key Volunteers
  • Fan Zone Ambassadors
  • Grandstand Ushers
  • Sponsor Activation Assistant
  • Transportation Assistant
  • VIP Hospitality (two locations)
  • Volunteer Registration/Hospitality
  • Guest Services Ambassadors
  • Greeter
  • Info Booth – Navy Pier, Waterfront and various Hotel locations
  • Ticketing/Wristbands
  • Wayfinder
  • Media/Ceremonies Team
  • Ceremonies Assistant
  • Media Center
  • TV Compound
  • On-Water Team

How do I choose my shifts?

All accepted applicants will gain access to be able to sign up for specific shifts in mid-March.

What is a Key Volunteer?

Key Volunteers are individuals that fill leadership and management roles during the event; they have previous experience with volunteering or managing groups of people. They will help manage each group of volunteers and be the link to a staff member should a challenge come up. Volunteers in this role will be asked to fulfill longer shifts, and have a deeper knowledge of the event. Key Volunteers will have longer shifts, and an additional orientation session via phone. To become a Key Volunteer, applicants should indicate their interest on the application form. Should you be qualified to be a Key Volunteer, a representative will contact an applicant for a short phone interview.

What are the perks of volunteering?

  • All volunteers will receive a t-shirt and hat upon arrival at their shift.
  • Volunteers will also get one meal per shift, and access to snacks/water throughout their shift.
  • All volunteers will be able to purchase discounted General Admission Tickets through a special link that will be shared.
  • Volunteers must purchase a ticket should they wish to stay after/before their scheduled shift.
  • Volunteers will be invited to a Volunteer Appreciation Event at the close of the event on Sunday, June 12thwhere they will be able to take a picture with America’s Cup and mingle with all other volunteers.

If I’m volunteering, do I still need to buy tickets?

All volunteers will be able to purchase General Admission Tickets through a special link that will be shared. Volunteers must purchase a ticket should they wish to stay after/before their scheduled shift.

How long are volunteer shifts?

Volunteer shifts are between 4-6 hours.

What time are the shifts?

In most cases, shifts are

  • Friday- 10:15-2:15, 1:45-6:45 or 6:15-9:30
  • Saturday 9:15-2:15, 1:45-6:45 or 6:15-10:15
  • Sunday - 9:15-2:15 or 1:45-6:00

Please pay close attention to your shift time and location, as there are some specific shifts/roles that fall outside of these hours or are in locations other than Navy Pier.

How old do I have to be to volunteer?

Volunteers must be 18 or older.

How many shifts do I need to sign up for?

All volunteers must sign up for a minimum of two shifts throughout the three day event.

Do I need to have any volunteer experience?

Prior experience is required for all Key Volunteer roles. It is preferred, but not required for other roles, although there may be specific roles that have other requirements (example: TV Center volunteers should have prior knowledge of Production)

What volunteer opportunities do you have for groups?

There may be opportunities for some groups to sign up for the same shift/role/time. If you are interested in registering as a group, please reach out to us at We will make every effort to put your group together during race weekend!

When is Volunteer orientation/Do I have to attend?

Volunteer orientation is mandatory and will occur the week June 6th. During the orientation, you will learn more about the event and get a specific overview of your particular role, as well as meet other volunteers and key staff members for the event. Key Volunteers will be asked to participate in a call the week of May 30th.

What should I expect during event weekend?

Volunteers should expect to have fun! This is a once in a lifetime event, and a great time to meet new people. Volunteers should expect to arrive at least 15 minutes before their shift starts and be in uniform.

As a volunteer, it is essential that you arrive to your volunteer shift on time and that you are able to stay for the duration of your shift.  If you are late or need to leave your volunteer area early, it can negatively affect the proper execution of the event. The success of the race is dependent upon every committed volunteer showing up. We thank you ahead of time for your commitment to ACWS!

Is there a dress code for volunteering?

Volunteers will receive a volunteer shirt and jacket. The official volunteer uniform shirt and jacket should be worn to all shifts with clean and well-maintained black long pants and comfortable shoes.

Where can I park?

More to come…

What should I bring to my shift?

Since volunteer shifts generally last at least between 4-5 hours, and most (or all) of which will be spent outside on your feet, you should consider bringing the following items:

Comfortable, closed-toe shoes

Sun screen

Extra snacks

Water / sport drink

Rain gear, hat, or other weather appropriate clothing

Can I receive credit for community service/school hours?

Yes. After our team has verified that you completed all of your shifts, we can send a verification of hours worked upon request.


Reach out to us!