First Annual Cardboard Boat Regatta

Cardboard boat decorated with red,white and blue.
American Rhino

Have you ever been to a boat regatta? How about a regatta where the boats were made from cardboard?

Over the July 4th holiday weekend, Dan and I attended the “First Annual Cardboard Boat Regatta” in New Town at St. Charles, where we live. There were rules for the regatta, strictly limiting how much duct tape as well as how much other protective measures against water could be used. Basically, one could use tape to put the seams together, and one could use a water-based latex paint, but not much else. In addition, the boat had to be made of corrugated cardboard, not a dense thick cardboard, like one might find in the middle of a carpet roll.

Here’s the rest of the boat line up:

Purple kayak.
Hot dog on a bun.
Blue popsicle.
Fam Bam.  Just cardboard.
Dog theme cardboard boat.  Let's Pawty!
Rock Star taco boat.
This guy has great spirit!

And, oh yea, one more.

Amazon box with a paddle.

The boats raced, two at a time. The boats had to go out past the yellow balloon, turn around, and come back to the shore. If a boat didn’t make it back to the shore, it was over for them. Several boats didn’t finish. The winners of each race, raced again to determine the regatta’s winner. Which boat do you think won?

This was a fun, community activity. We enjoyed seeing the enthusiasm, the creativity and watching it with our neighbors, the best neighbors in the world.

Dan and our neighbors.

I also heard a few conversations about “next year.” Now that people have seen it, some want to sink, I mean, be in it next year, too. They are already thinking and talking about next year’s boat. What kind of cardboard boat would you make?

The idea is that this will be an annual event. For you see, this was a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. The regatta was coordinated by Terry Robbers, who organized it in honor of his mother, Patricia Brown, who passed away from cancer this past September. Terry wrote on our New Town Residents Facebook page, “I’m doing this with hopes the money raised will, one day, be a part of helping find a better treatment or cure for this vicious disease.” I hope so, too, Terry.

The “First Annual Cardboard Boat Regatta” was a big success. It was so much fun to watch; yet, it was more than that. It was an event with heart.

American Rhino After


    • Hi Mary! It was fun to watch; although, each boat race didn’t last long. I suspect Lake Michigan would be a more challenging lake than our little lakes here in New Town, but still great fun, I bet. We are headed to Michigan later this month. I can’t wait! Enjoy your day!


    • It will be interesting to see what next year brings for the regatta. I also thought it a good fund raising event – something fun and different. Happy days and safe travels to you, too!


  1. The person with the Amazon box gets my vote. I don’t want to spend more time building some than it took to sink it!

    I’m glad the fund raiser went well. I’ve heard of these cardboard boat races. The builders are so creative!

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Amazon box did better than I thought. The captain was a young boy. The rules stated there had to be two in the boat, but they didn’t enforce that rule for this young man. I was glad. My guess is the boy decided to enter at the last minute – which was fine. Not a lot of notice was given. Amazon didn’t win, but I think it lasted 2 races. The young man was happy with how the boat did.

      The man who had the taco boat has a ton of spirit and enthusiasm. He is known for his elaborate Christmas decorations in our neighborhood. This past year he had a “Frozen” theme and even had the movie playing. When I complimented him on his Christmas decorations, he said he thought everyone needed some cheering up because of the pandemic.

      Good things to focus on, eh?

      Hope you have a great week, David!

      Liked by 2 people

    • It’s a different lake, not the one across from us. Also, the geese disappear in the summer. I guess they go north to Canada. However, if they were there, I am sure they would be happy to move for the sake of a good cause. At least, that’s what I think the geese would think. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Did people get in the milk cartons? There are so many fun, creative ideas out there. Everybody – both the participants and the spectators – really seemed to enjoy the event. Enjoy your day!


    • This is awesome!! I never knew such things existed – meaning the museum and the annual international race. Hope you don’t mind, I shared the link on our neighborhood facebook page. Some of those ambitious types may check it out. How did you ever learn of this place? Also, I hope you are doing okay and are avoiding Elsa. Enjoy your week!

      Liked by 1 person

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