Boaters and beach goers gathered Saturday, June 25 to enjoy Rough River Lake’s fourth annual Cardboard Boat Regatta on North Fork Campground Beach.
Six boats registered and raced in the four different classes at the regatta, all made out of cardboard, duct tape, glue, and paint. Racers were both local and from out of town, some coming from as far as Louisville. For many, it was their first time.
“We’ve watched it, but this is our first time in it. We don’t know what to expect,” said Ronda Staub, who was there to support Yacht-Z, a red, white, and blue boat captained by Gary Staub from Louisville.
There were four different races for each class and most boats qualified to participate in more than one race.
The civic and neighborhood group kicked off the event with The Sweet and Lost Hope in the first race. The Sweet, manned by Madison Roth and Kaitlyn Lucas, sank quickly and wasn’t able to end the race, though the audience cheered and applauded the girls for effort. Lost Hope, which had six family members from North Creek, finished and won the race after much difficulty, with Trevor Johnson paddling while his teammates swam behind him.
The second race was made up of parents and their children, with boats Apollo 64, Yacht-Z, Duck Hunter, and S.S. Last Minute.
Duck Hunter, with father and son Tim and Brendan Kelting from Louisville, weren’t able to finish the race, as their boat overturned multiple times and began to take water. The other boats, however, all finished the race with Apollo 64 in the lead with Landon Whitley and his grandfather Herman Pawley, of Elizabethtown.
“I’m proud of the result,” said Whitley about Apollo 64, which took an estimated three weeks to build.
The next race was the open category, and it was the biggest race, with all boats except The Sweet and Duck Hunter racing. Though S.S. Last Minute was taking on water in the last race, Colton Gray, from Eastview, was determined to participate and raced without his partner Marlena Young. Despite this, all boats finished the race, with Apollo 64 winning a second time.
The fourth, and last, race was for those 50 years or older. The Yacht-Z and Apollo 64 switched out racers to participate in the race. Both boats did well, with Apollo 64 in the lead for its third win.
Other special awards were given out to participants after cheers rang out for all of the racers and the boats were taken out of the water. The Sweet, raced by Roth and Lucas, won the Titanic Award, also known as The Most Likely to Sink. Best Decorated was awarded to Whitley and Pawley for Apollo 64. Most Entertaining was awarded to the captain of Yacht-Z, Gary Staub.
The regatta was enjoyed by all as the crowd cheered and participants left the water laughing. Though the Cardboard Boat Regatta ended this last weekend, next summer will bring the race again, where newcomers and past participants alike are welcome to try out their handmade boats out on the water.